Authorities of the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) of Liberia in collaboration with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and the Danish Technical University (DTU) Partnership on Wednesday, October 24, 2018, commenced a three-day inception workshop on a Technology Needs Assessment (TNA) Project.
According to an EPA release, the project assists developing countries, which are parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), to determine their technology priorities for the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions and adaptation to climate change.
It is implemented by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and Danish Technical University (DTU) Partnership on behalf of the Global Environment Facility (GEF). EPA Executive Director, Nathanial T. Blama, Sr., said the project seeks to transfer technological knowledge and skills from developed countries to Liberia. Blama said that as a member of a global village, Liberia benefits from technology advancement, including the invention of mobile phones, and disclosed that the project seeks to transfer some of this knowledge used to develop phones and other devices.
According to him, the project will not achieve its objectives in the absence of information on Liberia’s technology deficit; therefore, Blama called on participants representing line ministries and agencies to cooperate with the project team by releasing information on their capacities whenever they are approached.
He said the world has evolved from one level to the other to the extent that people are leaning on their strength to do research and development. “To develop your capacities to adapt to the change in the environment or the occurrences within the environment, you cannot do it with your naked eye neither with your naked instincts. It has to be through technology advancement.”
Mr. Blama said UNEP Liberia Country Coordinator, Lucy Gregersen, corroborated that the project intends to help Liberia prioritize technologies that would contribute or adapt to climate change. According to Ms. Gregersen, the project is a country-driven process and should, therefore, be considered a national development goal. “It is also a participatory process where the involvement of all stakeholders is crucial, which is why we have asked you all to join us in the process,” she told the participants.
Ms. Gregersin said that the value gained from involving the different stakeholders in the process means that the country will become stronger in tackling climate change, especially as the TNA provides a roadmap for stakeholders to join in the country’s technological and innovation system in climate change.She lauded Mr. Blama for organizing the workshop.
Dr. Bothwell Batidziral, senior research officer at Cape Town University, South Africa, said that the workshop signifies the launch of the TNA project in Liberia. Dr. Batidziral said that each participant represents key institutions in the country which is expected to contribute to the implementation of the project.