High Level Assembly concerning climate and clean air during COP19/CMP9

On November 21st  during the 19th UNFCCC Conference of Parties meeting of High Level Assembly of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC) took place. Poland which joined the Coalition in February 2013 presented their achievements regarding the climate and air protection.

Commitments to take action toward a worldwide green freight movement, oil and gas methane partnership and other concrete steps to reduce short-lived climate pollutants emerged from today’s High Level Assembly meeting. The Coalition also announced several decisions addressing some of the leading causes of climate change, premature death, crop damage and ecosystem degradation.

We are proud that Poland is a member of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition to Reduce Short-Lived Climate Pollutants – CCAC. We consider it an important forum for action and exchange of knowledge and experiences related to the reduction of pollutants other than carbon dioxide, which threaten human health or contribute to poor harvests. Air protection and improvement of air quality are Polish priorities; therefore, I am pleased that the discussion about short-lived climate pollutants, which are the focus of the Coalition's activity, accompanies the COP19/CMP9 Climate Summit – said Beata Jaczewska, Undersecretary of State, Ministry of the Environment, head of Polish delegation to COP19/CMP9.

Ms. Jaczewska referred to some issues discussed in the course of the meeting. One of them was raised by the High Level Assembly and endorsed Green Freight Call to Action which underlined Partners’ determination to improve the energy efficiency and environmental performance of freight operations worldwide.

Poland's stance towards this initiative was determined as positive. Beata Jaczewska underlined the importance of propagating transport which is efficient not only in terms of energy and environment, but also costs. However she expressed that opinion that adoption of the Green Freight Call to Action declaration should be preceded by discussion and conclusions that should be reflected in the document.

Moreover, she presented Polish achievements regarding the climate and air protection. In 2011 Poland lowered the emission by 30% in comparison to 1988. Under the Kyoto Protocol, Poland was required to reduce emissions by 6%. Nowadays there are 42 air protection programs in Poland. Between 2006 and 2010 7,6 billion PLN (2,4 billion USD) were spent only on nationwide programs. These actions slowly achieve desired results. As the Inspection of Environmental Protection reports in research for 2012, the air quality steady gets better. In spite of that the Ministry of the Environment still initiate additional actions.

Poland has been involved in actions aimed at improving air quality for years, and has been implementing programmes aimed at reducing emissions, including short-lived climate pollutants. We implement EU regulations, raise air quality standards across the country, and want to participate in similar initiatives worldwide. We are going to continue our actions, and I believe that our involvement in the forum will be a valuable experience to Poland and other members of the Coalition – said Beata Jaczewska.

One of the recent achievements of the National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management, an subsidary institution of Polish Ministry of Environment,  is the launch of the “Kawka” program - worth ca. USD 260 million which will contribute to black carbon reduction. The program focuses on support for increased energy efficiency and development of dispersed renewable energy sources.

Poland implements the Green Investment Scheme with great success, which consists in using the funds for aims associated with gas emission reduction. One of the examples of projects implemented under the Green Investment Scheme is “Gazela” project concerning low-emission urban transport. Thus the project is consistent with the objectives of the CCAC regarding emission reduction from heavy duty diesel vehicles and engines.

Undersecretary of State in Poland's Ministry of the Environment, head of Polish delegation to COP19/CMP9 also underlined that the Coalition should aim at winning new members since only global efforts involving as many worldwide countries and organisations as possible, may ensure achievement of the set objectives. She strengthened as well that Poland recognises the need to involve the Central and Eastern European countries in the Coalition in order to fully use the potential of the region.

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CCAC is an institution focused on decline of methane, soot and chlorfluorcarbon (HFC) emission-intense. In practice it involves reduction of soot emission and other pollutions in the process of brick production, reduction of diesel engine soot emission, reduction methane emission from waste tips facilities, reduction of methane and soot emission in oil & gas production and finally reduction of household emissions as well as individual heat sources.

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