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Africa Weekly
Sustainable Development Guidance Document
Edition 1:16 - Tuesday, 20 October 2009
Editors Note: Welcome to the sixteenth issue of IISD's Africa Weekly Sustainable Development Guidance Document. The Guidance Document replaces our Linkages Africa newsletter, and we aim to provide this service on a weekly basis. If you should come across a news article or have a submission for the next issue, please send it directly to richards@iisd.org. The Africa Weekly Sustainable Development Guidance Document is an exclusive publication of IISD for the AFRICASD-L list and should not be reposted or republished to other lists/websites without the permission of IISD (you can write to Kimo Goree for permission.) If you have been forwarded this issue and would like to subscribe to AFRICASD-L, please visit: http://www.iisd.ca/email/africasd-L.htm
Events in Review: 9-19 October 2009
9 October: UNEP: Momentum towards the establishment of a new international body to address the loss and degradation of the world's multi trillion dollar nature-based assets gathered pace at the Second Ad hoc Intergovernmental and Multi-stakeholder Meeting on an Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) which took place from 5-9 October 2009, at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. Participants provided strong support that an intergovernmental panel, similar to the one that has catalyzed political action on the issue of climate change, is now needed to galvanize a step change in respect to the management of biodiversity and ecosystems. [More information]
[IISD Reporting Services coverage of IPBES II]
13 October: ECA: The UN Economic Commission for Africa’s (ECA) Committee on Trade, Regional Cooperation and Integration (CTRI)-a subsidiary body of the Economic Commission for Africa- opened its 6th session in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, with calls to fast track the effective implementation of regional integration instruments at national level. More than 100 delegates representing Ministries in charge of regional integration, Pan African institutions, Regional economic communities (RECs) and developments partners are attending this three-day session. They are expected to formulate policy options to mainstream regional integration in each member country of the various regional groupings. [Press release]
13 October: AfDB: The African Development Bank (AfDB) Bank Group experts and their counterparts from the Global Water Partnership (GWP) concluded a two-day discussion on Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) in East and Southern Africa. The meeting, which ran from October 8-9, 2009, was marked by several presentations on integrated water management results and the evaluation of the water situation in the region. The meeting also focused on the draft concept note that was prepared for the Bank’s review and served as a venue for experts to share perspectives and experiences on water resources development on the continent.
[More information]
13 October: UNEP: African Parliamentarians on Climate Change: Entitled 'Climate Change: One Africa, One Voice, One Position', the African Parliamentarians Summit on Climate Change was launched by Kenya's President Mwai Kibaki at UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. Co-organized by the Kenyan Parliament, the Pan African Parliamentarians Network on Climate Change and the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance, the two-day meeting is aimed at consolidating past and ongoing efforts and initiatives by Parliamentarians in Africa in the run-up to the AU-AMCEN special session in Addis Ababa, 19-23 October 2009, and the climate negotiations in Copenhagen in December. [More information]
13 October: ECA: Development: With the deadline of achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) close at hand, African governments need to recommit to pushing forward policies that address population and other critical social development issues, especially the health and rights of African women, a review report from the ECA states. The report, called ICPD and MDGs: Working as one, reviews the progress achieved by African governments and the challenges they face in implementing population, gender, and other social development policies since a Plan of Action was first adopted 15 years ago in Cairo. The report will underpin a week-long conference on these issues taking place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in October 2009. The conference, which will be held at ministerial level, is called ICPD@15. It is jointly organized by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the African Union Commission (AUC) and UNECA. [More information]
13 October: UNEP: Climate Change: Large mammals, such as gorillas and elephants, are keystone species in African rainforests and should be included in the upcoming climate change negotiations in Copenhagen, according to UN Ambassador for the Year of the Gorilla Ian Redmond. Redmond has just returned from a fact-finding mission across eight African gorilla range States, and his insights highlight the need for a comprehensive approach to conserve rain forests and gorillas in the Congo Basin. Gorillas are second to elephants in the number of seeds they disperse each day in African forests. The survival of forests requires the protection of the animals in them as well as the trees. In the long term, deforestation is as much a consequence of over-hunting as of cutting trees for charcoal or timber. Supporting existing national action plans to halt deforestation of gorilla habitat is one of the major objectives of the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) Agreement on the Conservation of Gorilla and their Habitat during the Year of the Gorilla campaign.
[UNEP press release]
14 October: AfDB: Nobel Laureate, Wangari Maathai, has agreed to deliver a lecture on the theme: “Natural Resource Management and Poverty Reduction: Strengthening the Links.” The theme of the lecture, which has been scheduled to take place on 27 October 2009, in Tunis, Tunisia, has been motivated by the need to deepen current understanding of how good practice in the use of natural resources can promote accelerated poverty alleviation, environmental sustainability and development, particularly in rural parts of Africa. The need is motivated by the overarching challenge of ensuring that Africa’s natural resources become a positive factor in broad-based socio-economic development. [More information]
14 October: AU/EU: Climate Change: In the framework of the Africa-European Union (EU) dialogue, African and EU leaders addressed the “climate change agenda” during the 13th Ministerial Meeting of African and EU Troikas, which convened in Addis Ababa on 14 October 2009. Ministers agreed on the urgency in addressing African priorities in Copenhagen, such as adaptation, mitigation, technology development and transfer, financing, capacity building, and addressing deforestation as well as land degradation and coastal area erosion. On adaptation, they recognized the need for long-term coordinated actions based on solidarity, as well as on common but differentiated responsibility for mobilizing support. They further underscored the importance of “fast-start pre-2013” financing for capacity building and integration of climate change in national development planning. Ministers also noted that implementation of adaptation should be flexible, participatory and integrated in development cooperation, with particular emphasis on the need to initiate cooperation to promote wider use of the Clean Development Mechanism in Africa. Finally, ministers stressed the need to enhance women and youth’s participation in climate change activities and decision-making. [Meeting communiqué]
15 October: World bank/Rwanda: The World Bank has approved an International Development Agency (IDA) grant for US$4.5 million equivalent, to improve the policy and institutional framework of the renewable energy and energy efficiency sub-sectors and to increase private sector participation in the renewable energy sector in Rwanda. These objectives will be achieved by building capacity in the Ministry of Infrastructure (MININFRA) and the local private sector to design, launch and monitor sustainable energy projects. It will also: increase efficiency in the charcoal value chain by promoting more efficient stoves and charcoal production methods; provide transparent market regulation and guidelines to facilitate small distributed power production and distribution services; and provide initial support for the market of solar water heaters in Rwanda. [Rwanda sustainable energy development project] [Rwanda Electricity Access Scale-up and Sector Wide Approach (SWAp) Development project]
16 October: FAO: Agriculture: FAO Director-General Jacques Diouf  has called on world leaders to reach a “broad consensus on the total and rapid elimination of hunger” when they gather in Rome for the World Summit on Food Security of Heads of State and Government on 16-18 November in Rome, Italy.  In his annual address to mark World Food Day, Diouf also urged leaders to agree to increase agriculture’s share of official development assistance to 17 percent, the level it was in 1980, from the current five percent.  The theme of this year’s World Food Day is “Achieving food security in times of crisis”. Diouf said the current economic crisis that had forced 105 million more people into hunger was “historically unprecedented” as it directly followed the 2008 world food price crisis. [More information]
16 October: UNEP: A far more sophisticated approach needs to be taken when developing biofuels as an environmentally-friendly energy option a new UNEP report has concluded. Governments should fit biofuels into an overall energy, climate, land-use, water and agricultural strategy if their deployment is to benefit society, the economy and the environment as a whole. The report, the first by UNEP ‘s International Panel for Sustainable Resource Management, says some first generation biofuels such as ethanol from sugar cane can have positive impacts in terms of greenhouse gas emissions. [More information]
19 October: ECA: Climate Change: About 150 African lead negotiators and high level experts on climate change from all African countries gather for their Second Technical Meeting in Addis Ababa to map out the region’s climate platform, barely 44 days before the crucial negotiations in Copenhagen. The Second Technical Meeting of the African high-level expert panel and negotiators on climate change is the last major preparatory meeting in Africa before the fifteenth Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change scheduled for December 2009 in Copenhagen. The negotiators and high level experts will update the African common negotiating position; deliberate on the framework of African climate change programmes and its associated frameworks of sub regional climate change programmes; and deepen the understanding of African experts on the issues being negotiated in connection with the international climate change regime beyond 2012. [More information]

REPORTS AND PUBLICATIONS

UPCOMING MEETINGS
18-25 October: Thirteenth World Forestry Congress, Buenos Aires, Argentina. [More information]
19-23 October: The Special Summit of Heads of State and Government of the African Union (AU) on Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons in Africa, Kampala, Uganda. [More information]
19-23 October: LDC Workshop on Implementation of National Adaptation Programmes of Action, Dar-es- Salaam, Tanzania.
[More information]
22-23 October: Climate Change: Technology Development and Transfer, New Delhi, India. [More information]
26 October: African Development Bank Conference on Enhancing African Women in Development, Yaoundé, Cameroon.
[More Information]
27-30 October: Sixth Session of the Committee on Food Security and Sustainable Development (CFSSD-6), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. [Information note]
4-8 November: 21st Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol, Port Ghalib, Egypt. [More information]
10-11 November: Fourth International Conference of the Egyptian Society for Environmental Sciences: impacts of climate change on natural resources, Ismailia, Egypt. [More information]
11-13 November: 4th African Economic Conference, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. [More information]
16-18 November: World Summit on Food Security, Rome, Italy. [More information]
The Africa Weekly Sustainable Development Guidance Document is a publication of the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) <info@iisd.ca>, publishers of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin © <enb@iisd.org>. This issue was compiled and edited by Tallash Kantai and Richard Sherman. The Guidance Document is part of IISD Reporting Service’s African Regional Coverage (ARC) Project in partnership with South Africa’s Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism (DEAT), the UN Environment Programme’s Regional Office for Africa (UNEP ROA) and the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. The Director of IISD Reporting Services is Langston James “Kimo” Goree VI <kimo@iisd.org>. The Programme Manager of the African Regional Coverage Project is Richard Sherman <rsherman@iisd.org>. Funding for the Africa Weekly Sustainable Development Guidance Document has been provided by Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and the International Development Research Centre, Canada, through the African Regional Coverage Project for IISD Reporting Service’s coverage of African regional meetings. IISD can be contacted at 161 Portage Avenue East, 6th Floor, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3B 0Y4, Canada; tel: +1-204-958-7700; fax: +1-204-958-7710. The opinions expressed in the Guidance Document are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of IISD. Electronic versions of the Guidance Document are sent to the electronic distribution list (in HTML format) and can be found on the Linkages WWW-server at <http://www.iisd.ca/africa/>. For information on the ARC, including requests to provide reporting services, contact the Director of IISD Reporting Services at <kimo@iisd.org>, +1-646-536-7556 or 300 East 56th St., 11A, New York, New York 10022, US.
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