How the national response to the Paris Agreement can become part of the development policy of the state?

Climate change are both an opportunity and a challenge

How the national response to the Paris Agreement can become part of the development policy of the state?

Climate change are both an opportunity and a challenge


The central goal of the Paris Agreement is to strengthen the global response to climate change by maintaining the rise of global temperature in this century below 2 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial levels and to continue with the efforts to limit the temperature increase event bellow 1,5 degrees Celsius.

Additionally, the Agreement has an objective to strengthen the capability of the countries to deal with the climate change impacts. In order to achieve these ambitious goals, appropriate financial flows, new technological framework and a framework for strengthening the capacities will be established, which will be done in agreement with the national goals of developing and most vulnerable countries thus supporting their activities. The Agreement, also foresees an increased transparency of the activities and of the support through introducing a stronger transparency framework.
Paris Agreement requires all parties to invest their best efforts to the achievement of their nationally determined contributions (NDC) and to further these efforts throughout the following years. Among these requirements is also the obligation of all parties regularly to report on their emissions and on their implementation efforts.
Precisely these global requirements present a significant challenge for the countries which have an objective to become part of the European family, at a time when the European Union is the leader on the global scene having in mind its climate change mitigation and adaptation actions of the most vulnerable sectors. EU has one of the most comprehensive legal compilations in its climate legislation and it relies on knowledge, strong institutional and technical capacities and human capital. Rationalization of reporting obligations will require of the countries to restructure several areas of their society. On the other hand, the fulfillment of these obligations may be seen as a challenge for introducing transformative changes, but also as a possibility for introducing new approaches in planning, development and policy implementation.
Building the so-called climate resilient society by ensuring low carbon growth and development, should be based on synergy approach and minimizing negative consequences in the general development and climate policy.
This would mean to encourage the increase of ambition in every next cycle of the national contributions of the parties towards the Paris Agreement by analyzing and proposing policies and measures which implementation results in maximizing the co-benefits (as potential for generating "green" jobs, health co-benefits etc.). Of course, the probability for success from introducing a specific new policy in the mid and long term, in large percent depends on the acceptance and the clarity of that policy, which requires raising awareness and involvement of the public. This is an element which has to be addressed in parallel with the aspects of building institutional and technical capacities.
Similar to this, the development strategies and investment plans should integrate climate factors, and spatial and urban plans, as well as sector policies in the energy sector (transport as well), water management, agriculture, forests, biodiversity and nature, should be focused on ensuring low-carbon development and growth and should be adapted to the projected climate change impacts.
Such integrated approach requires adaptation of education, research and development systems. The analysis of SDG 13 targets, may show that there are gaps in the policies which implementation would at the same time lead to achieving SDG 4, the goal on quality education. In the national context, it has been shown that integration of climate related aspects into education and research and development policies is a gap, but in some time, it is also a possibility for the country to generate a basis for "wise" policy development in order to achieve low carbon growth and development and to build a society more resilient to future climate influence, where the partnership between science-policy-business community-public is a key precondition.
Climate change require environmentally innovative approaches and technologies. Eco-innovations will become key for the economic growth, competitiveness and employment. The prerequisite for new job creation, economic growth and welfare of the population in Europe are efficient environmental innovations which require high environment protection standards, in combination with a wide range of other economic instruments - value added tax reduction for energy efficient goods and services, green public procurement etc. In the national context, this means inclusion of climate aspects in the industrial and innovative policies and cross-referencing SDG 9 on industry, innovations and infrastructure with SDG 12, on sustainable consumption and production.

Grncharovska Teodora, State Counselor on Climate Change

Dr. Grncharovska Teodora is a State Counselor on Climate Change within the Ministry of Environment and Physical Planning, Focal Point for the climate chapter in the National Program for the Adoption of the EU Acquis Communautaire and a Focal Point to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. She has 20 years of experience in programming various strategic and planning documents in the field of climate change, as well as relevant sectoral policies at the national level. She has published more than 20 scientific papers on this topic. The principles underlying her work are ,,wise,, policy making contributing towards law carbon development and more resilient society solutions based on scientific analyzes and projections for climate change, while respecting the principles of transparency, inclusion and partnership with stakeholders.

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