Remarks by Achim Steiner, UNEP Executive Director at Opening of the 2nd Africa Carbon Forum
Nairobi, 3 March 2010—His Excellency Hon Mwai Kibaki, President of the Republic of Kenya
Hon. J. K. Kiptanui, Assistant Minister for environment, Kenya.
John Kilani, Director Sustainable Development Mechanisms programme, UN Framework Convention on Climate Change
Distinguished guests, delegates, colleagues, ladies and gentlemen.
Welcome to the UN Office at Nairobi—the headquarters of UNEP and UN-Habitat.
Welcome to the place where the Nairobi Framework was forged in 2006.
Where a few years earlier Kofi Annan, the former UN Secretary General received the ratification papers of the Russian Federation.
These brought the Kyoto Protocol and the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) into legal life.
We meet just over two months since the UN climate convention meeting in Copenhagen.
Some may have imagined that Copenhagen and its outcomes might have put a temporary brake on the urgency to combat climate change and accelerate a transition to a low carbon, resource efficient Green Economy.
Certainly the ambition shown in December has so far failed to match the challenge and many remain concerned that the signals to the markets not least on a long term perspective for the price of carbon, remain too weak.
But the 1,000 or so delegates here for the 2nd Africa Carbon Forum underline that many are determined to forge forward.
Africa sees all too clearly the challenge of unchecked climate change.
But it is resolved too to maximize the opportunities, not least through the CDM and the catalyzing of clean and renewable energies alongside forestry projects.
Africa is not alone in this.
Last week in Bali, at UNEP's Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum, the ministers responsible for the environment signalled their determination to make the UN climate convention meeting in Mexico later in the year a success.
UNEP in partnership with others is also gearing up and sharpening its activities in support of an accelerated and comprehensive response to climate change including the via the carbon markets.