By Charles Ogallo in Doha Qatar.

United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change -UNFCCC has rolled out a revamped   outreach program aimed at scaling up public awareness on Clean Development Mechanism, commonly known as CDM of the Kyoto Protocol in Africa.

Two projects currently rolled out in Africa and other least developing countries around the globe are among them Regional Collaboration Centers- RCC and Help-Desks, mainly to promote public awareness about CDM and show case benefits of CDM projects in climate change mitigations and promotion of sustainable developments. 
UNFCCC Chief at COP18 in Doha, Qatar. 

These initiatives come as the UN body’s reports indicate that Africa still lags far behind in number of projects being implemented globally under CDM, with only 2 percent of all registered projects to date.

According to experts, Clean Development Mechanism has far reaching benefits in reducing carbon emissions and other greenhouse gases as well as sustainable developments among communities affected by climate change.

Irini Roumboglou one of senior communication officers with UNFCCC told African Radio Journalists attending media training on CDM in Doha, Qatar that the first Regional Collaboration Center- refered as RCC has been launched in Lome, Togo.

It will involve capacity building – to train project developers as experts on chosen technologies/measures identified above in partnership with universities and colleges, give direct support to projects – identified several projects in the CDM cycle that are facing difficulties in validation/registration/monitoring/issuance process and assisting with UNFCCC requirements.

The RCCs will be also promote outreach and workshops programs – In collaboration with BOAD staff, technologies/measures identified to focus on new project development – throigh technology/measure-specific workshops with: Implemented projects e.g. Landfill in Cameroon, CFLs in Senegal, Cookstoves in Mali, Potential projects interested in these technologies/measures and technology providers that have already been involved in CDM projects.
It will further involves  DOEs interested to validate the projects, DNAs of the countries in which the projects will take place , organizations willing to co-fund projects and facilitate local sharing, local expertise learning-by-doing on a sector by sector approach.

According UNFCCC , three more such RCCs will soon be opened where one of them will possibly be based within East Africa, while the remaining two in Asia and Latin America respectively.

Conor Barry who is an expert on CDM with the UNFCCC added that CDM projects implementations will be promoted through support of National Designated Authorities in their respective countries.

 “The RCCs will work directly with project developers in implementing CDM projects in areas where they are based”   Barry added.
Solar Water Heater in Durban , South Africa 

Mr. Barry added that African countries have the best chance through these new developments to improve their global reach in CDM Projects that has being dwelling behind for years. He believes that CDM will help promote faster and sustainable development among local communities.

The UN body will also establish Help-Desks in all Least developing countries with at least more than 10 CDM Projects.

According to UNFCCC Press Officer Irini Roumboglou, lack of adequate regulatory policies, local skills, inappropriate infrastructure as well as lack of institutions and human capacity have hindered effective implementation of CDM projects in Africa.

“The program will improve regional distributions of CDM projects, increase participations besides providing support to Designated National Authorities DNAs and CDM actors” She said.

The new developments come as CDM Executive Board expands its positive list of small-scale project types that qualify for automatic additionality in an effort to greatly extend the benefits of the CDM to underrepresented countries such as Kenya due to their obvious ability to reduce emissions and the obvious barriers they face to implementation of CDM projects.

Africa has only 2 percent of the 5000 CDM projects registered to date by UNFCCC.


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