What role can International Standards play in the implementation of the Paris Agreement?

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Por Sandrine Tranchard
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International Standards can be used as tools to help implement the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development. This is the message of a side event organized by ISO and the IAF (International Accreditation Forum) as part of the 23rd Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC COP23) in Bonn, Germany.

COP23 has started with the aim of clarifying the enabling frameworks that will make the Paris Agreement fully operational and the support needed for all nations to achieve their climate change goals. For the many countries that have ratified the agreement, the time for implementation has begun.

“The devastating climatic events the world has recently had to face show us how urgent it is to act now and to take concrete measures to protect our planet and our society. Voluntary International Standards developed with consensus by experts around the world are solutions that can have a practical and positive impact on our daily lives. They provide guidance to businesses as well as organizations from the public or private sector in addition to policy makers to support their efforts to reduce their environmental impact,” says ISO Secretary-General, Sergio Mujica.

“Environmental and climate protection have been solidly anchored in German standardization for many years. There is also agreement at the international level that standardization is an important factor in the realization of UN sustainability goals,” says Christoph Winterhalter, Executive Board Chairman of DIN, ISO’s member for Germany.

“Concrete projects that are driving us forward at the moment focus largely on the consequences of climate change. This includes raising the standards committees’ awareness of the need to adapt to the consequences of climate change and the need for standardization in support of adaptation to climate change. Examples of this include vulnerability assessment, a vulnerability analysis which deals with the impact of climate change on organizations, as well as the issue of climate finance, i.e. investment and financing related to climate change.”

ISO is developing new international framework standards to assist non-state actors in meeting climate targets aligned with the Paris Agreement. The ISO-IAF joint side event will highlight the role of these new standards, as well as a harmonized global approach for accreditation, to facilitate the acceptance of verification between economies, build confidence and strengthen governance and transparency in future adaptation activities.

This side event will focus on well-known standards such as ISO 14001 (environmental management), ISO 14065 (greenhouse gas validation and verification) and ISO 50001 (energy management). Standards such as these help to open world markets for clean energy and energy-efficient technologies and support climate change adaptation and mitigation schemes.

It will show how environmental management and energy management, and new framework standards, will support parties and non-state actors in facilitating global or local climate actions.

ISO standards currently under development will also be highlighted, such as ISO 14090 on a framework for climate change adaptation, ISO 14080 on a framework for climate action and ISO 14097, which focuses on climate finance.

Monitoring climate change, quantifying greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and promoting good practice in environmental management and design are just some of the ways in which ISO International Standards help organizations address climate change.


ISO-IAF side event 

What: The role of International Standards and accreditation to support non-state actors in light of the Paris Agreement
Where: Bonn zone
When: Friday 17 November 2017 from 16:45 to 18:15


Sandrine Tranchard
Sandrine Tranchard

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