October 10, 2022
PHNOM PENH – The government has set a goal of reducing emissions by 42 per cent by 2030 and plans to triple the amount in its national budget dedicated to accomplishing this in order to contribute to resolving the global climate change crisis, even though Cambodia is a low emissions country.
At an October 6 International Inter-Party Conference held via video conference on “Environmental Policy and Sustainable Development” by the Russian Federation, Prime Minister Hun Sen confirmed the participation of Cambodia in environmental protection efforts led by his Cambodian People’s Party (CPP).
At the conference, Hun Sen highlighted the Cambodian government’s efforts to contribute to resolving the global climate change crisis, with Cambodia setting the goal of reducing emissions by 42 per cent by 2030.
The head of the Cambodian government also highlighted that in order to tackle the crisis, the Cambodian government would triple the amount of the national budget dedicated to this task.
Hun Sen addressed the conference, saying that although Cambodia is a small country and emitted less greenhouse gases than most, it remained committed to tackling global climate change.
“We have strived to increase our participation in tackling global environmental challenges, including climate change, in line with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities,” he said.
He added that Cambodia had also made green development and climate change mitigation a crucial component to ensure the resilience of the Cambodian economy in the aftermath of the Covid-19 crisis and that a new investment law in Cambodia would encourage investment in green energy, the green economy and environmental protection.
Heng Kimhong, research and advocacy programme manager at the Cambodian Youth Network (CYN), said that the government’s commitment to reduce emissions by 42 per cent by 2030 is a good policy framework.
However, he remained concerned about the implementation of this policy, as the government has set too short a deadline to accomplish it because present-day Cambodia is a country that emits a lot of carbon through the use of fossile fuels and particularly through the use of cars with high emissions.
He has so far seen the efforts and attention of the Cambodian government to tackle climate change such as the government vowing not to add any more development projects to coal-fired power plants and to ban hydropower dams along its stretch of the Mekong River, which are projects that would add large amounts of carbon emissions to the atmosphere.
However, Kimhong wanted to see more efforts by the Cambodian government to conserve forest cover, in waste management and chemical management in the agriculture and agro-industrial sector.