This blog is a reflection on my time at CAFOD and the recent adoption of the SDGs, so it’s a bit longer than usual. While the real work for change at the national level is in many respects only just beginning, it’s a good moment for me to share some thoughts on what I’ve learnt over the last three years, what has changed, and opportunities and challenges ahead.
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Finance for off-grid energy is increasing – the big challenge is working out how best to blend public and private investment to deliver energy services for poor communities.
Policy makers are increasingly recognising that off-grid solutions offer the potential to rapidly increase access to energy in poor communities. But what is less clear is how to make the finance work. The question was raised at last week’s United Nations Sustainable Energy For All Forum – and will be the focus of a session organised by CAFOD, CIDSE and IIED at the EU Development Days (EDD) in Brussels next week. What are the different roles for public and private investment in financing energy access, particularly for the poorest people?
On Monday, the UN Women’s new flagship report, Progress of the World’s Women 2015-16: Transforming Economies Realising Rights, was released in London.
The publication argues that the current economic framework is not working for women and has ‘shifted power relations in ways that undermine the enjoyment of human rights and the building of sustainable livelihoods’. Usefully, it goes on to provide some very concrete examples of what governments (and donors and even INGO’s) can do to tackle these challenges (for more on this see the infographic on pg 10 of the executive summary). (more…)
CAFOD has written a discussion paper on potential scenarios for 2015. Download it here and share your thinking in the comments section below >> What if Scenario Planning discussion paper
Negotiations across three processes at the UN are now in full swing. 2015 was always going to be a busy year for multilateralism, with the Financing for Development conference in July, the Post-2015 Summit in September, and the UNFCCC COP 21 in December. Big outstanding questions remain on how this year is going to deliver ambition across multiple fronts.
The first intergovernmental negotiations (IGN) took place on 19 – 21 January 2015, signalling the beginning of the final phase of the post-2015 process. The Irish and Kenyan co-facilitators have released an indicative roadmap which outlines a clear agenda until May, after which there are three final sessions to address outstanding issues. (more…)
As a tool to help stakeholders engage with the UN this year, we’ve pulled together an overview of the Financing for Development (FFD), post-2015 and UNFCCC (UN Framework Convention on Climate Change) processes this year. It also includes other key moments such as the President of the General Assembly’s High Level Events and the meeting of the High Level Political Forum (HLPF).
It doesn’t include other important moments such as the 59th meeting of the Commission on the Status of Women, which takes place from 9 – 20 March, and marks the 20th anniversary of Beijing. March also hosts the 3rd WCDRR in Sendai, which some are treating as the canary in the mine for other UN processes which follow later in the year.
Please get in touch if you see any info which is missing or inaccurate. Here’s to 2015 delivering on all fronts!
As the fifth day of the Lima climate talks get underway the role of climate finance is again emerging as a crucial issue. Recent announcement by developing countries about financial contributions to the initial capitalisation Green Climate Fund – including the UK’s commitment to provide £720 million – has gone a long way in showing willing, but the lack of space for discussion on finance at the COP in Lima is putting that at risk.
The discussion on ‘INDCs’ or intended nationally determined contributions – each country’s individual plan for tackling climate change – are taking centre stage in Lima. There is much work to be done amongst parties to establish what exactly should be contained in the INDCs and how those elements included could be comparable so a clear idea of ambitious could be established ahead of Paris.
Today saw the publication of the UN Secretary General’s long-awaited synthesis report on the post-2015 development agenda. Here’s a quick analysis from CAFOD’s point of view, remembering that the report has to tread a fine political line between many different priorities.
The next stepping stone in the post-2015 process is the long-anticipated Synthesis Report from the UN Secretary General due out as an advanced unedited copy on Thursday 4th December. This report will draw on multiple inputs, such as the Open Working Group (OWG) proposal for Sustainable Development Goals, the UN High Level Panel report from 2013 and the report on financing sustainable development also from last year, as well as many more letters, position papers and petitions from across civil society and other stakeholders. Bringing together these diverse strands is obviously a difficult task and getting the right balance between these different pieces will require great diplomatic skill.
On Monday I was the lucky recipient of a last-minute ticket to the PWC International Development Conference when a colleague wasn’t able to attend any more. David Kennedy, the newly appointed Economic Development Director General, gave an impressive-20-minute-no-notes opening address focussing on DFIDs approach to economic development.
He emphasised throughout that DFID are still developing much of their thinking and that they would welcome discussion on this. He ended by saying, “if you have any other questions or thoughts, send me an email, I’d love to engage” – and so, taking this offer at face value, here are my three points: