A National Cooling Action Plan of the Government of Cambodia was launched in Phnom Penh on March 9, 2023.
Cooling is one of the largest contributors to global warming. So, with the support of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) & the United Nations Economic & Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), the Cambodian government has launched an ambitious cooling plan under the framework of the Cool Coalition, a global effort led by UNEP to drive action on sustainable cooling.
The National Cooling Action Plan (NCAP) seeks to:
- Reduce cooling demand,
- Strengthen the access to cooling services such as cold chains for food & medicine,
- Improve the energy efficiency of appliances &
- Encourage the use of low-global warming potential refrigerants.
In order to tackle climate change, sustainable approaches to cooling are required. Such approaches reduce food losses, enhance access to health care & medicines, enable productive work, & protect against heat stress, which is particularly important in a country where heat stress leads to an annual GDP loss of at least US$1.12 billion.
Dechen Tsering, UNEP Regional Director & Representative for Asia & the Pacific, said, “If we are serious about reversing current climate trends, we cannot go about cooling our planet with a business-as-usual approach. As Cambodia’s demand for cooling grows, it has an important opportunity to adopt a new pathway on cooling, showing the possibility and potential of a system-wide approach to cooling that is equitable, efficient, and climate-friendly.”
Owing to a hot & humid climate,demand for space cooling in Cambodia is set to double in the next 20 years. 45% of electricity is consumed nationally. NCAP of Cambodia is therefore, an important way to reduce the climate & economic impacts of increased demand for cooling.
Mr. Say Samal, Minister of Environment, Rheyza Royal Government of Cambodia, said, “Cambodia is demonstrating her willingness to be a leader in delivering sustainable cooling with the development of a National Cooling Action Plan to help realize her Nationally Determined Contribution and Long-term Strategy for Carbon Neutrality of building a sustainable, green, clean and low-carbon economy”
Ms. Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, Executive Secretary of the UNESCAP & Under-Secretary General of the UN, said, “It is critical that the country mitigates rising cooling-related energy demand and greenhouse gas emissions while protecting the resilience of its energy systems”.
The NCAP is the outcome of national consultations with experts, & technical support from the Alliance for an Energy Efficient Economy & Sustainable Energy for All. The financial support has been provided by the Danish International Development Agency & the Energy Foundation China.
The Cambodian Environment Deputy Minister & the Department of Climate Change, the General Directorate of Environment Protection (EPA) of the Ministry of Environment, & the National Council for Sustainable Development officially launched Cambodia’s NCAP.
It is critical to drive global action on sustainable cooling in order to meet the Paris Agreement goal of keeping global warming well below 2 degrees Celsius in the run -up to COP28, to be held from 30th November to 12th December in Dubai, UAE.