Yes, Collaboration and cooperation!
February 22nd, 2017

Interestingly, not only human being; various guests creatures also make tourism in my country! However, we are facing these days an adverse effect; Take an example, every year Demoiselle Crane visits my country in Winter from Mongolian, China and some parts of Russia; they were spending some nights in our land. Two weeks back scientists were alarming, Demoiselle Crane didn’t stay even single night this year! Just enter and immediately left!

(Following is Bishnu Rimal’s intervention on day session of February 8, 2017: IMF and World Bank’s work on climate change, mitigation and transition strategies.)

Thank you for the presentation!

Colleagues,

Our former prime minister sued to say- Nepal is famous due to height and light- the height the highest peak of the world; and the light- Lord Budhha, who is known as the light of Asia.

Today I am not talking on light; let me talk the height relating it with the climate!

I will begin with my conversation with one of my colleagues from Bangladesh; who asked- so what for me if Himalaya is melting down? We afraid on our sea that is creating crisis every year!

I tried to explain- “We are in the lap of the same Himalayas. Our rivers originate from the Himalayas and merge at the Bay of Bengal. The clouds from the Bay of Bengal bump against the Himalayas; and land in our country in the form of rain.

We also share the tragedy of nature on an equal term.

Look, the typhoons in Bangladesh shake our Himalayas, and trigger avalanches and floods.

Just two years backI remind him, when there was typhoon Hayaan– which impacted a glacier flood in western Himalayas in Nepal, that claimed 29 lives immediately – those who were in the trekking trails at that moment.

Our avalanches and floods, in return, create mayhem of various kinds in Bangladesh. The nature has not just created the Himalayas and the Bay of Bengal, but also the bond of existence, one that requires us to constantly collaborate and cooperate.

Yes, Collaboration and cooperation!

This policy should be accepted and applied by every one, the Bank, the IMF and all stake holders!

My humble question is- do we have been following this?

Colleagues,

My country is not only the First Republic in 21st century; it is a country with diversity —

  • It is the home of 125 ethnic people who speaks 123 dialogue and languages; though Nepal is a small country: smaller 65 times than China and 22 times than India!
  • Every 15 KM South to North, we have bio diversity
  • It is a land of lowest point from sea level to highest peak of the world; we have 8 highest peaks of the world!

Interestingly– Not only human being; various guests creatures also make tourism in my country!

However, we are facing these days an adverse effect;

Take an example, every year Demoiselle Crane visits my country in Winter from Mongolian, China and some parts of Russia; they were spending some nights in our land. Two weeks back scientists were alarming, Demoiselle Crane didn’t stay even single night this year! Just enter and immediately left!

Untimely rain, snowfalls are indicating us– the destruction of climate is getting serious further!

When an avalanche killed 16 A-grade Sherpa guides; One of the famous Sherpa explained- “Earlier ice falls would form into pyramid shape. So the climbers would easily notice them. Now the icefalls remain in flat shape and they keep changing patterns, even moving. Crevasses open and close now and then; sometimes burying whole stretch of climbing ropes and ladders.”

Experts in ICIMOD say- The rapidly retreating glaciers (average retreat of more than 30 m/year), rapid rise in temperature (>0.06°C), erratic rainfalls and increase in frequency of extreme events such as floods and drought like situation are some of the effects Nepal is facing during the last few years.

Most of the big rivers of Nepal are glacier-fed and its main resources of water and hydroelectricity is getting seriously affected due to the ongoing changes in glacier reserves, snowfall and natural hazards.

Our mountain regions are being more vulnerable due to increased warming trends as well as extreme changes in altitude over small distances. These alarming trends not only make Nepal’s major sectors of economy such as agriculture, tourism and energy more vulnerable but also endanger the health, safety and wellbeing of Nepali people.

We all know- these effect are happening, not because Nepali are destroying the Himalayas, damaging environment; rather we are facing consequence due to others mistake!

As our (ITUC) General Secretary Sharan Burrow says- there is no job in dead planet! It is enough to remind that the trade unions are aware on it!

You know, Nepali lies in a specific geographical location: between two giants – China and India; both are rapidly growing economies. And, we cannot escape by the rapidly increasing influence of climate caused by their uneven development.

Thus, Climate change is becoming already dangerous to our survival and we have to do everything possible to prevent it being catastrophic to us.

The issue of Carbon trade is there– good to mention here that Forest conservation is one of the Success story in Nepal.

Nepal buy fossil fuel not in millions but in Billions Nepali rupees which is an irony to reduce carbon emission

There is question on specific policy on Climate change of the IMF, contradiction in policy and practice is there on the bank case as well.

However, The Bank- has few projects in my country relating to climate change. That is in Alternative Energy Promotion Centers–1) Scaling up renewal energy program 2) and Development of improving cooking solution

PPCR- pilot project for climate resilience is there.

Pity to say, these programmes are far from necessity; further the delivery is so slow!

Sad to mention– the stakeholders are not invited and included any of these plans. Trade Unions specially excluded even from the consultation.

There is lots of potential for green jobs in my country, pity to mention- we are traveling towards opposite direction!

Thus, it is further insufficient just mentioning policy in the paper- we need action.

To save this planet we need collective action!

Thank you!

 

IMF Head Quarter
Washington DC
February 08, 2017

Note:

Session Title: IMF and World Bank’s work on climate change, mitigation and transition strategies
Speakers: John A. Roome (World Bank), Ian Parry (IMF)

Discussants: Bishnu Rimal (GEFONT-Nepal), Annie van Wezel (FNV-Netherlands)
Moderator: Sulistri Afrileston (KSBSI-Indonesia) 

Annotated note:

[The IMF does not have any policy or programme on climate change. In 2010, the Fund’s management proposed the adoption of a financing programme for climate investment but it was rejected by the executive board. The IMF has however actively discouraged energy subsidies – in part because of the climate impact, but principally because of the fiscal cost – and has made reduction of subsidies a condition of some loan programmes in developing countries, particularly in Middle East-North Africa. The Fund’s climate-related analyses focus on the fiscal issues and, in particular, have attempted to calculate the costs of direct or indirect subsidies for fossil fuels.

The World Bank has done much more extensive analyses and recommendations on climate change in recent of years, such as in the three-volume “Turn Down the Heat” series. These reports have gone into depth on the costs of climate change and the distributional impact, notably the fact that it will affect low-income and vulnerable populations more than others. The World Bank is also involved in a major way in climate finance and in the Climate Investment Funds. However, neither the Bank’s analyses nor its recommendations have focused on the impact of climate change on working people and on strategies for a just transition. Several civil society organization working on climate change have praised the World Bank’s research on the issue but have been critical of the Bank’s continued financial support for some fossil-fuel projects and for encouraging countries to increase subsidies for fossil fuel extraction. Some organizations have stated that the Bank is hypocritical for engaging in financial and policy support for fossil fuels while at the same time calling for a zero- carbon future.

Colleagues are invited to question the IFIs about the impact of their climate-related recommendations and programmes on working and low-income people and to make suggestions for improvement. For example, if the elimination of fuel subsidies result in higher public transit costs, the IMF could support increased minimum wages. The World Bank should explicitly include support for a just transition for workers in its climate-change mitigation and transition programmes. The ITUC has proposed engaging in joint work with the Bank for carrying this out but the Bank has not yet taken up the proposal. ]

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