Experts call for greater global support for Nepal’s Mountain Initiative

26 Sep 2010


The two-day International Expert Consultation Meeting: Mountain Initiative on Climate Change organised by the Government of Nepal Ministry of Environment (MoE) and the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) on 23-24 September 2010 in Kathmandu concluded with a clarion call for greater global support and partnership to protect mountain ecosystems and their services from the growing impacts of climate and associated global changes. The gathering of more than 40 experts from 16 mountain countries, including major Himalayan countries and other stakeholders, concluded on Friday. After two days of intensive sharing and discussions on the latest information about the impacts of climate change on the world’s mountains, the experts developed a set of recommendations to the proposed Ministerial Conference of the Mountain Countries on Climate Change, future UNFCCC negotiations, the Rio+20 conference, and related international events beyond 2012. The experts agreed on the following:

  1. Establishment of a Contact Group based on the membership of the participating countries in this expert meeting to share the conclusions of the meeting, as well as to raise the awareness of the key stakeholders in the respective countries and contribute to the UNFCCC COP meetings, International Conference and Rio+20 Conference;
  2. Establishment of a Technical Working Group comprising representatives from Nepal (Dr Dinesh Chandra Devkota, Member, National Planning Commission, and Dr Ganesh R. Joshi, Secretary, Ministry of Environment), Peru, Kazakhstan, and Columbia, as well as Dr R.S. Tolia from India and Mr John Drexhage of Canada as independent members, and representatives from the Mountain Partnership, ICIMOD, and the World Bank.

The meeting also decided to request the mountain countries to nominate a focal institution and person in each country so that Nepal’s plan to hold the Ministerial Conference next year can be organised in a more effective and productive manner. The experts also emphasised the need to launch more effective capacity building and advocacy activities, regionally and globally, using the recommendations of the international experts to promote the inclusion of a mountain specific funding priority within the UNFCCC financing documents starting from the preparatory meeting of the Parties in China and the COP 16 meeting in Cancun, Mexico. The organisers of the meeting – MoE and ICIMOD -- plan to use the endorsement of the Mountain Initiative of the Govt. of Nepal to prepare for the international ministerial conference by organising regional consultation meetings and building the capacity of the mountain countries, including Nepal, to raise a coordinated and stronger voice at future international climate negotiations in 2010 and beyond, and the Rio+20 meetings.

Closing the expert meeting, Dr Dinesh Chandra Devkota, Member of the National Planning Commission, expressed satisfaction at the results and expressed Nepal’s commitment to raise mountain issues in future COP meetings drawing greater international support. Dr Andreas Schild, speaking on behalf of ICIMOD, felt that a very important first step had been taken in the process of getting the mountain agenda into the global climate agenda, and committed to supporting Nepal to take the mountain agenda further by offering greater technical support in knowledge development and capacity building. The Secretary of the MoE Dr Ganesh Raj Joshi, informed all that the Govt. of Nepal is planning to organise the ministerial meeting successfully before March 2011, and called on all to support his ministry in this endeavour.

For more information please contact:
Dr Madhav B. Karki
Deputy Director General, ICIMOD

Dr Bhaskar Karky
Resource Economist, ICIMOD