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Second East Asia Climate Forum

16 June 2010 | Seoul, Republic of Korea

The Second East Asia Climate Forum convened on 16 June 2010 at the Shilla Hotel in Seoul, Republic of Korea, to provide a forum for dialogue on reducing greenhouse gas emissions in East Asia and for turning the challenges of climate change into sustainable economic opportunities. The Forum was an opportunity for high-level officials from Asian countries, experts from international organizations, think tanks and other stakeholders to discuss various issues related to low-carbon green growth.

Sessions at the Forum addressed: green growth in the Republic of Korea; new paradigms for economic and social development; implementing green growth and energy issues; adaptation and water issues; and promoting international cooperation for green growth. During the Forum, the Republic of Korea launched the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) to undertake research on shifting towards low-carbon economies.

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LEE Myung-bak, President of the Republic of Korea, making his opening address
to the Second East Asia Climate Forum.

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OPENING PLENARY:
 
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President LEE Myung-bak with Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary, UNFCCC

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President of the Republic of Korea LEE Myung-bak opened the East Asia Climate Forum and noted that climate change is the greatest threat to humanity.

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KIM Cae-one, Chairman of the National Research Council for Economics, Humanities and Social Sciences (NRCS), welcomed participants, noting that NRCS has studied methods of cooperation in East Asia where 42% of global emissions originate.
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In the morning, KIM Hyung-kook, Chair of the Presidential Committee on Green Growth (PCGG), made opening remarks, noting Korea’s work in agriculture and natural restoration, and its dependence on energy and resources from developing countries.

 

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In a video message, UN Secretary-General BAN Ki-moon welcomed the launch of GGGI, mentioning that President LEE Myung-bak had announced GGGI in Copenhagen, and noted that climate change is a great challenge that can be met with best practices developed by countries such as Korea.

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The Chair of the GGGI, HAN Seung-Soo, Former Prime Minister, Republic of Korea, emphasized using the GGGI as a tool to break free of the old paradigm presuming tradeoffs between growth and addressing climate change.

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In a video message to the Forum Lord Nicholas Stern, London School of Economics, underscored the enormous threat posed by climate change and that Korea is an example of how to generate growth.

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UNFCCC Executive Secretary Yvo de Boer welcomed the GGGI initiative as an opportunity to bring theory and practice together to demonstrate the success of Republic of Korea’s green growth model.

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Mario Amano, Deputy Secretary General, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), outlined the OECD green growth strategy to be implemented in 2011 and its implications for Asia.

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SESSION 1: Green Growth - New Paradigm for Economic and Social Development
 
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KANG Sung-jin, Korea University and NRCS, discussed the relationship between greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and development, posing the question of poverty reduction versus low carbon growth.

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Moderator Thomas Heller, Stanford University, introduced the topic underscoring issues of economic and social development.

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LEE Ji-soon, Seoul National University and NRCS, presented a conceptual framework for green growth based on output analysis with inclusion of environmental costs.

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Paul Ekins, University College London, noted that in addition to climate change, biodiversity loss and the abuse of the nitrogen cycle are areas where human activities are taking place outside of sustainable limits.

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Dominic Waughray, World Economic Forum, discussed integrating political analysis of green growth with the use of calculation of tradeoffs of energy, food and water.

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SESSION 2-1: Implementing Green Growth in Asia - Focusing on Energy Issues
 
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In the afternoon a panel chaired by SHIN Jeong-shik, Konkuk University, discussed, inter alia, opportunities and challenges for energy and green growth, and Korea’s energy policy in the context of green growth.

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International Energy Agency (IEA) Executive Director Nobuo Tanaka, highlighting the role of the IEA in promoting energy security, emphasized the need to achieve both energy security and environmental sustainability.

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KAM Nam-hoon, Ministry of Knowledge Economy, Republic of Korea, presented Korea’s energy strategy for green growth.

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Heherson Alvarez, the Philippines, noting the policy responses to climate change undertaken by the Philippines emphasized the importance of thought and intellectual frameworks to bring about a new renaissance of global green growth and underscored transfer of capacity to developing countries.

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Lai Nguyen, Viet Nam, emphasized sharing experiences and best practices to grow green economies.

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Henry Derwent, International Emmissions Trading Association (IETA), discussed emissions trading and its implications for green growth in Asia.

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Thein Aung, Myanmar, underscored the cost of inaction and described actions taken by Myanmar.

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Bory Alikhanov, Uzbekistan, highlighted the acute problems facing the Aral Sea basin.

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Zoal Azha Yusof, Malaysia, noted the importance of technology transfer and said three sectors are the focus of efforts to reduce carbon intensity, including: efficiency; renewable energy; and waste management.

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View of the participants of the Second East Asia Climate Forum.

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SESSION 2-2: Implementing Green Growth in Asia - Focusing on Energy Issues
 
   
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View of the dais during the session 2-2 on "Implementing Green Growth in Asia."

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YUN Zuwhan, Korea University, moderated
the session.

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MOON Jung-ho, Ministry of Environment, Republic of Korea, discussed climate change impacts on Korea such as temperature and sea level rise, deforestation and floods.

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Rex Victor Cruz, the Philippines, emphasized adopting integrated water resource management through a river basin approach, unifying upland, lowland and coastal stakeholders to implement synchronized programmes.

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Haji Osman, Brunei, described programmes for flood protection, climate change risk assessment, and reduction of water wastage.

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Yoshihisa Shimizu, Kyoto University, described global water stresses in Africa, China, and other regions, and noted that 41% of world population does not have access to clean water.

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LEE Sang-Eun, Republic of Korea, emphasized the importance of ensuring water security through international cooperation, noting that it cannot be guaranteed individually.

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Khempeng Pholsena, Laos, described the Laotian national strategy on climate change that promotes sustainable development.

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Sam Nuon Khong, Cambodia, described his government’s green-growth roadmap financed by Korea in cooperation with the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP).

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Khursandkul Zikirov, Tajikistan, highlighted the water related challenges faced by mountainous countries and the need for further study and conservation of glaciers to reduce climate risk.

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Pimuk Simaroj, Thailand, noted Thailand’s IWRM strategy through supply and demand side actions, including infrastructure construction and implementation of efficiency practices.

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SESSION 3: Promoting International Cooperation for Green Growth
 
   
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Participants heard presentations on Green Growth throughout the day.
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KIM Kyung-Soo, Republic of Korea, moderated the session.

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SHIN Boo-nam, Republic of Korea, Korean Mission to the United Nations, described the prepcoms of the Commission on Sustainable development in anticipation of Rio + 20 in 2012.

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CHUNG Rae-kwon, UNESCAP, described a paradigm shift toward green growth in terms of the rationale for low-carbon development, to reduce risks of multiple crises resulting from exceeding the carrying capacity of the environment.

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Luimed Gansuki, Mongolia, said that Mongolia has designated 2009-2010 as a year of green development, with a national action program action on climate change, desertification, water management, renewable energy, and environmental sustainable production.

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Valerie D'Costa, World Bank, described the bank’s climate technology innovation center programme, which facilitates growth of local businesses for sustainable development and green jobs in developing countries.

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JUNG Tae-yong, Asia Development Bank (ADB), described ADB priorities for Asian development as low carbon growth, resilient economies, sustainable forest management and land use.

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Lukita Tuwo, Indonesia, underscored their efforts at green growth planning, which focus on improved management of forests and peatlands, food resilience, green budgeting, energy efficiency and clean energy.

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LIM So-young, Korean International
Cooperation Agency, highlighted the disproportionate impacts of climate change on the most vulnerable and described initiatives by the Republic of Korea including founding of the EACP with US $200 million to address climate change.

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CHUNG Chin-seung, APEC Climate Center, noted that policies cannot simply be transplanted into countries and recommended an expert forum to assist with joint implementation as well as public participation and livelihood promotion in partner countries.

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Photos from the Congratulatory Reception of the GGGI Launching:
 
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Related Links
East Asia Climate Forum resources
*Presidential Committee on Green Growth
*Green Growth Page, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Republic of Korea

IISD RS resources
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*IISD RS coverage of the 2010 Climate Investment Funds Partnership Forum, 18-19 March 2010, Manila, Philippines
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*IISD RS coverage of the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference, 7-19 December 2009, Copenhagen, Denmark
*IISD RS coverage of Selected Side Events at the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference, 7-19 December 2009, Copenhagen, Denmark
*IISD RS coverage of the Copenhagen Business Day, 11 December 2009, Copenhagen, Denmark
*IISD RS coverage of the Barcelona Climate Change Talks 2009, 2-6 November 2009, Barcelona, Spain
*IISD RS coverage of Selected Side Events at the Barcelona Climate Change Talks 2009, 2-6 November 2009, Barcelona, Spain
*IISD RS coverage of the Third International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation to Climate Change, 18-24 February 2009, Dhaka, Bangladesh
*IISD RS coverage of the Poznań Business Day, 9 December 2008, Poznań, Poland
*IISD RS summary of OEWG-26, 3-6 July 2006, Montréal, Canada (English: HTML - PDF) (Spanish: HTML - PDF)
*IISD RS archive of meetings on climate change, and backgrounder
*Climate-L - A mailing list for news on climate change policy
*Linkages Update - Bi-weekly international environment and sustainable development news
*MEA Bulletin - Newsletter on key MEAs and their secretariats
*Climate-L.org - News and information on the actions of international organizations in responding to the problem of global climate change
*African Regional Coverage
*Latin American and Caribbean Regional Coverage
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