“Decisive Leadership Necessary to Address Change”

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The dialogue on Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) attracted government representatives, partners and foreign experts that are in the NDC implementation.

…UNDP tells dialogue on nationally determined contributions

The program manager of the National Adaptation Plan (NAPs) project, E. Abraham T. Tumbey, has told a two-day National Dialogue on Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County, that addressing climate change requires decisive leadership and coordinated stakeholders input, an EPA release has said.

According to the release, the two-day event, which started on Wednesday, November 11, 2019, in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County, was organized by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of Liberia, United Nations Development Program (UNDP), Conservation International (CI) and REDD+ Implementation Unit at the Forestry Development Authority (FDA).

The dialogue attracted government representatives, partners and foreign experts that are in the NDC implementation.

Mr. Tumbey said that the project has been four years since Liberia submitted its NDC as a demonstration of the country’s commitment to contribute to the global effort on combating climate change.

Tumbey said that a core pillar of the Paris Agreement is that countries, including Liberia, will scale up their national climate effort every five years.

“Liberia took the first step in 2015 by submitting its INDC; and in 2020, it is expected to take the next. By making these commitments, the country has signaled that a climate-resilient future is underway,” Tumbey said.

“As we prepare for the implementation of the Paris Agreement in 2020, convening of this dialogue is indeed a landmark effort that allows us, as partners, to reflect and outline a clear pathway and approach for a collaborative effort in supporting Liberia in a coherent and effective manner,” Mr. Tumbey told the gathering in a statement delivered on behalf of UNDP.

The meeting, he said, also provided a unique opportunity to engage a broader group of stakeholders in the NDC process and increase ownership of national and sector climate commitments.

“Such a broader engagement can also help increase national ownership of NDCs among diverse stakeholder groups,” Tumbey added.

“We also have the occasion to identify opportunities for enhancing Liberia’s NDC, including mechanisms for governance, coordination and effective implementation. For us as UNDP, the dialogue affords us the opportunity to grasp a deeper understanding of the various roles and inputs of existing partners supporting Liberia’s NDC and National Communications and thus enabling us to identify our niche within this important landscape,” he said.

Mr. Tumbey told the gathering that addressing climate change requires decisive leadership and coordinated stakeholders input, adding that the UNDP is happy to be a part of this process.

Benjamin Karmorh, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Focal Person, said that Liberia is a party to the Paris Climate Agreement, which he said was ratified in 2018.

Karmorh said that the ratification of the instrument demonstrates the political will on the part of the government in fulfilling its own international obligations.

He said that the NDC is a major activity that all parties to the Paris Climate Agreement should undertake, and this dialogue is just a jumpstart in terms of Liberia revising it.

He said that there will be a lot of activities after the dialogue, which seeks to drill down on gaps in NDC implementation; identify opportunities for internal and external partnerships; and explore how to strengthen governance and coordination mechanisms for effective NDC implementation.

Mr. Karmorh said that Liberia submitted its Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC) in 2015, outlining the country’s intended actions to contribute to the global effort to combat climate change.

“INDC was a major requirement for all countries that were taking part in the Paris Climate Change talk, so Liberia submitted her plan of action in terms of how she would address climate change,” he said.

According to Mr. Karmorh, Liberia told the international community that it was going to address climate change from an adaptation and mitigation standpoint.

He assured that all relevant stakeholders in the business of climate change will be invited so that every view can be reflective in the revised NDC when it is submitted to the international community.

EPA Deputy Executive Director, Randall M. Dobayou, lauded the participants for turning out en masse for the event.

Dobayou, who declared the dialogue opened, recounted EPA’s achievements, including the interventions at New Kru Town and in Buchanan City aimed at mitigating the negative impacts of climate change in Liberia.

Conservation International (CI) Deputy Director, Peter Mulbah, three years ago, identified gaps in Liberia’s NDC, and said he is happy that the country has taken a bold step in implementing some of the gaps CI identified.

Mulbah recalled that since 2000, CI has been a very strong partner supporting the Liberian government’s initiative, for which they were glad to be part of the dialogue.

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