IKI Interface Workshop in Colombia 

View of Tatama National Park - Colombia is a biodiversity hotspot. Photo: Shutterstock

On 16 and 17 February 2021, the NDC Policy Programme hosted the second IKI Interface Workshop in Colombia. This annual event is designed to promote dialogue between the country’s IKI pro-jects, the Colombian Ministry of Environment (MinAmbiente) and the BMU about project activities and current topics in the fields of climate action and biodiversity. As a result of ongoing restrictions because of the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s workshop was relocated from Bogotá to cyber-space. Around 60 participants used the online workshop to discuss insights and challenges in rela-tion to the implementation of their project activities – especially in the context of the pandemic.

Green Recovery - opportunities for a sustainable new start in Colombia

Alongside current developments relating to the strategic and political framework for climate action and biodiversity, the first few days of the workshop focused on the topic of opportunities for a ‘green recovery’. In autumn 2020, the Colombian government unveiled a new strategy aimed at ensuring a fair and sustainable economic recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic. This strategy emphasises the role of renewables, the preservation and conservation of natural resources, and the creation of ‘green jobs’ as a means of achieving these goals.

The presentations on the IKI Corona Response Package and recent IKI news from Dr Philipp Behrens, Head of the International Climate Initiative Division at BMU, and Stephan Contius, the Com-missioner for the 2030 Agenda, Head of Division United Nations, Developing Countries and Emerging Economies at the BMU, were therefore especially relevant for the IKI implementing organisations. Four projects in Colombia and an economic consultant at the Colombian Ministry of Planning (DNP) are currently part of the funding package. Francisco Charry, Head of Department, ‘Climate Action and Risk Management’ at the Colombian Ministry of Environment, shed light on progress made by the national climate policy and outlined the opportunities and challenges presented as part of the Colombian Green Recovery. One highlight of this presentation was the updated Colombian nationally determined contribution (NDC), which plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 51 percent compared with the business-as-usual scenario – a figure that is more than double the target in the first NDC.

Knowledge sharing and a chance for cooperation

The second day of the workshop focused on sharing best practice from the projects. Grouped by topic area, various projects used this opportunity to introduce their experiences in relation to specific approaches or tools. Across a range of digital platforms, the participants identified points of contact with the topics introduced in the workshop and places where options presented themselves for future cooperation.

The wide variety of ideas proposed in the concluding plenary session as the interface’s next activities underline the portfolio’s thematic diversity as well as the tremendous commitment on the part of the projects. Despite the ongoing challenges, made even tougher by COVID-19, the overall prospects for the future of German-Colombian collaboration in the fields of climate action and biodiversity can therefore be considered as positive.