HQ: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Number of staff: 1,494
Number of locations: 5
Total emissions: 9,179 tonnes CO2 equivalent
Emissions per staff member: 6.1 tonnes CO2 equivalent
Emissions from air travel: 8,713 tonnes CO2 equivalent
Air travel as a proportion of total emissions: 95%
Air travel per staff member: 5.8 tonnes CO2
Building-related emissions: 3.6 kg CO2 equivalent per square metre
“It is the vision of our Secretariat and the five sub-regional offices that we shall become climate-neutral by 2014.”
Abdoulie Janne, Executive Secretary, Economic Commission for Africa (ECA)
“Climate change is the most serious environmental threat facing our planet. While promoting economic and social development of its member states, ECA team members have to travel, organize meetings and conferences to ensure that technical assistance to institutions driving the regional integration agenda is received timely and efficiently. However, we are committed to harmonizing our processes and work plans to ensure that ECA gradually become climate-neutral by encouraging more efficient travel, improved access to e-communication, ensuring that all necessary meetings, conferences become green meetings, and last but not least improving the energy efficiency of our facilities and installations. It is the vision of our Secretariat and the five sub-regional offices that we shall become climate-neutral by 2014.”
The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) was established by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations (UN) in 1958 as one of the UN's five regional commissions. ECA's mandate is to promote the economic and social development of its member States, foster intra-regional integration, and promote international cooperation for Africa's development.
ECA is facing challenges both in terms of personnel motivation and resources allocated to carry out greenhouse gas reduction programmes.
1. Optimizing use of energy and water by implementing automated irrigation project for the Secretariat’s 56’647 square metre green area. The project included upgrading the conventional hose-and-tap irrigation system to pop-up sprinklers, drip irrigation and a weather monitoring system, incorporated with variable-frequency drive (VFD) motors. Underground water was used, from a depth of 160 metres, and raised using VFD pumps.
2. Evacuated tube solar water heaters are used to feed two kitchen installations and bathrooms. ECA also uses solar lighting pipes or “light tubes” in selected areas of our facilities (these devices capture sunlight and convey it to the rooms below).
3. Ensuring that ECA does not damage the environment by recycling ozone-depleting refrigerants with a device that removes such substances from refrigerators and HVAC systems requiring maintenance. The gas is then pumped back into the appliance rather than being released into the atmosphere.
4. Use of Building Automation and Control System (BACS) to manage lighting energy for the 42’184 square metre Conference Centre. This is supplemented by coordinating with the security team to ensure that lights are switched off manually in unoccupied buildings and in off working hours.
Planned but not yet implemented.
ECA has the following strategy for its climate neutrality: