International Issues

Climate Change issues

Climate Change has been seen as one of the development challenges in the world. The most affected ones are those who have limited financial, technological and human capacity to adapt such impacts. Timor-Leste has been facing the impacts of climate change such as massive floods, droughts, landslides, fire hazards and other related extreme weather events.  In the same way, Timor-Leste is also facing slow onset events including temperature increase and sea level rise. These climate change impacts lead to decrease in agriculture production, food insecurity, water shortage, destruction of infrastructure, loss of human life as well as human displacement. Timor-Leste was hit by the tropical cyclone Seroja on 4th April 2021 with massive floods and landslides across the country causing loss of human lives and losses and damages to property. At least 42 people were killed and thousands of people lost their properties and were displaced.

The government of Timor-Leste has conducted various measures to tackle climate change at policy and technical level. The country ratified the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate change (UNFCCC) in 2006 and coming into force in 2007. The country has also ratified the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. By associating itself with these multilateral environmental agreements, Timor-Leste can easily tackle climate change together with international community since climate change greenhouse gas emissions are mainly caused by the developed countries. Therefore, adaptation and mitigation actions need to be undertaken by all countries in the world but the developed country parties can take the lead in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions and providing finance, technology and capacity building for developing country parties in order for facilitating adaptation and mitigation actions toward building more climate resilience of people, ecosystem and economic growth.

Under the UNFCCC, Timor-Leste has been actively involving in climate change processes in order to request the developed country parties to reduce their emissions as well as providing financial and technological support for developing countries to enable measures related to adaptation and mitigation.

Since 2009, Timor-Leste has been nominated by the Least Developed countries (LDCs) to be a coordinator for loss and damage at UN climate change process. Timor-Leste has also been nominated by the LDCs as representative of this group at the Executive Committee for Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage. In the same way, Timor-Leste has been nominated by the Asia Pacific Countries to represent this group in the Least Developed Countries Expert Group (LEG) under the UNCFCCC and the Paris Agreement. This means, Timor-Leste takes an important role for tackling climate change at regional and international level.

From national perspective, Timor-Leste has formulated its National Climate Change Policy, National Adaptation Program of Actions (NAPA) for addressing urgent and immediate adaptation actions, National Adaptation Plan (NAP) for addressing medium and long-term adaptation measures as well as submitting its national communications (first and second National Communications) to the UNFCCC. Based on adaptation priorities under the NAPA, Timor-Leste has received financial resources from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and Green Climate Fund (GCF) under the UNFCCC to support adaptation projects in the country in order to increase resilience.

Apart from the UNFCCC financial mechanisms, the country has also received financial support from bilateral cooperation such the EU and others to support adaptation and mitigation activities in the country. In addition, Timor-Leste has nominated its Special Envoy/Ambassador at Large for Climate Change to deal with climate change negotiations in order to gain more support from bilateral and multilateral cooperation, especially under the UNFCCC and its Paris Agreement for addressing both adaptation and mitigation measures in Timor-Leste.

Furthermore, the National Climate Change Directorate has been established under the Secretariat of State for Environment with a role to coordinate climate change related issues at national level. At political level, the Secretary of State for Environment is given mandate to coordinate and implement actions related to climate change adaptation and mitigation across the sectors in the country. Since then, coordination mechanism on climate change related issues has been undertaken by involving all actors including sectoral ministries, NGOs and civil societies.

Visit of Foreign Minister

  • HE. Dra. Adaljiza Xavier Reis Magno, visited Glasgow, in November 2021, to participated at High Level Segment (COP 26) and to participated in United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).


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International Issues