Technology action programmes

Under the UNFCCC, countries agreed to develop and ensure the transfer of emissions-reducing technologies.

Some progress has been made through the Clean Development Mechanism and the Global Environment Facility.

BUT it has been too little and too late.

Progress has often been stalled by a sterile argument between rich and poor nations about who pays to transfer rich-world technology to the poor world.

The poor world has demanded access to the technologies unhindered by patents and other intellectual property rights.
The rich world sees patents as crucial to encourage innovation and believes the free market is the best mechanism for technology transfer.

We need to get beyond that argument.

We need to recognize that the poor world has good technologies too; that a lot of “technology transfer” is not limited so much by patents as by access to training and know-how.

WWF believes the key is to foster technological cooperation through developing Technology Action Programmes for developing and spreading key technologies.

These include many of the energy technologies listed earlier and many more.

Ideas under discussion also include

  • satellite systems to monitor deforestation,
  • early warning for natural disasters,
  • carbon saving in cement manufacture,
  • indigenous biofuels such as Brazil’s use of rainforest palms, and
  • water-saving technologies like drip irrigation and rainwater harvesting
– all of which can play a critical role in helping the world adapt to climate change.
 / ©: paint for the planet / Jerrika C. Shi, Philippines
International Children’s Painting Competition on the Environment organized by UNEP, the Foundation for Global Peace and Environment, Bayer and Nikon.
© paint for the planet / Jerrika C. Shi, Philippines

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