Micro-chats for the climate: non-state actors talk about raising climate ambition in Latin America

The event was attended by representatives from academia, non-governmental organisations, the private sector, and young people.

Meeting global climate objectives requires not only action by governments and state institutions, but also effort, commitment, action, and resources from other actors in society - academia, the private sector, civil society organisations, indigenous peoples, youth, etc.

A pending challenge in Latin America and the Caribbean is to achieve greater involvement and participation of non-state actors in the definition and implementation of NDCs and climate policies, in order to increase the ambition of national climate commitments and accelerate climate actions that generate tangible benefits to advance towards low-carbon and climate-resilient development. In that regard, it is essential to know these challenges and their main initiatives in the voice of their protagonists.

Based on this theme and under the framework of the "Joint Regional Event: Climate Action in times of crisis: Promoting sustainable recovery after COVID-19", the EUROCLIMA+ programme, through the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) with its initiative "Dialogue among peers to strengthen NDC implementation in Latin America", and in cooperation with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) organised the session "Micro-chats for the climate: How non-state actors can contribute to raising the ambition of NDCs and accelerating climate action in Latin America and the Caribbean".

Through this space for conversation, representatives from various sectors of society were invited to identify barriers, challenges, best practices, opportunities and needs, in order to increase the inclusion and participation of non-state actors in actions aimed at implementing the Paris Agreement in Latin America and the Caribbean.

In this sense, Maisa Rojas, Director of the Centre for Climate Science and Resilience (CR)2, as a representative of the academy, stated that it "can help by providing evidence on the causes of climate change, its impacts and also on its solutions". In addition, she stressed that it is necessary to confront climate change through structural causes, addressing inequalities.

The academic highlighted the role played by the Scientific Committee created in Chile in the context of COP25, which had the mission of bringing national and global evidence to the climate summit negotiations, managing to articulate the work of more than 600 Chilean scientists working on climate change issues. This process was supported at the time by the EUROCLIMA+ programme, through the support given to Chile's Presidency of COP25.

For his part, Manuel Pulgar, Practice Leader of the Global Climate and Energy Programme for WWF, addressed the role of NGOs in increasing the ambition of the NDCs and underscored the need for us to build a collective vision and a new climate economy, on which our future growth and development will depend.

In this regard, Pulgar stated that NGOs can play a relevant role, both in communication and awareness of national and global climate goals, as well as in supporting their implementation. In addition, he highlighted the important role that these institutions have in developing the enabling conditions to make the processes viable, which need participation and information, and the role of NGOs in promoting this participation can be central.

On behalf of the private sector, Evangelina Gómez, Executive Director of CERES, the Ecuadorian Consortium for Social Responsibility and Sustainability, began her intervention by referring to the barrier that exists due to the lack of trust between the different actors for working towards the common goal of the climate emergency. In this regard, she also highlighted that the private sector is already working on this issue, which is an opportunity, but it also reveals the challenge of linking more companies to climate action.

Along with this, Gómez referred to the importance of articulating the actions carried out by the private sector with the processes of defining national goals, since it will be the private sector that will have a relevant role in their fulfilment. Additionally, the private sector plays a fundamental role in mobilising resources.

Paloma Costa, Secretary General of the United Nations Youth Council, participated on behalf of the youth. She said that in order to face climate change we need to change the way we act and relate to the environment. The role of young people is fundamental in this, as they can drive the demand for effective actions in the face of increased ambition and greater climate action. In addition, she underscored the importance of access to information and climate education, not only for young people, but for society as a whole.

The event also invited attendees to participate online, who put forward more proposals and perspectives regarding the contribution of the various sectors in climate action.

Trabajo Fun Retro

Silvia Brugger, GIZ Coordinator for Climate Governance of the EUROCLIMA+ Programme, was in charge of the final reflection of this event based on the interventions of the different participants.

Based on the different interventions, she highlighted five central aspects: Firstly, the need to raise awareness and promote actions for greater awareness and mobilisation. This highlights the importance of climate education and access to information as preconditions for effective participation. Secondly, Brugger highlighted the relevance of creating spaces for effective participation for the various sectors in public policy processes and networking. She then mentioned the importance of trust as a contributing factor since we live in a context of polarisation and it is necessary to create trust between the different actors in order to achieve effective articulation and involvement. For this, vision is also crucial, as we must think together about the new development model we want and build a new collective vision with ambitious goals for 2050. Finally, Silvia Brugger called for transformation, as we need deep transformations, based on scientific evidence that will contribute to knowledge of the problem and the solutions, and also create bonds of trust between the different actors.

About EUROCLIMA+

EUROCLIMA+ is a programme financed by the European Union to promote environmentally sustainable and climate-resilient development in 18 Latin American countries, particularly for the benefit of the most vulnerable populations. The Programme is implemented under the synergistic work of seven agencies: the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), the French Development Agency (AFD), the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ), Expertise France (EF), the International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policy (FIIAPP), and UN Environment.

EUROCLIMA letra blanca peqEUROCLIMA+ is the European Union's flagship programme on environmental sustainability and climate change with Latin America. It aims to reduce the impact of climate change and its effects in Latin America by promoting climate change mitigation and adaptation through resilience and investment. 
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