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Major Boost for Uganda’s Capacity to Track Greenhouse Gas Emissions

June 22, 2020

By Ally Jamah

Uganda’s commitment  to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by 22% by 2030 and contribute to global targets under the Paris Agreement  received a major boost following the official handover of a robust GHG Inventory and Monitoring, Reporting Verification (MRV) systems on June 16th and the online graduation of 60+ national experts on GHG data management.

This was achieved under the Capacity Building Initiative for Transparency (CBIT) project funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) through Conservation International (CI) and implemented by the Ministry of Water and Environment through the Climate Change Department (CCD) and the Africa Innovations Institute(AfrII), in collaboration with CI's Vital Signs programme. CBIT seeks to “Strengthen the Capacity of Institutions in Uganda to comply With the Transparency Requirements of the Paris Agreement.”

The inventory handover and graduation ceremony were conducted via video conferencing, in observance of government restrictions on public gatherings to curb likely spread of Covid-19. The GHG and MRV trainings were also conducted online over several months by Aether and  Nexus International University.

The GHG inventories and MRV systems focus on 5 key GHG emitting sectors including Energy and transport, Agriculture, Forestry and Land Use (AFOLU)Industrial Processes and Product Use (IPPU), and Waste. As a signatory to the Paris agreement, Uganda is required to provide accurate information to track progress towards her commitment to reduce global emissions by 22% by 2030 compared to business-as-usual scenario. The GHG emissions data must be collected in line with guidelines of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a UN body mandated to provide scientific information about climate change.

“This is a huge milestone for Uganda; the country now has robust institutional and technical capacity to monitor its GHG emissions trends from key sectors in line with verifiable international standards. This will support appropriate interventions to curb the emissions,” said Dr. Peter Alele, Senior Regional Director, Conservation International(CI), Africa.

CI Africa's Senior Technical Manager Mr. Victor Esendi said: “The CBIT project has provided the necessary equipment and capacity building to have a GHG Inventory that meets the country needs and developed by Ugandan experts; this meets the goal of capacity building as envisioned by CBIT.”

On his part, AfrII CEO Prof. Otim-Nape said: “The sector experts must regularly meet to share information to keep the inventory updated. It is also upon the sector experts to synthesize their reports to inform policy and organize briefing of policy makers within their sectors." 

In March this year, MWE signed GHG data-sharing MOUs and an inter-Ministerial cooperation agreement with ministries and government institutions from key emission sectors to ease collection of GHG data for the inventory. The move established a national data sharing framework that would have otherwise taken a lengthy process of developing a national policy to achieve.

According to Uganda's September 2019 Biennial Update Report (BUR) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the country’s climate mitigation actions will have “a range of positive human health, ecosystem functioning, macroeconomic, social, and/or equity side effects. In some cases, these co-benefits outweigh the importance of climate change mitigation benefits.” Historically, the AFOLU sector (Agriculture, Forestry and other Land Use) has remained the most significant emission source followed by the energy sector.

CBIT Uganda's 3 key outcomes were: Support establishment and strengthening the institutional arrangements for robust GHG emission inventory and MRV system, build capacity of key stakeholders to collect, process and feed gender disaggregated data into the GHG emissions inventory system and test and pilot the Green House Gas (GHG) Emission Inventory and Monitoring Reporting Verification (MRV) system.

For more information, please contact Mr. Victor Esendi, Senior Technical Manager, Conservation International, Africa Field Division vesendi@conservation.org