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Climate-L.org
Seventieth session of the UN Economic Commission for Europe Committee on Housing and Land Management

23-25 September 2009 | Geneva, Switzerland
 
Daily web highlights+
Wednesday, 23 September | Thursday, 24 September | Friday, 25 September

UNECE

Highlights for Wednesday,
23 September 2009


The 70th session of the UNECE Commission on Housing and Land Management (CHLM) opened today in Geneva, Switzerland. Delegates met for an all-day seminar on climate neutral cities.

Opening remarks were delivered by: Ján Kubiš, Executive Secretary, UNECE, by video message; Doris Andoni, CHLM Chair; Marco Keiner, Director of the UNECE Environment, Housing and Land Management Division; and Paola Deda, CHLM Secretariat.

The seminar comprised two sessions. The session on city planning and land use management was chaired by Corrado Clini, Italian Ministry of Environment, Land and Sea. Delegates heard a keynote presentation by Luis Pais Correia, Dalkia International, on the role of the private sector in fighting climate change. Seven other presentations were made, including on multi-modality assessments in promoting sustainable urban traffic, strategic guidelines for sustainable city development, and the role of urban forests. The presentations were followed by brief discussions.

In the afternoon, Zdrako Genchev, EnEffect Centre for Energy Efficiency (Bulgaria), chaired the session on the built environment. A keynote address was delivered by Wolfgang Feist, Passive House Institute (Germany), who discussed the benefits of passive house technology. Delegates heard eight other presentations on, inter alia, the renovation of the Empire State Building in New York, energy efficiency improvement in multi-family houses as part of urban development plans in Bulgaria, and green jobs for climate neutral cities. Several of the presenters elaborated on national experiences and pilot projects pertaining to energy efficient building. These topics were further discussed in brief question and answer sessions.

A view of the UN grounds at the Palais des Nations.
 
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Country place cards being prepared prior to the start of the meeting.
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Posters on housing and land management in the corridors.
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Opening Session:
 
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Ján Kubiš, Executive Secretary, United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), opened the seminar on Climate-Neutral Cities by video message. He called for a stronger focus on the housing sector in the post-Kyoto agreement of UNFCCC COP-15.

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Doris Andoni, Chair of the Committee on Housing and Land Management (CHLM), stressed the need to consider the local level in the climate change agenda.
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Marco Keiner, Director of the UNECE Environment, Housing and Land Management Division, underscored, inter alia, city production zones, transportation, green spaces, and urban agriculture.
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Paola Deda, CHLM Secretariat, stressed that climate change represents an opportunity to make cities sustainable, noting that the Kyoto Protocol provides a clear framework and measurable targets in this regard.
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City planning and land use management:
 
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Luis Pais Correia, Dalkia International, delivered a keynote presentation on the role of the private sector in fighting climate change.
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Corrado Clini, Italian Ministry of Environment, Land and Sea, chaired the session. He outlined projects that Italy is undertaking to reduce carbon emissions in the areas of building, urban planning and land management.
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Brigitte Dufour-Fallot, City Energy Counselor in Lausanne (Switzerland), elaborated on the Energy City Award, a European initiative aiming to promote energy efficiency in cities.
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Michael Denkel, Albert Speer and Partner GmbH (Germany), spoke on strategic guidelines for sustainable city development.
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Juha Hulkkonen, Global Business Services (Finland), reported on multi-modality assessments in promoting sustainable urban traffic.
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Nikolai Bobylev, Technical University of Berlin (Germany), addressed urban underground infrastructure (UUI) and climate change.
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Cecil Konijnendijk, University of Copenhagen (Denmark), spoke on the role of urban forests and trees.
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Mathieu Laperelle, K’nL Architecture (France), elaborated on a project aiming to build houses for settled nomads in the Alsace region, France.
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Peter Droege, Hochschule Liechtenstein, addressed global scenarios for greenhouse gas reduction.
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Presentation that noted the use of electric vehicles as one of the key drivers of a global energy transition.
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View of the plenary in session.
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The built environment:
 
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L-R: The dais of the afternoon session with Tzveta Naniova, UNDP; Wolfgang Foerster, Vienna Regional Housing Development; Erkin Boronbaev, Kyrgyz State University; Susan Roaf, Heriot Watt University; Zdravko Genchev, EnEffect; Martti Lujanen, Rapporteur; and Edmundo Werna, ILO.
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Paul Rode, Johnson Controls Inc. (US), underscored the need to take a whole-system, integrated approach when making existing buildings more energy efficient.
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Wolfgang Feist, Passive House Institute (Germany), said passive house technology may reduce energy consumption by 90%.
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Zdrako Genchev, EnEffect Centre for Energy Efficiency (Bulgaria), chaired this session, noting the reacceptance of planning since the immediate post-communist era.
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Charles Magnier, Prioriterre (France), introduced his organisation’s activities in the field of environmental sustainability.
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Andrew Waugh, Waugh Thistleton Architects Ltd. (UK), reported on a project to build a nine-story cross-laminated timber building.
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Susan Roaf, author of “Adapting Buildings and Cities to Climate Change,” described the paradox of modern buildings being less energy efficient and climate resilient despite the increasing threat of climate change
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Erkin Boronbaev, Kyrgyz State University of Construction, Transportation and Archiecture, called for the transfer of finances. and technology to developing countries.
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Tzveta Naniova, UN Development Programme Bulgaria, addressed energy efficiency improvement in multifamily houses as part of urban development plans in Bulgaria.
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Edmundo Werna, International Labour Organization, spoke on green jobs for climate neutral cities.
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Wolfgang Foerster, Vienna Regional Housing Department (Austria), underscored the contribution of UNECE to energy efficiency in housing, including in defining concepts, considering examples and lessons learned, and providing policy advice to the European region.
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Meeting rapporteur Martti Lujanen, Finnish Environment Ministry, reflected on the day’s discussions, stressing the importance of exchange of information and experiences between countries.

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Related Links
UNECE resources
Agenda of the 70th Session of the Committee
Documents for the 70th Session of the Committee
UNECE Committee on Housing and Land Management


IISD RS resources
IISD RS coverage of the International Conference on Green Industry in Asia: “Managing the transition to resource-efficient and low-carbon industries”, 9-11 September 2009, Manila, the Philippines

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