Nitrogen4NetZero set to broaden SL’s climate action
'Nitrogen4NetZero' initiative was launched on 29 April in partnership between the British High Commission, Colombo and the Government.
The UK will host United Nation's Climate Change Conference 2021 (COP26) in Glasgow later this year, and as the incoming presidency is committed to working with Sri Lanka to accelerate climate ambition in 2020 and 2021 and the action on nitrogen will offer multiple co-benefits for health, nature and economy.
Minister Dinesh Gunawardena at the meeting said that Climate scientists have been studying and grappling with the impact of increased carbon dioxide emissions in the atmosphere for decades. "I believe it is important to address the issue of nitrogen waste in a similarly urgent way, and to broaden the ongoing discourse on climate change accordingly," he said.
At COP26, the UK will demonstrate the urgency and the opportunities of the journey towards a zero carbon economy and the power of international cooperation to address the gravest challenges the world faces. To ensure success countries need to commit to reaching net zero carbon emissions as soon as possible.
However, the transition to net zero emissions will also require action on nitrogen to reduce nitrous oxide, a greenhouse gas with a global warming potential around 300 times that of carbon dioxide. A focus on reducing nitrogen pollution offers multiple win-wins across sustainable development for air, water, biodiversity, stratospheric ozone depletion, soils, food and the economy. These issues have been recognised by the UN Environment Assembly Resolution on ‘Sustainable Nitrogen Management’ (UNEP/EA.4/Res.14), led by India, and the Colombo Declaration led by Sri Lanka, which agreed an ambition to halve nitrogen waste from all sources by 2030, offering the potential to save USD 100 billion annually.
The #Nitrogen4NetZero initiative with member countries of the South Asian Cooperative Environment Programme (SACEP) prepares the way to widen engagement in this crucial year for climate action. The initiative is being prepared with science support from the “GCRF South Asian Nitrogen Hub”, supported by UK Research and Innovation through its Global Challenges Research Fund. The hub forms part of a global effort working in partnership with the UN Environment Program and the Global Environment Facility through the International Nitrogen Management System, led by the UK. (SRM)