UN Climate Change News, 26 August 2019 - The organizers of Asia-Pacific Climate Week 2019 (2 – 6 September in Bangkok, Thailand), an important event to raise regional and global climate ambition, are walking the talk and making the conference sustainable to the greatest possible extent. This includes offsetting all unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions from air travel to and from the conference.
The meeting is being organized by the United Nations Climate Change in partnership with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP, the conference venue) and other international and regional organizations, which include the United Nations Environment Programme, the UNEP DTU Partnership, the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank Group, the Asian Development Bank, the International Emissions Trading Association, the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies and the Climate Technology Centre and Network.
The organizers are looking at the different aspects of sustainability – including transport, waste management, catering, building energy use and offsetting of unavoidable emissions.
With most participants traveling to Bangkok from abroad, the lion’s share of greenhouse gas emissions from the meeting is from air travel. Further important sources of emissions are from operation of the conference venue, hotel overnight stays and the associated use of energy as well as local mobility – so how participants get to the venue once they are on the ground. For local travel, the options to cut down on emissions are to use public transport as much as possible. All of the unavoidable emissions from Asia-Pacific Climate Week 2019 will be offset by purchasing certified emission reduction credits, preferably from Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects. Thanks to the climate neutrality partners of UN Climate Change – Lvdoya and Infinite Solutions – who purchased 2,000 tonnes of credit in advance.
Lvdoya is working to make the meeting carbon neutral through it’s smartphone app linked to UN’s Climate Neutral Now platform – which enables more Chinese corporations and individuals to participate in climate neutral event at an international level which fits UN Secretary General António Guterres's hope to make every individual become mobile in joining climate actions. Lvdoya made a purchase of 1,000 CERs in advance of APCW 2019. To see the certificate, click here.
Sichuan Lvdoya Information Technology Co. Ltd, a software developer that runs a smartphone app which specializes in promoting carbon neutrality and carbon offsetting to individuals, is the first Chinese company to partner with Climate Neutral Now.
Infinite Solution is an Environment and Sustainability consultant from Indore, India and volunteered to retire 1,000 CERs in advance for Asia-Pacific Climate Week 2019, while the remaining (if any) can be adjusted once the calculations are through.
In addition, the UN’s Climate Neutral Now initiative offers organizations, companies and individuals the possibility to compensate their own greenhouse gas emissions not related to Asia-Pacific Climate Week 2019 by purchasing UN-certified offsets.
Once the meeting is over, organizers will calculate the overall carbon footprint of Asia-Pacific Climate Week 2019 and adjust the amount with offset made in advance.
The emission estimation method involves the following steps:
- A survey will be sent out to all participants ahead of the event.
- At the event itself, there will be a few static booths and roaming student volunteers with their own tablets or laptops to interview participants in the exhibition booth areas. Upon completion, or if they already completed the survey at home, the badge will be marked with a colored sticker to avoid asking twice. An announcement will be made at the opening plenary to request that all participants seek out a student volunteer to complete their survey between the sessions.
- After the meeting, the Conference Management Unit and Facilities teams at UNESCAP will be consulted to gather figures for food, waste and electricity usage. All this, along with the participant data is cleaned and then entered into an Excel file with pre-determined formulas to calculate overall carbon emissions.