Representatives from the Republic of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, the Republic of Serbia and Turkey – together with representatives of the EU, donor organisations, and NGOs – met in Skopje to take stock of the state of climate change adaptation action in the region, and to discuss progression of these objectives within the region.
The Environment and Climate Regional Accession Network (ECRAN) has worked in the Western Balkans and Turkey to share EU experiences and best practice to facilitate the development and implementation of national climate policies within the EU Candidate Countries, and Potential Candidates. Alongside mitigation actions, the project has worked together with the representatives from each of the countries on the development and implementation of adaptation policies, strategies and actions to promote resilience to climate change impact in the region, with the EU Adaptation Strategy serving as a guideline. Seven regional training workshops on adaptation were carried out, with the assistance of EU Member States, the European Environment Agency and the European Commission.
The adoption of the Paris agreement of December 2015 and the prominence it gives to adaptation, on equal footing with mitigation in our commitment to dealing with climate change, provides further drive for the revision of the Adaptation Strategy. As ECRAN is coming to an end this month, it is important to ensure continuity of the work. Ms. Beatriz Yordi, from DG Climate Action, emphasised that the Commission will continue supporting the region in these efforts through different avenues. CLIMA has secured funds from the IPA 2016 programme for a bridging action to continue the work done by ECRAN – primarily on MMR, ETS and climate policy and with the objective to assist with implementation of the Paris Agreement. Moreover, a proper multi-annual regional climate change follow up to ECRAN will be financed from the IPA 2017 to further support transition towards a low-emission and climate resilient economy.