Statement delivered by Shoko Noda, UNDP Country Director during the Signing Ceremony of the “Ecosystem Based Adaptation in mountain ecosystem in Nepal” (EBA) project document

16 Aug 2012

Respected chairperson, Secretary of Ministry of Forest and Soil Conservation, Mr. Krishna Chandra Poudyal,

Joint Secretary of Ministry of Forest and Soil conservation, Mr. Hari Har Sighdel,

IUCN Country Director Dr Y. B. Mall,

Distinguished government officials,

Partners and colleagues

It is indeed my pleasure that we have gathered here today to sign the Project Document for the “Ecosystem Based Adaptation in mountain ecosystem in Nepal” Project.

I would like to thank the Government of Nepal, especially the Ministry of Forest and Soil Conservation and the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology for their active involvement in designing and finalizing this project document.  The ministries have not only been actively involved in all stages of project formulation but they have also shown a strong commitment towards building the knowledge base of the country in Ecosystem Based Adaptation sector. Through the finalization of this project document, the country has certainly taken significant strides in strengthening and moving ahead with their climate change adaptation agenda.

As we are aware, Nepal is one of the most vulnerable countries towards the impacts of climate change. The mountain ecosystem is especially vulnerable and therefore needs robust steps to deal with the impacts. Through this project we will be able to demonstrate climate resilience of mountain ecosystem through improved biodiversity and ecosystem services while enhancing people’s livelihood. I am confident that the project outcomes will be valuable for future climate adaptation initiatives of the country, and will also contribute to national policies and strategies.

I would like to thank the Department of Forests for taking the lead in implementing this project. The department’s expertise in this sector and their effective leadership will lead this project to its success and we will be able to show case our success in adaptation implementation through our field initiatives.

I am also pleased that the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology is taking the lead in coordinating the project’s learning at the national and global level. I am sure that by the end of this project we will be able to bring clarity on EBA both conceptually and practically. Dealing with the impacts of climate change is one of the greatest challenges we face. This project is one of the first on Ecosystem Based Adaptation and the knowledge gained will be crucial for the country as well as for the rest of the world. With the focal ministry for climate change taking the lead for coordination, I am confident that the project outcomes will be reflected in future climate change and natural resource related policies.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank our partners, UNEP and IUCN , at the national, regional and international level. This partnership has provided the opportunity to merge our strengths and provide complimentary support to help ensure the success of the project.   I would also like to thank the Government of Germany for their financial support.

Finally, I would like to say that environment and energy, and climate change is one of the important areas of UNDP’s work. I would like to assure you of UNDP’s continued support for the effective and successful implementation of this project.