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The Developments of Renewable Energy Technology in Response to Climate Change: UNFCCC and Nepal


The world’s climate is always varied naturally. Still, the overall evidence from around the world indicates that a new kind of climate change is now underway, foreshadowing drastic impacts on people, economies, and ecosystems (1). According to UNFCCC, “Climate change” means a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods (2).
Nepal is a highly vulnerable country (the fourth most vulnerable country in the world) and is susceptible to natural and climate-induced disasters. Soon after signing the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Rio de Janeiro in June 1992, Nepal commenced efforts and initiatives to address climate change.

A Case Study in Nepal

The case study in Bhumlichok, VDC Gorkha Nepal by Shrestha (2012) showed that improved access to clean and renewable sources of lighting and cooking energy has a positive impact on combating climate change. It is found that, on average, a project participant household saves 44 liters of kerosene annually for the household lighting, which means that annually the household members, especially mothers and children, are less exposed to carbon dioxide emission by 110 kg CO2, as compared to the non-participant households (3). A significant recent step in this regard was the Climate Change Policy, announced in 2011. The policy’s principal goal is to improve livelihoods by implementing mitigation and adaptation actions to alleviate the adverse impacts of climate change. The plan envisages Nepal adopting a low-carbon socio-economic development path. The principal objectives of the strategy include (i) implementing climate adaptation-related programs, (ii) reducing GHG emissions by promoting the use of clean energy, (iii) increasing the resilience capacity of local communities for optimum utilization of natural resources, and (iv) establishing a Climate Change Centre as a competent technical institution to address issues of climate change


Nepal NAPA and the thirteen development plans have recognized the role of renewable energy in adaptation to climate change. Nepal (2005) has also identified technical, financial, and policy issues to promote RETs for adaptation and sustainable development. The fact that there have been several programs to combat climate change is essential to enrich the plans and policies. Therefore, there are some recommendations which are described below:

1. Source of Financing

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) should be more technical to provide an essential source of financing to support the uptake of carbon dioxide (CO2) capture and geological storage (CCS) in developing countries. Significant technological advances are needed for conditions such as making renewable energy technologies cost-competitive. Another critical barrier is considered financing, especially accessing and allocating sufficient financing. For promoting new and innovative approaches/techniques, upfront support is a prerequisite.

2. Environmentally Sustainable Transport System

The UNFCCC should encourage the developing countries to establish an environmentally sustainable transport system, for example, the promotion of public transport systems and bicycle use. The introduction of fuel tax used in Kathmandu Valley for air quality improvement and further advancement of non-motorized transport would reduce pollution in urban areas. There are many strategic approaches to avoid unnecessary travel, to reduce trip distance, to promote the shift towards more sustainable transport modes such as non-motorized transport components in the transport plane, and further promote public transport systems.

3. Climate-friendly Practices in Agriculture

The UNFCCC should be more cooperative in promoting climate-friendly practices in agriculture; for instance, there are farmers’ schools in Nepal where native varieties of crops are helping. They use local and indigenous knowledge and building on efficient technologies. Similarly, efforts are underway to develop flood and drought-resistant crop varieties to cope with climate change impacts. Nepal, with its Agricultural Development Strategy, will gradually move towards commercial agriculture considering climate change vulnerabilities (4).

4. Clean Energy Technology

The UNFCCC should promote clean energy technology like electricity, biogas, solar power, and energy-efficient biomass technology, such as ICS and gasifier, which we see as a promising technology for reducing greenhouse gas emission (5). The council should encourage the developed countries to reduce their carbon emission with clean technology investment.


The recommendations mentioned above are followed by Nepal’s belief that all nations have to go hand in hand to combat climate change by the developments of renewable energy technologies. Each of us has to take the role to participate and prompt a suitable solution to combat climate change, which all countries may prosper.


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Md. Nayem Hasan Munna
Soil and Environmental Sciences,
The University of Barishal,
Barishal, Bangladesh.
Email: [email protected]
Youtube: Md. Nayem Hasan Munna

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