by the end of 2009, undertake efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions as far as possible, and to analyse the cost implications and explore the budgetary modalities of purchasing carbon offsets to ultimately achieve climate neutrality.
Over the coming months and years, the EMG will be supporting these efforts in close cooperation with the UNEP’s Paris-based Division of Technology, Industry and Economics, which leads a facility called the Sustainable United Nations (SUN). Together they will provide assistance to the UN agencies to calculate their GHG emissions according to the highest environmental standards, develop individual agency’s plans for reducing their footprint, adopt a common approach for purchasing offsets, and also advance other
aspects related to greening the UN, such sustainable procurement.
by 2025 and to halve per capita transport emissions by 2040 by using electric cars and biofuels. Iceland aims to reduce its net greenhouse gas emissions – which come mainly from transport and industry – by 75 per cent before 2050. Carbon sequestration in vegetation is an important factor in Iceland’s climate strategy. It has suffered the worst soil erosion of any European country since its settlement 1100 years ago, with deforestation leaving the fragile volcanic soil at the mercy of wind and water erosion. Costa Rica is aiming for climate neutrality by 2021, to be achieved by taxes and incentives to protect forests and encourage carbon storage and sequestration.
The four cities signed up to CN Net are Arendal in Norway, Vancouver on the west coast of Canada, Växjö in southern Sweden and Rizhao in northern China. Ninety-nine per cent of urban households in Rizhao, Shandong province, have solar water heaters. The amount of energy used for each unit of economic output has fallen by almost a third on 2000 levels and CO2 emissions by almost half.
The latest wave of participants extends the initiative’s reach to small and medium enterprises, as well as international, non-governmental and research organizations. www.climateneutral.unep.org.