National

Indonesia to double efforts
at climate conference

The Indonesian government is expected to double down on its efforts on the climate-change issue by sending more delegates to the upcoming United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Doha, Qatar, slated for between Nov. 26 and Dec. 7.

The government hopes that it can engage more in global cooperation, mainly in the green-business
sector.

Spokesperson for the government-sanctioned organization tasked to deal with climate change, the Climate Change National Council (DNPI), Amanda Katili Niode said that the number of Indonesian delegates would double from the number dispatched to the UNFCCC conference in Durban in 2011.

In the conference, the Indonesian government will also hold an event called the Indonesia Climate Change Day.

A number of ministries, companies and NGOs are expected to join the event, held on the sidelines of the 18th Conference of Parties to
UNFCCC.

“It is a perfect event to promote the opportunities of investment and business that will promote low carbon emissions in Indonesia,” said Rachmat Witoelar, DNPI executive chair and the President’s special envoy for Climate Change Control, during the launch of the program in Jakarta on Monday.

The Indonesia Climate Change Day, a two-day event between Dec. 1 and Dec. 2, will have seminars and exhibitions with the theme of “The Business Response to the Challenges and Opportunities of Climate Change in Indonesia.”

Rachmat said that the Indonesian government would focus on the energy sector, given the abundance of renewable resources.

“We have only utilized up to six percent of our renewable energy, such as hydropower and thermal power, because we still need massive initial investments. Some parties, including New Zealand and the World Bank, have expressed interest in providing financial assistance for those projects,” he said.

The nation’s energy sector, which heavily relies on fossil fuels, ranks as the second-biggest source of carbon emissions after the forestry sector, and accounts for 65 percent of total carbon emissions.

Indonesia has pledged to cut back its carbon emissions by 26 percent from the current 2.1 gigatons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e)
by 2020.

In the last UNFCCC conference in Durban, South Africa, in which 194 countries and 12,480 participants attended, Indonesia sent the second-largest delegation after Brazil, bringing more than 200 representatives from 20 government bodies, 11 organizations and six companies.

During the conference, the 194 countries agreed on the Durban Platform, which pledged to adopt the second commitment of the Kyoto Protocol alongside a new global protocol or legally binding instruments for emissions cuts to be operational by 2020.

The member countries have also agreed to pledge to contribute initial funds, to assist developing countries launch mitigation and adaptation
efforts.

The conference also included a draft on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) as a climate-change mitigation mechanism under the UNFCCC convention.

REDD+ provides a mechanism to reduce the rate of deforestation in developing countries by offering incentives to discourage changes in forest use.

Indonesia, which loses about a million hectares of forest a year, signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) with Norway in 2010.

Norway has allotted up to US$ 1 billion over seven or eight years to finance Indonesia’s emission-reduction programs. (yps)

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