Coalition ministers prioritise reducing emissions from agriculture and municipal solid waste at COP23 Bonn

The Climate and Clean Air Coalition released its Bonn Communiqué during its 9th High Level Assembly


Catherine McKenna, Canada's Minister for Environment and Climate Change, and Marcelo Mena Carrasco, Chile's Minister for Environment, Chair the 9th meeting of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition High Level Assembly

Ministers and high level delegates agreed on actions to reduce emissions from agriculture and waste at the Climate and Clean Air Coalition’s 9th High Level Assembly. Coalition ministers resolved to develop policies and measures in the sectors to reduce methane and black carbon. Both short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) are powerful climate forcers many times more powerful than carbon dioxide at heating the atmosphere.

Canada’s Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Catherine McKenna, and Chile’s Minister of Environment, Marcelo Mena Carrasco led the meeting, which brought together ministers and other senior representatives from government and non-government partners that share the common goal of reducing short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) – methane, black carbon (soot), hydrofluorocarbons, and tropospheric ozone.

The continued leadership of this coalition is one of the ways Canada is working with other countries to take action against climate change and improve air quality and health in Canada and around the world
Catherine McKenna
Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Canada

Opening the High Level Assembly, Minister McKenna, said she had seen the impact climate change was having on indigenous communities in Canada’s North and that the Coalition’s leadership could have tremendous impact to reduce near-term warming.

“The continued leadership of this coalition is one of the ways Canada is working with other countries to take action against climate change and improve air quality and health in Canada and around the world," Minister McKenna said. “In the months ahead, Canada expects to publish updated coal-fired electricity regulations, proposed natural-gas electricity regulations, and the Clean Fuel Standard framework. Canadians should be proud of the recent state of the air report that shows Canada was able to reduce its air emissions while growing the economy.”

Minister McKenna also noted the work the Coalition is doing with UN Environment and the World Health Organization to raise awareness of the connection between climate change and air pollution through the BreathLife campaign, which works with cities and regions to reduce air pollution. Minister McKenna encouraged each country partner to launch the campaign in at least one city.


The 9th CCAC High Level Assembly

Santiago, Chile was the first city to join the BreatheLife campaign and Minister Mena-Carrasco noted that actions in cities across Chile over the last couple of years have already provided benefits. 

“We joined BreathLife with ‘Santiago Respira’ because the reality is that in places where we’ve taken action we’ve reduced emergency room visits by 50% and improved the air for 10 million people,” Minister Mena-Carrasco said.

Both Ministers McKenna and Mena-Carrasco reminded partners of the important role the Coalition played in passing the Kigali Amendment to phase down HFCs under the Montreal Protocol and were joined by UN Environment’s Deputy Executive Director, Ibrahim Thiaw, and Rwanda’s Minister for Environment, Vincent Biruta in calling for all Coalition countries to ratify the amendment.

“We are moving closer to the magic number of 20 ratifications for the Kigali Amendment to enter into force. I am confident that we will reach this milestone before the 29th meeting of the Parties in Montreal next week,” Minister Biruta said. “But we must not be content with the Kigali Amendment simply coming into force… We must go above and beyond the targets set by the Amendment.”

CCAC Bonn Communiqué

Partners signed onto the Coalition’s Bonn Communiqué which prioritises initiatives to reduce methane and black carbon emissions from agriculture and municipal solid waste.

Reducing methane and black carbon emissions from the agriculture and municipal solid waste sectors supports broader efforts to reduce air pollution, end hunger, and build sustainable cities and communities – while helping to limit global warming.

We hope this encourages Partners to develop policies to reduce emissions from agriculture, while at the same time improving the productivity, resilience and profitability of farmers
James Shaw
Minister for Climate Change, New Zealand

Partners committed to leverage political influence to encourage positive change in all sectors of the economy to reduce and eliminate short-lived climate pollutant emissions, share best practices, and support technical cooperation in order to develop and implement relevant policies in the agriculture and municipal solid waste sectors. 

“Through our joint efforts to reduce these harmful pollutants, we will contribute meaningfully to global efforts to help slow the rate of global warming, prevent illness and premature death from air pollution, and enhance food security.  The well-being of future generations—and of our atmosphere—depend on our doing so.”   

James Shaw, New Zealand Minister for Climate Change, said he was pleased with the Communiqué’s focus on Agriculture as it was a large source of New Zealand’s greenhouse gases.

“We hope this encourages Partners to develop policies to reduce emissions from agriculture, while at the same time improving the productivity, resilience and profitability of farmers,” Minister Shaw said. 


José Graziano da Silva, Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organization

José Graziano da Silva, Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said the CCAC and FAO were working together in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa to increase livestock productivity and decrease methane.

“Reducing enteric methane emissions is one of the most cost effective mitigation methods. It could help the sector cut up to 30% of greenhouse gasses immediately,”Mr Graziano da Silva said. “Low carbon livestock is not just possible it is possible now. Reducing methane we achieve fast wins while contributing to a sustainable and food secure world.”

Chu Van Chuong,  Director General of the International Cooperation Department in Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture, said sector was responsible for a significant percentage of the greenhouse gas emissions and Vietnam was working to reduce methane emissions for paddy rice production through alternate wetting and drying planting techniques.

Isabella Lövin, Sweden’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate, commended the focus on reducing methane emissions from municipal solid waste and agriculture saying:


Isabella Lövin, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate, Sweden

“Reducing SLCPs is not just about small quick fixes but also about a broader measures for sustainable development. In the last few decades Sweden has moved from using fossil fuels to heat houses. Waste for district heating has contributed a lot. Since 1990 emissions of methane from waste has decreased 70% and emissions of greenhouse gases from heating of homes and commercial buildings has decreased by almost 90%, reducing our emissions of both carbon dioxide and short-lived climate pollutants.”

Maria Krautzberger, President of the German Environment Agency said: “Germany agrees with the Bonn Communiqué and its focus on municipal waste. We would like to highlight that diverting organic waste from landfills is an important part of the communique. Our goal should be to set up integrated solid waste management, which will also bring health and economic benefits. We also believe that food waste reduction, including prevention, is important.”

The Communiqué also commended the countries that have ratified the Kigali Amendment and encouraged all countries and partners to continue efforts to reduce these pollutants and welcomed complementary efforts to support increased energy efficiency in cooling appliances. 


Just over $7 million in new pledges to the Coalition’s trust fund was made during the High Level Assembly including contributions from Switzerland, Japan, Norway, Walloon Region of Belgium, Sweden and the Netherlands.

Yasuo Takahashi, Japan’s Vice Minister for Global Environmental Affairs, pledged $2.5 million for CCAC activities and noted that Japan would continue to promote SLCP reduction and share best practices and lessons learned in the municipal solid waste sector.

Marc Chardonnens, Switzerland, Secretary of State, pledged CHF 3.6 Million for the next four years 2018-2021 (approximately $1 million each year), saying that it was important because the Coalition is a good model that shows what works in terms of cost and efficiency. “With reasonable and sensible commitments, we can do a lot of the health of humanity,”Mr Chardonnens said. 

New Partners

Nine new partners have joined the Coalition since the last High Level Assembly in Marrakech. They are: Belgium, Congo, Costa Rica, ECOWAS, Luxembourg, Pakistan, Vietnam, the Asian Development Bank, and the World Resources Institute. 

Jean-Luc Crucke, Walloon Region Minister of Budget, Finance, Energy, Climate and Airports said, “Belgium is proud to join the CCAC. We will take ambitious actions to fight short-lived climate pollutants at the regional and national level. We have three main regions and we’re really impressed by the vision and actions taken by this Coalition. The latest UN Emissions Gap Report shows us that SLCPs can help us attain the Paris target together with reducing carbon dioxide.”

Andre Weidenhaupt, Premier Conseiller, auprès du Ministère du Développement durable et des Infrastructures - Département de l’Environnement, Luxembourg said: “We are proud to be a new member. Luxembourg will deliver its ratification tool for the Kigali Amendment by next Tuesday at the latest, and are coordinating with other European Union colleagues to do the same. Rest assured we will do it. We have also banned the open air incineration of waste in landfills and introduced waste composting systems.”

Andrew Steer, President and CEO of the World Resources Institute (WRI) said: “Most of the warming to date has come from short-lived climate pollutants and we are happy to have joined with the CCAC to address this in a serious ways. We will work on the greenhouse gas protocol where we will continue to give high priority to methane and HFCS. And our offices around the world will redouble their efforts to work on these issues. We will also see SLCPs as a very promising area to enhance Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). The NDC partnership will give high priorities to these issues. Implementation now is important and we will work closely with all of you to implement SLCP reduction.” 


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