Turkmenistan updates the National Strategy on Climate Change

Turkmenistan updates the National Strategy on Climate Change

Turkmenistan has approved a new version of the National Strategy on Climate Change. The previous version of the strategy was adopted in 2012. However, the situation has drastically changed for the past seven years and the countries were tasked to update their national strategies according to the modern trends and platforms.

So, in December 2015, the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change adopted a global document – the Paris Agreement, which Turkmenistan ratified on October 21, 2016. The global community has identified a new Climate Agenda in the context of the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Under the Paris Agreement and the implementation of the SDGs, Turkmenistan made commitments to up-date the National Strategy. Partners of the dialogue on its revision include the Ministry of agriculture and environment protection of Turkmenistan with the support of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).

The new version of the Strategy also meets the objectives of the Program of socio-economic development of Turkmenistan for the period 2019-2024. It takes into account a number of obligations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Agreement. For example, to address climate change, 195 countries that adopted the Paris Agreement made a voluntary commitment to limit global temperature rise to well below 1.5-2 degrees Celsius and to reduce greenhouse emission into the atmosphere, according to the nationally determined contributions along with the development of their system monitoring, reporting and verification.

The national strategy was updated taking into account the direction of low carbon development of the country. For this, changes in macroeconomic indicators, carbon intensity of the economy and greenhouse gas emissions were considered. Studies have shown that the economy of Turkmenistan has a high potential for reducing emissions (mitigation).

Therefore, a list of mitigation measures has been revised in all sectors. In addition, it was proposed that key organizations report on these issues to the state body once a year, so that the relevant government body has complete and reliable data.

The issues related to education, training, as well as raising awareness about climate change, attracting representatives of the private sector and civil society were of particular attention. In recent years, in Turkmenistan, some private enterprises, as well as NGOs, have begun to implement the business projects in such areas as energy efficiency, energy saving, water conservation and waste management.

One of the key requirements of the Paris Agreement is to ensure transparency at all stages of its implementation. In the light of the requirements, the chapters on coordination of activities, financing, and the monitoring and evaluation mechanism were revised and added to the updated Strategy.

The approval of the new version of the National Strategy of Turkmenistan is of special interest in connection with the UN Climate Action Summit hold in New York on September 23. The Summit delegates from around the world discussed the issues related to the adaptation to climate change and emission reducing, in particular, the use of the nature as one of the effective ways to overcome the climate crisis, “cleaning” cities, and ending subsidies for the development of fossil fuels.

“This is not a climate negotiating summit. You do not negotiate with nature. This is a climate action summit,” UN Secretary General António Guterres said at his speech.

The speech of the 16-year-old climate activist from Sweden Greta Thunberg was of special interest.

“The eyes of all future generations are upon you, and if you choose to fail us, I say we will never forgive you,” Greta addressed the forum participants.

Ayna BERDIYEVA