AfDB Strengthens Cooperation with Nordic Development Fund in Climate Change Initiatives

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The Nordic Development Fund Manager for Southern Africa, Johanna Palmberg, visited the African Development Bank’s Zambia Field Office (ZMFO) on September 13, 2013 to discuss the ongoing green growth initiatives in Zambia pioneered by the AfDB, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED). The initiatives were launched with workshops in January and May 2013.

NDF has entered into dialogue with the ZMFO to explore the possibility of NDF supporting the green growth work at country level through diagnostic studies that would guide investment programming in green growth interventions. The Zambian Government has already shown interest in strategically mainstreaming green growth into its national development planning.

Palmberg explained the activities and focus of NDF work in Africa and how it is collaborating with multilateral development banks such as AfDB and World Bank to add value to their work through provision of grants for studies and investments. NDF is already collaborating with the AfDB in Zambia on the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience (PPCR) by financing the development of transport design codes and standards. NDF has a Nordic Climate Facility that supports innovative work on climate change.

The meeting between the AfDB and NDF concluded with an agreement that the planned feasibility studies in Zambia, Rwanda and Tanzania would provide a platform for the design of a coherent green growth intervention strategy in Zambia and would provide a clearer picture of intervention areas. Freddie Kwesiga, AfDB’s Resident Representative in Zambia, highlighted the importance of introducing clean energy technologies to mitigate the high deforestation rate in Zambia due to demand for firewood and charcoal that constitute 100% of energy consumption in rural areas and peri-urban areas outside the electricity grid. The potential of solar power and other clean energy options for rural areas (domestic and institutional) was another area to be explored during the feasibility studies, while technologies for solid waste management was to be explored in urban areas. It was agreed that any green growth strategy in Zambia should be based on quick-win technologies that provide energy options to rural populations.

The AfDB-NDF meeting adds value to the ongoing work by the AfDB in partnership with the OECD and IIED to clarify a green-growth strategy for Zambia. The planned study to be financed by NDF will add much value to the process. The African Development Bank is to develop the Terms of Reference and a proposal to submit to NDF for funding. The NDF, in turn, will brief the Pilot Climate Change Secretariat on its planned support.