Federal Coordinating Lead Author:
David Reidmiller, U.S. Global Change Research Program
Lead Author:
Katherine Weingartner, U.S. Global Change Research Program/ICF (through September 2017)
Contributing Authors:
Apurva Dave, U.S. Global Change Research Program/ICF

Looking Abroad: How Other Nations Approach a National Climate Assessment

Overview

The government of Mongolia has produced two Mongolia Assessment Reports on Climate Change (MARCC), in 2009 and 2014. The assessments are intended to serve as a definitive source of information on the latest research on climate change as it relates to Mongolia. This includes observed and projected climate changes; impacts on environmental, economic, and social sectors; and information on societal responses to climate change. The findings and recommendations of the MARCC reports are intended to feed into the country’s national development programs and climate action plans.

Assessment Mandate and Objectives

While there is no explicit legal mandate for the MARCC, it does exist within an evolving national legal and policy framework to address climate challenges and meet Mongolia’s obligations under international agreements on the environment and climate change. Under the country’s revised Law on Air (2012), the Ministry of Environment and Tourism manages a Climate Change Coordination Office (CCCO), which implements Mongolia’s commitments to the UNFCCC and integrates climate change issues into other national sectors. In addition, a National Action Programme on Climate Change (NAPCC), approved by Parliament in 2011, defines strategic objectives and outlines specific activities to integrate climate change concerns into national development plans and action plans. The MARCC 2014 report is intended to support the NAPCC by presenting the most current knowledge of observed and projected climate change. It does so by describing climate impacts on human and natural systems, highlighting strategies and technology needs for mitigation/adaptation measures, presenting a national greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory, and explaining the policy framework for climate action in Mongolia. The report is designed for use by a wide audience: government officials, policy- and decision-makers, members of professional societies and scientific communities, educators and students, and the general public.

Assessment Process

The MARCC 2014 report was prepared under the supervision of the chair of the CCCO, with logistical and technical support from CCCO staff. Financial support for preparation and publication of the report was provided by the German development agency GIZ (German Corporation for International Cooperation) on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. Subject matter experts wrote each chapter. The document was originally drafted in Mongolian and then translated into English. In its presentation of current and projected climate change, MARCC 2014 made use of the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report (AR5).

Assessment Content Structure

The MARCC 2014 report begins with basic information on observed and projected climate change in Mongolia, organized at the national and regional level. Subsequent chapters organize the impacts of climate change sectorally, on a range of natural and human systems. For natural systems, the report focuses on soil and pasture, forest ecosystems, fauna, water resources, natural disasters, land degradation and desertification, and dust/sand storms. For human systems, the report focuses on animal husbandry, agriculture, poverty and human development, infrastructure, and human health. Later chapters review adaptation options and possible mitigation measures, including a national GHG inventory and related technology issues. The final chapter covers policy frameworks, legal instruments, and institutional arrangements.

International Dimensions

While neither the MARCC 2009 nor the MARCC 2014 explicitly considers the international dimensions of climate change impacts on Mongolia, both reports do provide descriptions of the international policy setting within which Mongolia’s climate change efforts exist. In particular, the MARCC 2014 describes in detail Mongolia’s recent engagement with a range of international organizations to develop its domestic climate change policy and related interventions, in general. In addition, both the 2009 and 2014 MARCC reports were produced with financial and technical support from international partners.


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