Kenya prepares for COP21 in Paris

Kenyan stakeholders from Civil society organisations, Ministry of Environment, Water and Natural Resources (MEWNR) and members from the private sector came together and combined their approach to COP21 in Paris at the end of the year.

In the same week that Dr Richard Leakey, 70, appointed by Kenyatta Uhuru as Chairman of the Kenya Wildlife Service, civil society, government and private sector unite to map out the Road to Paris on climate change.

Stakeholders from Civil society organisations, Ministry of Environment, Water and Natural Resources (MEWNR) and members from the private sector came together and combined their approach to COP21 in Paris at the end of the year. Among the issues discussed in this mobilization were the Post-Lima context and implications for Africa, climate finance, adaptation and how African countries can plan and submit their Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs).
The National Dialogue on the Road to Paris and the Post 2015 Development Agenda took place at the Panafric Hotel, Nairobi. Organised by the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance and the Kenya Climate Change Working Group. Dr Charles Mutai from MEWNR, kicked off the day’s proceedings by outlining the global context of Climate Finance and that pledges to the Green Climate Fund had now exceeded target of USD 10 Billion. Dr Mutai also announced the government’s establishment of a two-year work programme to advance gender balance and promote gender sensitivity in climate policy.
A recurring theme throughout the day was the need to balance climate funding to account for adaptation action as well as mitigation. Fatuma Hussein from the Kenya Climate Change Secretariat stressed the importance of a united voice on climate change in the lead up to COP21. Hussein also raised the status of Africa as integral within the G77, particularly with the general president being Ugandan.
With all countries currently in the process of submitting their INDCs, members of the meeting agreed that Kenya would be judged on the basis of its INDC contribution. In light of this, the members focused on the INDCs and the importance of a unified position on the process.
The panel discussion reflecting on the ADP meeting and exploring expectations for SBSTA/SBI 42 included presentations from representatives of civil society, the private sector and youth organizations. The issues of women and youth engagement were threaded throughout the discussion. There was strong support for engaging marginalized groups. “Young people are interested in creating green jobs,” said Julius Karanja of the Kenya Climate Youth Network. “Calls for proposals should facilitate youth access to finance practical projects on the ground.”
Sam Ogallah, Programme Manager at PACJA emphasised to the Ministry the need to look beyond Paris: “What if we don’t protocol? What should we do? We need to have a Plan B and prepare very well to ensure we get a fair deal. We are seizing every space to ensure the civil society voices representing poor and vulnerable are being heard not just nationally but internationally.”

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