SL makes compensation plea in UN climate pledge

24 October 2015 11:20 am - 5     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Sri Lanka submitted its new climate action plan to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

This Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) comes in advance of a new universal climate change agreement which will be reached at the UN climate conference in Paris, in December this year.

This INDC and all others submitted by countries are available on the UNFCCC website here. Including Sri Lanka, 156 parties to the UNFCCC have formally submitted their INDCs. The UNFCCC secretariat provides relevant background data for Sri Lanka in the PDF below.

The Paris agreement will come into effect in 2020, empowering all countries to act to prevent average global temperatures rising above 2 degrees Celsius and to reap the many opportunities that arise from a necessary global transformation to clean and sustainable development.

UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres is encouraging countries to come forward with their INDCs as soon as they are able, underlining their commitment and support towards this successful outcome in Paris. Governments agreed to submit their INDCs in advance of Paris.

All information such as documentation on designing and preparing INDCs as well as on sources of support for INDC preparation, is available here.

Countries have agreed that there will be no back-tracking in these national climate plans, meaning that the level of ambition to reduce emissions will increase over time.

In 2004, a calamitous tsunami killed an estimated 36,000 people as 30-metre high walls of water lashed its low-lying coastal plains.

 “Sri Lanka is largely affected with climate induced extreme weather events and slow onset disasters,” read its national contribution to a global warming treaty due to be finalised in December.

“Losses and damages (L&D) due to these disaster events are heavy, creating a huge pressure on the economy and public spending.”

Government disaster relief stood at US$130 million between 2007 and 2011. Officials fear the bill could grow as global warming makes intense storms or failed monsoons more likely.

Sea-level rise menaces Sri Lanka’s tourism and fishing industries, and the export of agricultural produce, the document warned.

Some threats can be reduced with investment in sea defences or drought-resistant crops, for example. Officials calculate $420 million is needed for climate-proofing over the next decade.
Yet inevitably, there will be impacts people cannot adapt to. Sri Lanka is rallying with its low-lying cousins to force climate change’s wealthy culprits to pay out damages.

For the developing country of 20 million people, which emits just 0.1% of global greenhouse gas emissions, it is a matter of fairness.

“Sri Lanka intends to join hands to develop a fully-fledged Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss and Damage to address the loss and damage issues and in parallel develop an appropriate local mechanism,” reads a highlighted box in the climate pledge, or INDC in UN lingo.

That is a tall order. Rich countries have pushed back on the vexed issue, worried they would be opened up to a litany of lawsuits. Analysts forecast that “loss and damage” will get just a fleeting mention in a new climate agreement.

Envoys from 195 nations are crafting a new global warming treaty to be finalised in Paris in December. National pledges form the backbone of the deal.

Sri Lanka’s plan outlines greenhouse gas cuts to play its part.

It plans to shave 7% off forecasts of future emissions in 2030. That can rise to 23% with help from international partners.

While its energy demand is on track to double within 20 years, it said it will tackle a dirty transport system which belches half of the energy sector emissions.

It plans greener vehicles, enhancing its public transport system and laying electric railways.

Biodiverse rainforest and mangroves, which cover 30% of the country, will be increased to 32% to act as carbon sinks.
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  • Sapu Sunday, 25 October 2015 11:04 AM

    MR supporter gone mad making stupid comments

    Commenting guy Tuesday, 27 October 2015 08:32 AM

    To the author: a tsunami is caused by an eartquake and is in no way connected to extreme weather event, it has therefore nothing to do with climate change and would have happened without warming.also note that the original deadline for submitting iNDCs was in march. Sri Lanka is probably the last country to finally submit an iNDC. They are not ahead at all.

    sss Saturday, 24 October 2015 06:52 PM

    also ask for compensation for our own poor environmental practices

    gayan Saturday, 24 October 2015 07:39 PM

    Bankrupt govt with the begging bowl.

    Bala Saturday, 24 October 2015 11:09 PM

    Yes MR bankrupted it huge lonsat high iterestand spent on useless ventures in hambantota = of no use to the common people but he made money in commissions and kept in dubai.


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