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Committee formed to assist in climate talks

HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE

KATHMANDU: The Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology has formed a committee to help the chair of the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) bring to light challenges facing 48 Least Developed Countries, which are signatories to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), at climate talks.

Nepal accepted the leadership of the LDCs in the UNFCCC in December last year for 2013-14. Joint secretary Prakash Mathema, chief of the climate division at the ministry, will lead the LDCs on behalf of the country. The support committee formed under the coordination of Mathema has experts Batu Upreti, Padam Hamal and Thakur Devkota, representative of civil society Manjit Dhakal and a representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as members. Mathema said the committee will provide suggestions to the LDCs’ forum.

Mathema pointed that Nepal has a “tremendous task” of airing concerns of all member-states — 33 from Africa, 14 from Asia and one from Latin America — in a series of annual meetings, including preparatory meetings and thematic groups’ meetings. The LDC countries have diverse climate concerns related to mountains, islands, rainforests, arid and semi-arid climatic conditions.

Mathema said they have the opportunity to highlight the agendas of the Mountain Initiative and other issues in the forum of 48 countries.

Experts opine that Nepal faces tremendous challenges in presenting diverse issues at climate negotiations.

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