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The Republic of Costa Rica became the 52nd country to join the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC) today, making it the 114th Coalition partner.
Upon joining the Coalition, Costa Rica’s Minister of Environment and Energy, Dr. Edgar Gutiérrez Espeleta, said his country fully endorses the Coalition’s Framework and meaningful action to reduce short-lived climate pollutants.
“We are particularly interested in the CCAC initiatives that promote hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) alternative technology and standards, reduce black carbon from heavy duty diesel vehicles and engines, and mitigate short-lived climate pollutants from the municipal solid waste sector,” Minister Gutiérrez Espeleta said in a written statement.
Costa Rica recently launched plans to achieve low emissions development and reduce the social, environmental, and economic impacts of climate change. Many of these actions will lead to reductions of short-lived climate pollutant emissions.
Canada’s Ambassador to Costa Rica, Michael Gort, welcomed Costa Rica to the Coalition. Canada is current Co-Chair of the CCAC.
“We welcome Costa Rica and feel confident that a country with such a strong environmental reputation can make a significant contribution to the Coalition partnership,” Ambassador Gort said. “This milestone underscores once again Costa Rica’s commitment to sustainability.”
We welcome Costa Rica and feel confident that a country with such a strong environmental reputation can make a significant contribution to the Coalition partnershipMichael Gort
The country is wasting no time moving forward, combining its official membership in the CCAC with a national seminar on sustainable transport. The seminar, supported by the Government of Canada, looks at how electric transport can help fight climate change and improve the quality of life, air, and health in cities.
Gustavo Máñez Gomis, UN Environment’s Climate Change Coordinator for Latin America and the Caribbean, said moving away from polluting vehicles and toward electric mobility reduces urban air pollution, protects the climate, reduces energy bills and improves human health, particularly in countries like Costa Rica which has an almost 100% share in renewables.
“As a sustainability leader in the region, and with the Electric Mobility Bill under preparation, we expect to see Costa Rica leading the way in the transition to electric mobility in Latin America,” Mr Máñez Gomis said.
Helena Molin Valdés, Head of the UN Environment hosted Climate and Clean Air Coalition Secretariat welcomed Costa Rica as a partner.
“Costa Rica is known for its global leadership in protecting the environment and we welcome their commitment to reduce short-lived climate pollutants,” Ms Molin Valdés said. “They are already working with Coalition partners to find ways to reduce emissions from the transport sector and have made energy efficiency and low emissions a national priority. We look forward to their contributions to the work of the Coalition.”
Under its ‘7th National Energy Plan 2015-2030’, Costa Rica has identified priorities to reduce emissions from electricity production and the transport sector. In its ‘National Development Plan 2015-2018’ the country has also set a strategic objective to promote actions against global climate change in order to guarantee security, human safety and the country’s competitiveness.
In 2015, the country submitted its Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) where it announced actions to increase its resilience to the impact of climate change and strengthen its capacity for low emissions development.
The Climate and Clean Air Coalition is a voluntary global partnership of 52 countries, 17 intergovernmental organizations, and 45 businesses, scientific institutions and civil society organizations committed to catalyzing concrete, substantial action to reduce Short Lived Climate Pollutants (including methane, black carbon and many hydrofluorocarbons). The Coalition has 11 initiatives working to raise awareness, mobilize resources and lead transformative actions in key sectors. Reducing short-lived climate pollutants can provide benefits to health, development, and the environment. These actions must go hand in hand with deep and persistent cuts to carbon dioxide and other long-lived greenhouse gases if we are to achieve the goal of the Paris Agreement and keep global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.