Promoting parliamentary engagement on climate change in Burundi

Around two hundred Members of the Burundi Parliament took part in a workshop to promote parliamentary engagement in climate change related actions in the country. The workshop, held on 22nd March in Bujumbura, was organised by the Burundi National Assembly in conjunction with the Inter-Parliamentary Union and UN Environment. It was attended by the President of the National Assembly and the two Deputy Speakers of the Senate and National Assembly.

The workshop opened with some briefing on anthropogenic climate change causes and impacts in the Burundian context. LRI gave presentations on the Paris Agreement and the rules for its implementation (the so-called Rulebook) adopted at COP24, in December 2018, and highlighted those areas where more work will need to be done this year.

The next presentation focussed on the implications of the Paris Agreement and Rulebook for Burundi, with Ms. Renilde Ndayishimiye, until recently UNFCCC focal point for Burundi, introducing participants to the country’s nationally determined contribution and highlighting actions needed to fully implement the Agreement, and challenges and opportunities related to this.

The meeting provided an opportunity to showcase LRI’s new climate legislation advice portal, developed in collaboration with UN Environment, as a resource tool for parliamentarians and government policy makers engaged in law review and development at domestic level. The final session in invited participants to discuss ways in which parliamentarians can further support climate action in Burundi through legislation and institutional reforms.

Workshop report on the National Assembly website

Legal preparedness for the implementation of the Paris Agreement – Roundtable workshop in Lagos

Over 40 law and policy makers attended a one-day roundtable workshop on the legal preparedness for the implementation of the Paris Agreement on 14 March 2019 in Lagos, Nigeria. Workshop participants included representatives of various government departments and agencies, academia, civil society and the private sector. Most of the participants were lawyers and many travelled to Lagos from other parts of Nigeria (e.g. Abuja and the Ogun, Oyo, Delta, and Abia States).

The meeting was organised by the Environmental Resource Centre (ERC) in Lagos in close collaboration with LRI. Important technical and financial support was provided by Advocates for International Development (A4ID) under the UK Aid sponsored Rule of Law Expertise (Role UK) Programme.

The objective of the meeting was to introduce the 2015 Paris Agreement and the rules for its implementation as adopted in 2018 (the so called Paris Agreement Rulebook) and analyse their implications for Nigeria. Law and policy makers who attended the workshop will be able to champion climate responses at the Federal and state level, and in that context, ensure that Nigeria will benefit from provisions of the new agreement.

The meeting included three technical presentations by Huzi Mshelia (ERC), Christoph Schwarte (LRI) and Dr Peter Tarfa, the UNFCCC focal point for Nigeria. During his presentation, the latter underlined the need for legal and technical support in the international climate negotiations as well as in domestic efforts to implement the Paris Agreement.

In response, participants of the meeting agreed to establish a Legal Working Group (LWG) on climate governance in Nigeria to support the national government in the UNFCCC process and in strengthening domestic legislation. The group will include legal advisers from different Federal and State ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs), the private sector, NGOs and academia.

Workshop on legal readiness for climate finance

On Friday 25 January, LRI in collaboration with the Dickson Poon School of Law and UN Environment facilitated a round table workshop on legal readiness for climate finance at King’s College, London.

To respond to the adverse effects of climate change, developing countries require significant new and additional financial resources. Industrialised countries have promised to take the lead in mobilising climate finance. To date, however, many poor and particularly climate vulnerable developing countries do not only lack the financial resources for crucial adaptation actions but even the funds required to create the basic institutional governance framework for mainstreaming climate change into general law and policy making.

The roundtable workshop brought together regulators, academics and practitioners to discuss lessons learnt and approaches in different jurisdictions on how to increase flows of private capital. Different sessions looked at the role regulators can play, the development of a climate finance toolkit and specific approaches to raising climate finance.  Oscar Njugune of Kenya’s International Financial Centre Authority commented on the workshop: “Certainly from a Kenyan policy making perspective it has provided me with some key action items to take forward, as well as opened up communication channels with a number of important stakeholders with whom we can take forward discussions on a bilateral basis.”