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Japan steps in to help Laos cut carbon emission

Laos and Japan have looked to strengthen bilateral cooperation on reducing carbon emissions in Laos by transferring low carbon technologies to the country.

Experts discussed the prospective cooperation with Lao private sector companies in Vientiane yesterday, aiming to share experiences on the transfer of low carbon technologies.

The discussion was held under the cooperation framework on National Appropriate Mitigation Action (NAMA) and Joint Crediting Mechanism (JCM), an agreement which the Lao and Japanese reached last year, aiming to build the another cooperation project alongside the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM).

"We are about to build the facilities for sharing experience between the businesses from Laos and Japan, aiming to build more joint cooperation projects in this regard," Director of Management and Coordination Division under the Department of Disaster Management and Climate Change Syamphone Sengchandala said in his opening remarks.

The Lao government aims to bring the country out of least developed status by 2020, and is embarking on a path of green growth.

Syamphone explained that NAMA, JCM, and CDM have the same concept of mitigating greenhouse gas emissions caused by human activities which come from the energy sector, primarily as a result of burning fossil fuels .

"This is about bilateral cooperation between Laos and Japan concerning the issue," he said.

The participants at the introduction meeting included the Lao Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Japanese Overseas Environmental Cooperation Centre (OECC), and various businesses.

They discussed climate change mitigation action in Laos and future perspectives, a Laos-Japan joint project and the environmental mission in Laos.

Also raised was the recycling of used tempura oil to 'C Fuel’, the alternative fuel for light oil, bio treatment plus biomass gasification plant, and waste utilisation in cement plants.

Laos joined the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change on April 1995, and signed the Kyoto Protocol on February 2003.

The country is implementing a policy to secure a future where it is capable of mitigating and adapting to changing climatic conditions in a way that promotes sustainable economic development, reduces poverty, and protects public health and safety.

At the meeting, head of researchers from OECC, Makoto Kato noted the Japanese desire to help Laos in regards to air purification and implementing its international obligations.

The discussion received support from the Japanese Ministry of Environment.

According to the UN Escap's Statistical Yearbook for Asia-Pacific 2013, Laos’ greenhouse gas emissions rose from 7.1 tonnes in 1990 to 15.6 tonnes in 2010, which is slightly above the average of 6.1 tonnes in Asia-Pacific, but lower than the global average of 7.1 tonnes. Laos' ratio was the highest among Asean nations, while the lowest, at 1.7 tonnes, was Singapore.

Asia-Pacific was the only region that witnessed a continued increase, while other parts of the world led by Europe managed to bring down emissions.

"Growing wealth and consumption across the world has contributed to global CO2 concentrations increasing by an average of 2ppm during the past decade. As concentrations depend on emissions accumulated over time, ambitious targets and urgent action are needed to reverse the rise of concentrations in the atmosphere," the yearbook said.


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