Transport & Mobility
The world is not on track to limit global warming to an increase of 1.5°C, one of the goals of the Paris Agreement. The transport sector, which produces a quarter of all energy-related emissions, is a major contributor to this problem. As 95% of the world's transport energy still comes from burning fossil fuels, emissions from this sector are expected to increase without a major change of direction.
New and emerging technologies such as electric vehicles or zero-carbon energy sources are critical to mitigate climate change in the transport sector. There are transport solutions that can help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement. Such solutions vary from shifting to more sustainable modes of transportation such as walking, cycling, and public transit to investing in electric vehicles and other low-carbon transportation technologies. GFA experts have supported such measures in the transport sector through:
- Development of national standards and tools for the mitigation of GHG emissions
- Identification of public transport infrastructure needs
- Advice to cities and municipalities worldwide regarding the preparation of climate mitigation or adaptation infrastructure projects
- Preparation of environmental and social impact assessments necessary for transport- and mobility-related project,
- Integrated urban mobility plans with a focus on clean air and emission reduction
- Formulation of measures and capacity building for the improvement of urban transport
- Preparation of feasibility studies for electric vehicle roadmaps and policies
Many countries have committed to net-zero targets in limiting global warming to 1.5˚C and have pledged to focus their economic growth on climate-smart approaches. This means producing and consuming clean energy, moving to fuel-efficient transport systems, and adopting sustainable mining practices. It also means developing climate-smart agriculture and water systems.
The industrial sector is a vital source of wealth, prosperity, and social value on a global scale. Industrial companies produce about one-quarter of global GDP and employment, and they make products and materials that are integral to our daily lives. However, the industrial sector is also a major emitter of GHGs. Unless the industry can lower its emissions, the world will struggle to reach the GHG reduction targets set under the Paris Agreement.
In that respect, GFA is in a position to provide support in:
- Feasibility studies and project preparation
- Developing low-carbon sectorial strategies
- Impact assessments considering GHG emission reduction scenarios
- Promoting low-carbon farm practices in the agriculture and livestock industries
- Measures to decarbonize industrial sectors, including energy, chemical industry, cement and steel production, and the building sector
Cities & buildings
The construction sector is growing rapidly. It is estimated that 230 billion square meters of new infrastructure will be built worldwide over the next 40 years. This sector is a major source of pollution as it consumes 36% of global energy and produces 39% of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.
Mitigating climate change requires reducing GHG emissions. One way to do this is to decarbonize the built environment so hat emissions from existing buildings, new construction, and other infrastructure will be reduced and ultimately eliminated.
Mitigation strategies for climate change in buildings focus on promoting energy saving, using renewable energy, managing waste properly, integrating vegetation into building projects, and incorporating elements that facilitate non-motorized transport. GFA can support such activities and strategies through:
- Climate proofing and environmental impact assessments development
- Capacity building for renewable energy and energy efficiency investments in cities
- Institutional and financial feasibility studies
- Pilot projects regarding the transition to low-carbon energy grids
- Measures to decarbonize the building sector
Carbon sequestration involves the storage of carbon dioxide to prevent its entry into the atmosphere. Plant-rich landscapes such as forests, grasslands, and rangelands capture approximately 25% of global carbon emissions. In that regard, forests play a vital role in mitigating climate change as they capture CO2 and store it in their biomass and soils.
Additionally, preventing deforestation helps maintain the stored carbon within the forests. This avoids CO2 release back into the atmosphere, which would contribute to climate change. Apart from carbon sequestration, forests offer numerous other advantages, including the reduction of air pollution, water storage, and biodiversity protection, all of which GFA can assist by means of:
- Estimating the carbon sequestration potential from forestry and agroforestry activities
- Identifying baseline scenarios
- Developing biomass supply assessments
- Promoting minimum or no tillage farm practices in agriculture
Renewable Energies & Energy Efficiency
GHG emissions linked to the delivery of energy services significantly contribute to climate change. Currently, approximately 85% of the primary energy driving global economies is derived from burning fossil fuels, which is responsible for 56.6% of all human-caused GHG emissions.
In the pursuit of sustainable social and economic development, it is crucial to have reliable and affordable access to energy resources, particularly renewable ones, which can help mitigate climate change. To achieve this, different strategies may be required at various stages of economic development. The provision of energy services should prioritize minimal environmental impacts and GHG emissions reduction. GFA can contribute to related measures through:
- Renewable energies market development
- Identification of opportunities for green hydrogen production
- Skills development and decentralization of capacities related to clean energies
- Energy policy framework strengthening
- Advice on construction designs for microgrids and individual solutions
- Energy-efficient and environmentally friendly construction of public and private buildings
- Feasibility studies for greener and more efficient energy alternatives
GHG modeling is the process of using mathematical and statistical methods to estimate GHG emissions from a variety of sources. These models can help governments develop policies to reduce emissions, businesses make decisions about their operations, and scientists study the causes and effects of climate change.
These processes can be complex and challenging tasks but are essential tools for understanding and addressing climate change mitigation. As countries, sectors, and communities become more aware of the need to reduce GHG emissions, GFA supports the provision of accurate models, results, and tailored solutions as needed.
Green & circular economy
Currently, material extraction and use are major contributors to global GHG emissions. Studies show that circular economy strategies can help reduce these emissions by 40% by 2050. Implementing circular economy strategies is crucial for countries to expedite the shift to a low-carbon economy, safeguard the natural environment, and generate meaningful job opportunities. This transition will require adequate investment and finance as well as knowledge transfer, community-building, and training.
In this context, GFA is working with countries to scale and accelerate this transformative change by integrating circular and green economy approaches that consider climate change, sustainable energy, food and agriculture, and waste management. By doing so, GFA aims at scaling up and accelerating such positive changes through:
- Business development service studies
- Capacity building and cross-learning
- Awareness raising measures
- Developing conceptual frameworks in green innovations
- Technical support on the origination and preparation of projects
- Promotion of compost, water reuse, and reduction of post-harvest losses
- Developing Life Cycle Assessments (LCA)
The depletion of the ozone layer and the issue of climate change are two environmental concerns that are closely related on a global scale. The Montreal Protocol has successfully phased out the production and use of ozone-depleting substances (ODSs), which has contributed to the mitigation of climate change. ODSs are also greenhouse gases, and the reduction of their use has led to a decrease in the amount of heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere. Moreover, it is anticipated that the recovery of the ozone layer will help reduce global warming by up to 0.5 degrees Celsius by the year 2100.
HEAT, a member of the GFA GROUP, has been actively involved in the implementation of the Montreal Protocol. The company’s main services have been:
- Policy advisory services in ozone protection
- Development of guidelines and roadmaps to phase out halogenated hydrocarbons (HCFC) and phase down hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerants in developing and developed countries
- Capacity building to catalyze local action in partner countries on safe technologies and management of natural refrigerants
- Support in the implementation of HCFC Phase-Out-Management Plans (HPMPs) and Kigali HFC Implementation Plans
- Feasibility duties for the use and expansion of natural refrigerants, for instance in the refrigeration and, air conditioning (RAC) sector