Press releases

Friday 03 Oct 2008

German Government invests $18 million to support clean energy and climate change adaptation

Nairobi – Germany today boosted its funding for the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) earmarking $18 million for the organization’s work on clean energy and climate proofing vulnerable economies.

The announcement was made today by German Federal Minister for the Environment Sigmar Gabriel during a meeting with United Nations Under-Secretary General and UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner at the UNEP Headquarters in Nairobi. Here they exchanged their views on current issues surrounding international climate policy.

A main thrust of their discussions centred on the climate convention negotiations being held at the end of the year in Poznan, Poland leading to the crucial UN climate convention meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark in late 2009.

Discussions also centred on the work of the German Presidency in relation to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) which Germany hosted earlier in the year and which will be held next in Nagoya, Japan in 2010.

Mr. Gabriel and Mr. Steiner agreed to further intensify their cooperation. The German Environment Minister announced that Germany will increase its financial involvement with UNEP by funding projects supporting developing countries in clean energy; energy efficiency; adaptation to climate change in developing countries and boosting the capacity of developing economies for international negotiations.

Minister Sigmar Gabriel said: “Using the money raised by the auctioning of emission certificates on the European carbon market, we intend to support UNEP with an additional $18 million within the next three years for specific projects to improve energy efficiency and advance the use of renewable energies in developing countries. Such market-generated financial resources will be key to achieving real progress in combating climate change.”

Achim Steiner, United Nations Under-Secretary General and Executive Director of UN Environment Programme (UNEP), said: "I would like to thank the German government for this significant contribution of over $18 million to UNEP's work on supporting developing countries on clean energy, adaptation and international negotiation through immediate and practical measures".

The funds, generated from the auctioning of carbon credits, underline how carbon markets are capable of delivering wide ranging benefits above and beyond the mitigation of greenhouse gases in developed economies, he said.

"UNEP will invest the new money to boost the capacity of developing countries in energy efficiency projects; adaptation of vulnerable communities to climate change and climate proofing of economies and in climate negotiations," added Mr. Steiner.

"At this stage of the climate change negotiation process, it is essential that we demonstrate on the ground how a future agreement in Copenhagen can deliver real and tangible benefits for developing countries and thereby a basis for achieving the objectives of a global response to climate change," he said.

Ahead of the 10th Conference of Parties of the CBD which will take place in Nagoya (Japan), both sides stressed the need to make the negotiations on an internationally binding Access and Benefit-Sharing (ABS) regime a success.

An international regime could be a key to increasing flows from North to South in order to reverse the rate of loss of biodiversity while generating new, biologically-based products in areas from pharmaceuticals to materials and agriculture.

In Germany in May, governments agreed to engage in such negotiations setting a deadline of 2010 for their conclusion.

For More Information Please Contact (German contacts)

And Nick Nuttall, UNEP Spokesperson/Head of Media, on Tel: +254 733 632755, E-mail: nick.nuttall@unep.org

Friday 03 Oct 2008
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