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Baltic countries unite their efforts to fight against climate change

2017-10-31


This week a conference was held in Riga, the capital of Latvia, to share the achievements, challenges and implemented measures of best practice of the Baltic countries in switching on to low-emission and climate-resilient economic growth. Lithuanian Minister of Environment Kęstutis Navickas exchanged experience with his counterparts from other Baltic countries in implementing the Paris Agreement and the EU Climate and Energy Targets by 2030.

The international conference “Low-emission and climate-resilient economic growth in the Baltic Countries” is attended by experts from the Latvian, Lithuanian, Estonian and Norwegian state and municipal institutions, scientific and non-governmental organisations and representatives from the Directorate General for Climate Action (European Commission) and the Environmental Directorate of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.

After the participation in the discussions on the first day of the conference, Minister of Environment Kęstutis Navickas pointed out that Lithuania managed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 58 %, compared to 1990, whereas the GDP grew by 29 % in 2015.

“This proves the achievement of the principles of sustainable economic development where GDP grows at a faster pace than greenhouse gas emissions. However, the implementation of the Paris Agreement and the EU Climate and Energy Targets by 2030 poses new challenges and require us to implement additional climate change mitigation and adaptation measures in all the economic sectors of Lithuania”, claimed the Minister.

When implementing the targets and objectives of climate change mitigation and adaptation, it is important to integrate them into the development programmes of all the economic sectors and ensure cooperation between state, municipal and non-governmental organisations. Municipalities play the key role in upgrading multi-apartment and public buildings, implementing public transport development, promoting the renouncement of fossil fuel vehicles and increasing the use of electromobiles.

Lithuania also notes that the conditions must be provided for efficient implementation of mitigation measures rather than the purchase of quotes in the sectors that are not included into the EU emissions trading system (agriculture, transport, buildings, waste management, etc.). Another challenge is related to the inclusion of land use, land use change and the forestry sector into the implementation of the GGE targets by approving the respective methodology at the EU level so that a mature forest is not considered as a source of emissions. It is important that the EU climate change policy would be compatible with the biological diversity protection policy.

Public Relations Division
31 October 2017

Minister of Environment of Lithuania Kęstutis Navickas
Minister of Environment of Lithuania Kęstutis Navickas