Self Assessment of National Capacity Building Needs in Sudan to Manage Global Environmental Issues (NCSA)




 
Fast Facts:
• Project Document
Location: National
Duration: October 2005 – October 2007 (Operationally Closed)
Focus area: Energy and Environment for Sustainable Development
Donors: Global Environment Facility (GEF)
Partners: Higher Council for Environment and Natural Resources
Delivery for 2007: US $ 36,606.57
Contact person in UNDP: Hanan Mutwakil, Programme Analyst,
hanan.mutwakil@undp.org

Background
According to the recent UNEP report titled Sudan Post-Conflict Environmental Assessment, UNEP, “an estimated 50 to 200 km southward shift of the boundary between semi-desert and desert has occurred since rainfall and vegetation records were first held in the 1930s. This boundary is expected to continue to move southwards due to declining precipitation. The remaining semi-desert and low rainfall savannah which represent some 25 percent of Sudan’s agricultural land, are at considerable risk of further desertification. This is forecast to lead to a significant drop (approximately 20 percent) in food production.”

Over the past few decades Sudan’s environment has experienced long and devastating droughts, severe land degradation, due to demographic pressure and ill-managed development, and a deforestation crisis in the drier regions.

In an attempt to join the international community’s endeavours to address these pressing issues, Sudan has ratified the Global Environmental Conventions in line with global environmental objectives agreed upon at the UN Conference on Environment and Development, Rio de Janeiro, 1992, and related international instruments. In doing so, the country became a party to the United Nations Convention on Biodiversity (UNCBD) in 1995; a party to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1992; and in November 1995, was the 16th Party to ratify the United Nations Convention on Combating Desertification (UNCCD).

In order to comply with these commitments, the Government of Sudan developed, in cooperation with UNDP/Global Environment Facility, national plans and strategies for the achievement of biodiversity, climate change and desertification convention goals. However, these programmes and plans tend to adopt a sectoral approach. They were not designed to consider a coordinated and cross-sectoral approach at the institutional and/or systematic levels. While each convention stands on its own with specific objectives and commitments, there is a mutual dependency between all of them. Therefore, a holistic approach is necessary in order to design a national strategy and build the capacity of relevant institutions, understand the synergies between these conventions, and find ways to coordinate and harmonize overlapping activities between them.

To address these needs, in October 2005 UNDP launched the Self-Assessment of National Capacity Building Needs in Sudan to Manage Global Environmental Issues (NCSA) project with the support of the Global Environment Facility. The project hopes to provide national actors in Sudan with the opportunity to articulate a thorough, participatory, self-assessment and analysis of national capacity building needs, priorities and constraints which currently prevent the achievement of the global environmental objectives as set forth in the Rio conventions and related international instruments.


To address these needs, in October 2005 UNDP launched the National Capacity Self-Assessment project with the support of the Global Environment Facility. The project hopes to provide national actors in Sudan with the opportunity to articulate a thorough, participatory, self-assessment and analysis of national capacity building needs, priorities and constraints standing against achievements of global environmental objectives as set forth in the Rio conventions and related international instruments.

Objectives
The overall objective of the National Capacity Self-Assessment project is to build on previous and ongoing activities related to capacity development, provide a general overview of capacity development needs, and identify capacity constraints related to the management of Sudan’s global environmental commitments, including the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), United Nations Convention on Biodiversity (UNCBD), and United Nations Convention on Combating Desertification (UNCCD).

The Specific objectives are as follows:
• Analyze the cross-cutting issues and synergies on identification of options for capacity development, and in-depth analysis of priority options.
• Prepare a national assessment report, setting out critical capacity development, constraints and strategy and action plan of National Capacity Self-Assessment to meet prioritized capacity needs.
• Establish a mechanism for monitoring and evaluating progress made by the Government of Sudan to meet capacity development needs.

Snapshots of the project's major achievements
NCSA reporting includes stocktaking and thematic analysis of priorities for implementation under the UNFCCC, UNCBD, UNCCD and were identified through the following consultation process:
• Identified the following key interventions for the UNCCD: environmental policies, extension, community mobilization, rural development, indigenous knowledge, intermediate technologies, and renewable energy. Several institutions were also identified to be involved in the action plan such as the Remote Sensing Authority (RSA), Sudanese Environment Conservation Society (SECS), and the Environment and Natural Resources Research Institute (ENRRI).

• Identified the following key interventions for the UNCBD: the need for a lead authority to supervise the implementation of the National Biodiversity Strategic Action Plan (NBSAP), awareness, improvement of institutional capacities, revision of institutional policies, structures and affiliations and building an information centre for biodiversity. The need to revise land use patterns and the urgency of developing national land use planning was also identified.

• Identified the following key priorities for the UNFCCC: the need to revise policies, structures, and affiliations of institutions related to climate change. Upgrade institutional capacities to deal with climate change and to build up capacities for implementation of the National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA), and enhance capacities of universities and research centres and enhance the role of civil society organizations in climate change related issues.

• Identified the linkages between Multilateral Environmental Agreements and recommended the following actions: policy, legal and institutional reform, the need for land use reform and planning, emphasis on shelter belts and alternative energy sources, promotion of environmental education and research and involving NGOs and CBO’s. The need for government commitment and funding is also stressed, and the role of the Higher Council for Environment and Natural Resources as a coordinating body housing a database on environmental issues has also been emphasized.

 
 
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