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Tunisia/ International seminar on ”Energies, Climate Change and Sustainable Development”

The fifth international seminar on “Energies, Climate Change and Sustainable Development” Monday opened works in Hammamet.

Experts and academics from Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, France, Belgium and Italy, alongside doctoral students and representatives from regional and international structures, took part in this meeting.

Focus of this congress is laid on ways to set up concrete and joint programmes to shield against the risks of climate changes which will be more perceptible as of 2050. Attendees of the symposium are also to discuss the need to draft a new international convention in this area as of 2012 the year when the Kyoto Protocol will come to an end. On the agenda of this three-day symposium, papers on climate change and the impact on country’s economies, renewable energies and new environmental techniques and preservation of sustainable development.

Minister of Higher Education, Scientific Research and Technology Lazhar Bououni stressed particularly the contribution of scientific research to reach the most efficient solutions to be shielded against the negative impact of these changes on societies and the economies.

He also reviewed the axes of the policy adopted by Tunisia which considers the environmental factor as a pillar of sustainable development.

He reminded, in this regard, of the four-year programme (2008-2011) designed to reduce energy consumption by 20% and produce 4% of the energy needs from renewable energies by 2011.

Ambassador, Head of the European Commission Delegation Adrianus Koetsenruijter said climate changes are a major concern for the European Union which has reiterated its commitment to combat all negative effects of climate change alongside its international partners.

For his part, Mr. Mohamed Belhoussine, representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) pointed to the close relation between the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals reducing poverty and the issue of climate change.

Mr. Raffaello Sarvani, representative of the World Bank commended Tunisia’s efforts in the field of prevention against the negative impact of the climate change, stressing the importance of mobilising all expertise to identify solutions likely to curb its impact. Participants also addressed items on the agenda of the Congress on Climate Change to be held in December 2009 by the United Nations.

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