RIPS and EPA host Post-COP23 colloquium

Accra, A post-UN Conference of Parties (COP23) on Climate Change has been organised in Accra to sensitise key stakeholders on emerging issues from the Conference held in Bonn, Germany in November.

The event, also attended by policymakers and key public officials, was hosted by the Regional Institute for Population Studies (RIPS) and its Climate Change Resource Centre-Ghana (CCRC-GH) of the University of Ghana, in collaboration with the Climate Change Unit of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The post-COP23 event, which was supported by the Government of Canada, served as the first stocktaking colloquium on the multilateral Paris Agreement that demands countries to reduce their carbon emissions to below two degrees Celsius as well as adopt and implement nationally determined contributions that would help in mitigating and adapting to climate change impacts.

Dubbed: 2017 Post-COP23 Climate Change Stocktaking Colloquium, the event provided the platform to support Ghana’s implementation of the Paris Climate Agreement that critically addresses the Sustainable Development Goals.

Dr Delali Benjamin Dovie, the Convener of Post-COP23 event, said the colloquium was being organised against the background of a successful Climate Festival held on 24th October 2017, to prepare Ghana towards COP23 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

The Conference of Parties is the next most significant UN global event after the UN General Assembly.

Dr Dovie said RIPS decided to institute the Post-COP Climate Stocktaking Colloquium as a high-level event that provided a timely platform to discuss issues of the Conference and to relay the information to society.

The University is here to provide the knowledge and the intellectual capacity to fill the gap, he said.

He said going forward in climate negotiation processes, there was the need to involve more scientists in the pre-COP activities here in Ghana, and elsewhere in Africa, so they could make the critical inputs into the policies and data that informed the tenets of global climate issues.

Ms Christine Asare, the Director of Strategic Environmental Assessment Unit of the EPA, who chaired the function, commended the RIPS for leading the process of engaging stakeholders to take stock of the Conference, which would go a long way to help provide the needed policy advice on mitigating climate change impact in the country.

She said the EPA, on its part, would continue to involve and work with the private sector and other key stakeholders in addressing the environmental issues, especially climate impacts, confronting Ghana.

Professor Samuel Nii Ardey Codjoe, the Director of RIPS, said the stock taking event was important as it would help fill the gaps and provide answers to emerging issues as a follow-up to the COP.

Mr Kyekyeku Yaw Oppong-Boadi, the National Focal Person on Climate Change in Ghana, said in all 70 Ghanaian delegates, led by Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation participated in the COP23.

He said the delegates were able to participate in many side-events and some bilateral engagements that would be followed up at the country-level to help Ghana accrue the benefits from such global negotiations.

Meanwhile, as part of the event, two panel discussions were held on the outcomes of the Conference with focus on Governance, Transparency, Loss and Damage and Response Measures.

Issues on Adaptation, Agriculture, and Climate Finance were also discussed while the Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the Scientific Issues for Edmonton 2018, were also discussed by Ghanaian technocrats and scientists who formed parts of the African Group of Negotiators at the COP23.

COP23 was hosted by the Republic of Fiji as the Chair, and technically supported by the German Government.

It was opened on Monday, November 6, and closed on Friday, November 17, 2017.

Source: Ghana News Agency