United Nations Environment Programme
Tacking climate change through sustainable waste management
Although minor levels of emissions are released through waste treatment and disposal, the prevention and recovery of wastes avoids emissions in all sectors of the economy. It is estimated that a reduction of 15 to 20% of worldwide green-house gases (GHG) emiss ions could be achieved through sustainable waste management.
With more extreme weather and an increasing occurrence of natural disasters, climate change is going to challenge severely our current ways of consumption and the way we will manage waste. It is therefore urgent to address this issue now, before the situation worsens further.
If we can’t address the current waste challenges, how are we going to address the future ones?
Bangkok, December 2017
For this purpose, IETC supports both, national and local governments in creating an enabling legislative, financial and technological environment for the introduction and uptake of environmentally sound technologies (ESTs) in the waste sector.
In the long-term, this will enable reductions of GHGs and SLCPs emissions from the waste sector and contribute to achieve the country's climate change mitigation pledge.
In June 2017, IETC will begin the implementation of a climate mitigation project in Bhutan, Mongolia and Nepal. The 4-year project will aim at improving waste mangement practices, focusing on emissions reduction. The project will also work with the three countries to catalyze further climate financing for sustainable and greater impacts.
With a budget of Euro 2,500,000, this project financed by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) and UN Environment is hoped to have a decisive impact on long term trajectories of the three countries, by:
Waste and Climate Change, Global Trends and Strategy Framework
United Nations Environment Programme (2010)
The sound management of waste can have substantial co-benefits for efforts to address climate change. As a first step to realize these co-benefits, this report seeks - To examine the potential of climate impacts and benefits of different waste management activities. - To present a UNEP-led framework strategy to assist countries in prioritizing their resources and efforts for waste management and climate change mitigation. The framework strategy is intended to align with the internationally recognized waste management hierarchy, in which waste prevention receives the highest priority, to optimize the co-benefits for climate change mitigation. The Governing Council of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has directed its International Environmental Technology Centre (IETC) branch to take action in the area of waste management.
Strengthening the capacity of policymakers in Bhutan, Mongolia, and Nepal to reduce greenhouse gases (GHGs) and short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) from the waste sector based on circular economy concept
In June 2017, the International Environmental Technology Centre began the implementation of a climate change mitigation project in Bhutan, Mongolia, and Nepal. Through this 4-year project, IETC supports both, national and local governments in the three countries in creating an enabling legislative, financial, and technological environment for the introduction and uptake of environmentally sound technologies (ESTs) in the waste sector.
In the long-term, this project will enable reductions of GHGs and SLCPs emissions from the waste sector. This will be accomplished through specific policy improvements, the identification of suitable environmentally sound technologies to mitigate GHGs and SLCPs emissions from the waste sector, and the development of bankable project proposals for the demonstration of the identified ESTs.
With a budget of Euro 2,500,000 funded by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) and IETC, this project will increase the ability of Bhutan, Mongolia, and Nepal in achieving their mitigation commitments (Nationally Determined Contributions) by initiating behavioural change, engaging the private sector, and fostering political will.
Project reports, lessons learned, and case studies will be easily accessible with the aim of incentivizing replications of similar efforts.
STATE OF IMPLEMENTATION
Global Recycling Day 2018
On 18 March 2018, the occasion of the ever fist Global Recycling Day, a range of activities were organized with the aim to "learn by having fun" about the importance of sustainable resource management. Activities were supported by Waste and Climate Change Project.
Waste Management Improvement Strategies and Action Plans for Mongolia and Ulaanbaatar
The Waste Management Improvement Strategies and Action Plans for Mongolia and its capital city Ulaanbaatar have been launched on 20 July 2017. The strategies are the result of a close collaboration with the Ministry of Environment and Tourism of Mongolia and the Asian Institute of Technology, Regional Resource Centre for Asia and the Pacific (AIT RRC.AP), with the financial contribution of IETC and the Government of Japan.
Training of policy makers from Bhutan, Mongolia, and Nepal
As part of the Waste and Climate Change project, from 11 to 15 December 2017 a five-day training of policy makers from Bhutan, Mongolia, and Nepal on how to achieve long-term reductions of greenhouse gas emissions and short-lived climate pollutants from the waste sector took place in Bangkok, Thailand. The training was organized jointly by IETC and the Asian Institute of Technology, Regional Resource Centre for Asia and the Pacific (AIT RRC.AP).
Through a mix of interactive learning methodologies including lectures, peer-learning sessions, and field visits, participants gained a better understanding of the tools available to select suitable environmentally sound technologies and to improve waste management systems. Participants were also trained on current opportunities in climate financing.
The photos of the training are available here.
International Climate Initiative:
The Asia Foundation, Waste and Climate Change Project:
For more information, please contact IETC's focal point on Climate Change:
Ms. Claudia Giacovelli