The Society for the Conservation of Nature of Liberia (SCNL), has participated in a three-day workshop in Ganta, Nimba County. The Environmental Protection Agency, (EPA), with support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), under the Climate Promise Phase II project, held the workshop from April 5-7, 2023. About fifty (50) participants from relevant Government ministries and agencies, as well as partners, donors, and academia, attended the workshop. The purpose of the training workshop was to prepare designated Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) focal points in the nine sectors.
SCNL presented active projects/activities that aligned with targets in five of the nine NDC sectors—forest, agriculture, health, energy, and coastal zones. SCNL has 17 projects supporting the implementation of Liberia’s NDC. Of the 1,713 are active while four have already ended. The projects range from Protected Areas establishment and management to restoration and overall biodiversity conservation as well as livelihood empowerment. According to the Sustainable Finance Coordinator of SCNL, although SCNL was presenting along with donors, the organization does not give grants out to other organizations to implement.
As a civil society organization, SCNL acts as an intermediary between the government and the communities and applies for grants to carry out work that complements the government’s efforts in biodiversity conservation and livelihood improvement. However, the organization is open to partnerships and working with all in ensuring biodiversity is sustainably managed through community participation.
About 38 mitigation and adaptation focal points from sectoral ministries, agencies, and commissions were trained on NDC monitoring, tracking, and reporting. During the workshop, an overview of Liberia’s NDC and sector activities linked to the NDC targets were highlighted, technical training of focal points on reporting on the NDC targets was provided, and development partners outlined their portfolios and projects that are supporting the implementation of Liberia’s NDC. The Society for the Conservation of Liberia was represented by its Executive Director, Mr. Michael F. Garbo, and the Sustainable Finance Coordinator, Sylvia Diamond Dorbor, who gave the presentation on behalf of SCNL.
There were welcome and introductory remarks from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) focal point and Manager for Multilateral Agreements, Mr. Jefferson Nyandibo. He expressed his gratitude for having designated focal points for all sectors in the NDC and urged policymakers to get involved and make themselves available to listen to the technicians. According to Mr. Nyandibo, unless policymakers are involved, we will not achieve anything as a country when it comes to NDC implementation.
Mr. Abraham Tumbey, Programme Coordinator, UNDP, gave the overview and objective of the training workshop. He expressed optimism in the workshop due to the number of experts in the room to drive the NDC. He described the focal persons as drivers of the vehicle and further stressed that the EPA alone cannot implement the NDC. Each of the nine sectors is represented by four experts—one expert on mitigation and an alternate, one expert on adaptation, and an alternative.
The workshop was held in a hybrid format and virtual participants included representatives from the NDC partnership, Ms. Margaret Barihari, and the UNFCCC Secretariat in Bonn, Germany who congratulated Liberia for the milestones achieved and expressed interest in supporting Liberia achieve its ambitious NDC.
Mr. Dorsla Farcarthy gave remarks from the NDC Partnership Support Unit on behalf of the Resident Representative of the UNDP, Stephen Rodriques. He recognized government representatives and focal points and reemphasized UNDP’s partnership and commitment to Liberia, which has been active since 1997 in both peace and crisis. According to Mr. Farcarthy, UNDP is committed to helping Liberia achieve the SDGs and national priorities.
“UNDP supported the NDC to include climate-sensitive sectors such as forests, agriculture, etc. under the joint implementation framework. UNDP also ensured that gender and youth were mainstreamed in the NDC as climate change will affect gender groups differently. UNDP pledged its support in tailoring programs and resources to support the implementation of the NDC taking into account capacity needs and supporting the government with activities around NDC policy and reporting to ensure Liberia reports on its commitment. We will respond every time we are called upon,” he added.
Special remarks were given by Prof. Benjamin Karmorh, Chief Technical Advisor, on behalf of the Director/CEO of the EPA, Prof. Wilson K. Tarpeh. He called for collaboration in the implementation of the NDC. He urged ministries to act upon the Ministerial Declaration and play relevant roles in implementing the NDC, as the task is far beyond just the EPA. He further urged all NDC sectors to develop bankable projects and take the lead in implementing them. He reminded me of everything about the Youth and Gender declarations of the NDC that were produced in Ganta and asked for an implementation declaration to be produced in Ganta also.
The NDC coordinator, John Kannah, focused on Liberia’s NDC and instruments to enhance its implementation. Dr. Mahmoud Solomon, an independent consultant, made a presentation outlining key commitments, the potential of the revised NDC, and the Implementation Plan. Mr. Abraham Tumbey of the UNDP gave a presentation on the NDC financing strategy—one of the two instruments developed to enhance the implementation of the NDC.
Deep Dive into Liberia Mitigation Sectors
Dr. Charles Ansumana gave an in-depth presentation on the nine sectors enshrined in the NDC as well as the targets, actions, and policy measures
Deep Dive into Liberia Adaptation Sectors
Prof. Benjamin Karmorh, Chief Technical Advisor of the Environmental Protection Agency of Liberia drilled participants through the targets, actions, and measures enshrined in the NDC for adaptation.