International Program Updates

By Steve Gawler, Director, International Programs

Country Director Indonesia, ICLEI Oceania

HP: (62) 815 1099 7996 (Indonesia)

Mobile: (+61) 400 884 814 (Australia)


Pacific Island mayors advocate for their island homes

In February, ICLEI Oceania invited the Mayor of Port Vila, Vanuatu, Ulrich Sumptoh together with Mayor Alfrence Fatai and Deputy Mayor Eddie Ngava of Honiara, Solomon Islands, to the Resilient Cities Asia Pacific 2015 Congress in Bangkok.

The Congress brought home to delegates the urgent need to assist many small Pacific islands deal with the combined threats of climate change, declining resources and population growth.

A month later Cyclone Pam struck Vanuatu and its capital city, Port Vila. Other Pacific nations were also severely impacted and are seeking the support of the world community to rebuild island communities.

Small island nations will need to be prepared for future extreme weather events resulting from climate change and we at ICLEI can add value and support to building their resilience and disaster risk reduction strategies.

(L-R) Massing Theophile Lord Mayor Ulrich Sumptoh (Port Vila)
Mayor Alfrence Inoga Fatai (Honiara) Bernie Cotter Deputy Mayor Eddie Ngavo (Honiara) Steve Gawler

International Programs Report 2014

Rockefeller Foundation Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN)
Under the contract awarded in October 2012 Oceania is responsible for rolling out the program to 40 cities in India, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Philippines through ICLEI South Asia, ICLEI South-East Asia and the new office in Indonesia. The term of the contract is until end 2015.

Status of project:
• We are approximately mid-way through the active period of the grant and the 4 country offices are currently working with approximately 25 cities.
• A meeting was held on 24,25 November in Manila to discuss the ICLEI-ACCCRN resilience strategy format with Asia Development Bank to strengthen the link between the city strategies and financing options
• A supplementary grant of 600,000 USD was received from Rockefeller Foundation to provide small grants to community stakeholder groups in the target cities. The first batch of applications is being processed.
• The “ICLEI-ACCCRN” Toolkit has now been edited and refined, ready for public launch.

GIZ Policy Advice for Environment and Climate Change (PAKLIM)
ICLEI Oceania provided a team of consultants to provide support to the Indonesian PAKLIM program, which assists cities to work through an integrated climate planning process.

Status of project:
This contract ended June 2014.

Urban Low Emissions Development Strategy (LEDS)
ICLEI Southeast Asia is part of a global ICLEI consortium delivering a European Union funded “Urban Low Emissions Development Strategy” (Urban LEDS) program in 4 developing countries, including Indonesia. Steve Gawler is contracted directly by ICLEI SEA to project manage this in Indonesia.

Status of project:
A mid-term evaluation is currently being conducted and discussions with European Commission and UN Habitat are underway regarding a possible Urban LEDS Phase 2 grant. ICLEI Oceania associate Stephen Kenihan is being engaged to provide technical support to the Indonesian LEDS cities for analysis of their GHG inventories and to assist to develop an MRV system for LEDS activities in Indonesia.

ICLEI Indonesia Office
ICLEI Indonesia moved into separate premises close to the APEKSI office in September. APEKSI will continue to provide financial and administrative support until ICLEI has registered as an Indonesian Foundation. ICLEI Oceania will continue to share the associated operational costs with ICLEI Southeast Asia until the end of the Rockefeller Foundation contract period, December 2015.

New Program Development

1. Pacific Islands
A draft Pacific Islands Toolkit has been developed, drawing on the ICLEI-ACCCRN climate resilience approach from our work in Asia, the Green Climate Cities methodology designed for Urban LEDS, and the UN ISDR Disaster Resilience tools. This toolkit is designed to help city/town governments to build broad resilience into the delivery of basic services. It is now planned to test the approach with two towns, possibly Honiara and Port Vila. Some modest funding will be required to trial the toolkit and ICLEI is working with the Commonwealth Local Government Forum (CLGF) and others to identify funding sources.

2. Disaster Risk Reduction
The UNISDR Making My Cities Resilient Campaign has been rolled out around the world over the past 4 years with over 2000 cities having signed up. However to date there has been a very low sign-up rate of cities in Oceania. It is planned to conduct a campaign in Oceania beginning early 2015 comprising:
• Awareness raising and signing events
• Regional or cluster briefings on the ISDR tools and techniques
• Possibly offering ongoing technical support to cities on a fee-for-service basis

ICLEI is working with AECOM to develop a partnership approach, hopefully tapping into AECOM’s ability to secure private sector funding. ICLEI and AECOM are also working in partnership to test the ISDR tools in Bandung, Indonesia, and it is hoped this team approach will become a blueprint for collaboration in Oceania.

Challenges, Opportunities

There is a very good opportunity to transfer the experience, methodologies and proven track record in Asia over the past 6 years to the Pacific Island countries and also back to Australia and New Zealand. The two new program areas above represent opportunities in Oceania broadly and also the islands. The conceptual development phase is completed and we are now pursuing funding options.

Sukabumi joins ICLEI climate resilience program

Mayor of Sukabumi and Ibu Indah from APEKSI signing MOU, witnessed by Steve Gawler

On Monday 17 June the newly elected Mayor of Sukabumi, Indonesia, signed an MOU with the Indonesian association of municipalities APEKSI to work with ICLEI on a climate resilience program. Supported by the ICLEI Indonesia office, Sukabumi will go through a rapid assessment process to understand the impacts of the changing climate on their city and to plan for greater resilience. The Mayor is particularly concerned about ensuring a high quality water supply for the community and will target a cleanup of the major rivers. Sukabumi already has an impressive number of initiatives underway to improve the natural environment, waste management and to control vehicle emissions.

Green Village program in Sukabumi

While in Sukabumi for the MOU signing, we visited a demonstration Kelurahan Hijau (Green Village) site. This is an urban village on the border of the city, beside a deep river valley. The local village leaders have worked with a special committee to turn the village into a beautiful green, clean and sustainable place. Vegetable gardens, potted plants, a pristine stream and lots of natural vegetation have created a cool, sustainable oasis. But above all, the village leader points out that the process of working together to achieve collective action has actually strengthened the community so that they can now work together on any other opportunities or problems which may arise. The same principle exactly as ICLEI Oceania’s Thriving Neighborhoods initiative.

Asia Pacific Climate Networking Meeting

A high level roundtable meeting was held in Jakarta on 18 and 19 March to design a regional resilience networking program. Senior representatives from the Rockefeller Foundation, Ove Arup, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) and ICLEI regional offices discussed a system for knowledge capture and dissemination to local governments in the Asia Pacific, consisting of:

• A knowledge network

• Regional conferences and events

• Climate resilience recognition awards

• National and regional roundtables

Martin Brennan, CEO ICLEI Oceania, was convenor of the meeting and will spearhead the development of this program. While in Jakarta Martin also participated in a welcoming ceremony for the new ICLEI Project Office.

ICLEI Indonesia Project Office

We are very happy to announce that the new ICLEI Indonesia Project Office was opened in January 2013. It forms part of the ICLEI South-East Asia Region, is co-funded by ICLEI South-East Asia and ICLEI Oceania, and is hosted by APEKSI. We are located in the APEKSI office in Rasuna Office Park, Kuningan. New staff joining ICLEI are Irvan Pulungan (Team Leader), Teguh Wiradhanto (APEKSI support officer), Indira Darmoyono, and Yogi Simamora. A great team and lots of work to do!

Pak Sarimun, Executive Director APEKSI

Regional ACCCRN meeting

Marcus Moench, ISET, and Dr Paul Chamniern from the Thai Environment Institute

Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN) supported by the Rockefeller Foundation.

A meeting of ACCCRN partners was held in Bangkok in mid-November to coordinate all of the components of this program – working directly with cities, capturing and documenting the learning and experiences, developing training packages and dissemination at global events. The ACCCRN climate planning approach is quite unique as it is based on assessing the impact of climate change on urban systems and the urban poor. The resultant strategies will build urban climate resilience, focusing on the poorest and most vulnerable groups. Under its new contract ICLEI will play a key role in scaling up this approach across Asia.

Gearing up for new ACCCRN contract

ICLEI South Asia Climate Team and Steve Gawler

Since being awarded the 1.75 million USD grant to work with 40 Asian cities, ICLEI has been working intensively to prepare the four country teams. A workshop was held in Delhi in early November to review the adaptation planning process – the “toolkit” – which was trialled with three Indian cities. This toolkit will then be adapted and translated for use in Bangladesh, Indonesia and the Philippines. The workshop was conducted by the ICLEI South Asia office and Steve Gawler, supported by ACCCRN partners Arup International Development, TARU and Verulam. Three cities are being selected in each country to commence the rollout.

New grant to Oceania for ACCCRN

ICLEI has been awarded US$1.75 Million Grant to Expand Climate Change Resilience Program to 30-40 New Cities Rockefeller Foundation “Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network” (ACCCRN)

ICLEI Oceania, is one of the key partners involved with ACCCRN along with ICLEI South Asia and ICLEI South East Asia Secretariats. The funds will be used to ensure up to 40 more cities in Asia can benefit from ACCCRN’s urban climate change resilience initiatives and undergo resilience planning assessments to catalyze a range of new actions. The new cities targeted will be located in two countries which are already working with ACCCRN, India and Indonesia, as well as two new countries, Bangladesh and the Philippines.

"The grant allows us to significantly expand and scale up ACCCRN’s pioneering work in the field of urban climate change resilience,” said Steve Gawler, Director International Programs for ICLEI Oceania, who oversees ICLEI’s work for ACCCRN. "We will now be able to demonstrate that ACCCRN’s tools and methods can be adapted and used by others to enable large-scale adoption in new cities – both in core ACCCRN countries that already have a strong base of activity, but also in non-ACCCRN countries,” he said.

Martin Brennan, ICLEI Oceania, CEO said ICLEI is uniquely positioned to extend the experiences and processes developed under ACCCRN to other cities through our Asian and worldwide cities network.