Back Back to Knowledge Hub

The centrality of transparency for the Paris Agreement: A wrap-up of ICAT events at COP26 

6 December 2021

Across the two weeks of COP26, ICAT either hosted or co-hosted, supported or spoke at a total of eleven events, showcasing the impact of transparency activities in its partner countries.

As the first global in-person event after two years, COP26 brought many streams of ICAT work together and demonstrated the contribution of ICAT country projects in advancing NDCs, proving the centrality of transparency under the Paris Agreement. Transparency thus got the recognition that it deserves, and needs, at the policymaker-level and in some cases, even at ministerial or head of Government level. Discussions at COP26 confirmed that transparency-related work goes beyond the technical GHG inventory perspective and has a focus that is forward-looking, policy-relevant and encompasses links to sustainable development priorities.

Attention is now shifting from evidence-based policy development in the context of designing NDCs to NDC implementation, where data and robust tracking frameworks will be needed for tracking progress (as foreseen in the Paris Agreement’s Enhanced Transparency Framework), evaluating policy effectiveness (as a basis for improving domestic policies and strengthening NDC targets in the next revision), and, importantly, mobilizing finance and engaging stakeholders to ensure results on the ground.

For more information about any of the events, projects or partnerships included below, please contact the ICAT Secretariat.

Mozambique’s updated NDC launch (1 November)

Image credit: Club of Mozambique

To support the official launch of the country’s updated NDC, ICAT’s Director contributed as a guest speaker and acknowledged the great progress made by Mozambique in developing an institutional framework and related capacity for MRV. Prime Minister Carlos Agostinho do Rosario acknowledged the value of data to ensure policy effectiveness and thanked ICAT for its support.

Read more

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Regional Unity in Combating Climate Change in Central Asia (2 November)

Alongside Ministers and other high-level speakers from the region, the ICAT Director addressed a high-level event on the Regional Unity in Combating Climate Change within the framework of the 26th session of the Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The five Central Asian Member States are determined to advance on climate action as part of a multilateral approach, which is fully aligned with the approach of ICAT to create a regional climate action transparency hub for Central Asia.

Read more 

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Pre-launch event for the Regional Climate Action Transparency Hub for Central African States (4 November)

In light of the upcoming launch of the Regional Climate Action Transparency Hub (ReCATH) for Central African States, a side event at the “Fond Bleu du Bassin du Congo” Pavilion convened high-level guests, including H.E. Arlette Soudan-Nonault, the Minister of Tourism and Environment for the Republic of Congo, H.E. Pierre Hélé, Minister of the Environment, Nature Protection and Sustainable Development for Cameroon, and H.E. Dr. Honoré Tabuna, Commissioner for Environment, Natural Resources, Agriculture and Sustainable Development of the Economic Community of Central African States Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS),  as well as officials from various countries from the region.

The ReCATH for Central African States aims to build capacity and create a network in the region to support member countries in their efforts to improve and build sustainable and comprehensive transparency systems.  Speakers at the event recognized the importance of increased capacity in the region to enable governments to actively build a sustainable and climate-smart future. With enhanced MRV, governments will be able to: adequately support their national decision-making processes regarding climate policies; reach out to investors and other stakeholders in implementing mitigation and adaptation actions; and meet the reporting requirements under the Paris Agreement.

View event recording

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

The monitoring and evaluation system for adaptation in Panama – Signing of Memorandum of Understanding between Panama and ICAT (4 November)

Panama organized an event on monitoring and evaluation for adaptation, presenting its own approach and that of Chile and Costa Rica. At the core of this event was the recognition of the benefits of integrating adaptation into an overarching climate data framework. This enables, for instance, building synergy between mitigation and adaptation actions.

In the context of the event, H.E. Mr. Milciades Concepción, Minister of Environment of Panama and the ICAT Director signed an MoU to launch an ICAT project which will cover the second stage of developing Panama’s adaptation monitoring and evaluation system.

More information (Spanish)

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

UNFCCC side event on “Support opportunities available to developing country Parties for implementing MRV arrangements under the Convention and the ETF under the Paris Agreement” (6 November)

ICAT’s Director joined a distinguished group of panelists at an official UNFCCC side event that highlighted ways of supporting developing countries enhance transparency to drive climate and development goals. The focus of the discussion was on how to secure funding for capacity building in countries.  The ICAT Director encouraged countries to build national transparency frameworks with a primary view to the domestic needs for strong climate data, and to use international support to create the human, institutional and IT infrastructure that could subsequently be operated through national entities.

View event recording

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

ICAT Advisory Committee meeting (7 November)

On the sidelines of COP26, ICAT’s Advisory Committee came together to discuss ICAT’s progress and activities in 2021 as well as plans for 2022 with upcoming iterations of the e-Learning course and the further development of ICAT’s Toolbox, including the development of guides related to climate finance and air pollution.

For more information about the ICAT Toolbox, please visit the ICAT website.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

ICAT Partner Roundtable and Reception (8 November)

For the first time in more than 18 months, ICAT’s global network of partners was able to come together  in person to share lessons learnt, key results and experiences with different ICAT tools and methodologies. The 3-hour event brought together the many different voices that make up ICAT – partner countries, implementing partners, and members of the donor steering and advisory committees – around some key issues affecting countries and institutions in a practical way. Such interventions were related to activities in Chile, Nigeria, and around the IPCC guidelines and indicators.

For more information, please contact the ICAT Secretariat.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Final #Data4BetterClimateAction showcase event (9 November)

With a programme full of high-level speakers, the final showcase event for the #Data4BetterClimateAction campaign aimed to inspire participants about the added value of transparency in order to take the next steps, both politically and practically, to further enhance their country’s transparency frameworks in a targeted manner.

View event recording

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

COP26 Catalyst: Presentation of the Action Recommendations (9 November)

Image credit: Robin Hart (WIlton Park)

After an almost six-month series of regional and global conversations to better understand the capacity-building challenges faced by developing countries as they prepare to implement the Paris Agreement, the COP26 Catalyst initiative presented a set of action recommendations.

As a technical partner to the initiative, ICAT was invited to present a number of the agreed action recommendations for transparency and reporting. Other recommendations related to adaptation communications, participation in carbon markets, and access to finance.

View the recommendations for transparency

View event recording 

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Launch event for the Regional Climate Action Transparency Hub for Central Asian States (10 November)

Bringing together stakeholders from across the region, ICAT and the Regional Environmental Center for Central Asia (CAREC) held a side event to launch the Regional Climate Action Transparency Hub (ReCATH) for Central Asian States. Presentations included an overview of ICAT and an overview of the goals of the Hub and its activities by CAREC. It also featured the signing of the grant agreement, signifying the official start to the three-year project.

View event recording

More information

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Monitoring air pollution and health benefits within climate change MRV systems (10 November)

This side event at WHO’s Health Pavilion presented to participants work on Integrating Short-Lived Climate Pollutants and Air Pollution into Climate Change Monitoring and Transparency Frameworks, based on a draft guide under development by ICAT and the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CACC), with the support of the Stockholm Environment Institute, Aether and other partners. The guide, to be finalized in the second quarter of 2022, will present concrete steps for developing countries to integrate air pollutant and health benefits into their climate monitoring and policy evaluation efforts. The event showcased relevant activities in Colombia and Nigeria.

For more information about the guide, please contact the ICAT Secretariat.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Official side event co-hosted by Chad, Nigeria, and TERI (India) (11 November)

At ICAT’s main side event at COP26, a panel of speakers from ICAT partner countries Nigeria, Chad, Costa Rica and India (TERI) and from Germany’s Federal Ministry of the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety discussed the role of transparency for countries’ NDCs.

Moderated by Justin Johnson from the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation with opening and closing remarks by the ICAT Director,  the event demonstrated how attention is now shifting from evidence-based policy development (i.e. designing NDCs) to implementation, where data will be needed for tracking progress (as foreseen in the ETF), evaluating policy effectiveness (as a basis for strengthening targets in a next revision), and, importantly, mobilizing finance and engaging stakeholders to ensure actual results on the ground. The country examples provided a strong account of the relevance of transparency at different levels ranging from ministry officials to a parliamentarian to civil society and subnational actors.

View event recording

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Progress check-ins with 31 ICAT partner countries (1-12 November)

Throughout the two weeks of COP26, the ICAT Secretariat held a total of 31 bilateral meetings with partner countries to discuss progress, flag issues, identify the potential for phase II/III work and welcome new countries to kick off work plan discussions. The Secretariat met with: Algeria, Angola, Antigua & Barbuda, Belarus, Bhutan, Brazil, Cambodia, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Cuba, Ecuador, Eswatini, Fiji, Ghana, India, Kenya, Liberia, Maldives, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Panama, Peru, Rwanda, Senegal, Sri Lanka, Uganda, and Zimbabwe.

More information

The centrality of transparency for the Paris Agreement: A wrap-up of ICAT events at COP26