Monday, October 7, 2013

ASIA LEDS 2013 : Low Emission Development Can Deliver Better Quality of Life

Manila, Philippines, October 5, 2013 – Approximately 250 government officials, practitioners, and experts gathered at the second annual Asia Low Emission Development Strategies (LEDS) Forum in Manila, Philippines during October 1-4, 2013 to discuss and share best practices, tools, and ideas for achieving sustainable, climate-smart development in the largest and fastest growing region of the world. Participants came from 22 Asian and Pacific countries, and were joined by representatives from countries in Africa, North America, South America, and Europe.

Opening the event, Mr. Naderev Saño, Commissioner of the Philippines Climate Change Commission, recounted his morning commute on Manila’s mass transit rail system, noting that people want clean, efficient transport and other elements of a high quality of life, and that a low-emission development path can and must address these needs. In the keynote address, Secretary Mary Ann Lucille L. Sering, Commissioner and Vice Chairperson of the Climate Change Commission, described the acute vulnerability of the Philippines to climate change, and the actions the Philippines government are taking to grow economically in a way that increases climate-resilience and reduces the growth in greenhouse gas emissions.

Under the theme of “Putting LEDS into Practice”, sessions over the four days of the forum included panel discussions and break out groups where participants shared experiences, lessons, and viewpoints of how governments, international organizations, civil society groups, and the private sector are working at different levels and in different sectors to find solutions to the challenges of low-emission, green growth.

One highlight of the forum was a trade show-style session in which 16 different organizations and agencies set up displays to showcase a variety of LEDS tools and good practices, including a multimedia, three-dimensional model developed by the USAID Philippines and the Philippines Climate Change Commission entitled “LEDS @ Work”. (see photo above)

The Asia LEDS Partnership organized the forum, in cooperation with the Philippines Climate Change Commission and the USAID Philippines, Asian Development Bank (ADB), Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), LEDS Global Partnership Secretariat, USAID Lowering Emissions in Asia’s Forest (LEAF) program, World Bank Institute, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN), Vietnam Ministry of Planning and Investment, Center for Study of Science, Technology and Policy (CSTEP) of India, and Clean Air Asia.

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