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Project funding priorities for the Nordic working group on Climate and Air (NKL) in 2021

The Nordic working group on Climate and Air’s criteria for prioritizing projects and activities in 2021 are based on objectives from the Programme for Nordic Co-operation on the Environment and Climate 2019–2024.

The Nordic working group on Climate and Air (NKL) is interested in promoting:

  • project outcomes that are relevant to the administration and policies of the Nordic countries. 
  • project results that strengthen the Nordic countries’ negotiating strongholds and priorities within international fora. The activities could include policy relevant projects regarding measures designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollutants, such as effective carbon pricing instruments.
  • projects that support and strengthen the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in the 2030 Agenda. This includes possible synergies between the implementation of the SDGs and the work within fields of air pollution and climate change, but also their interaction with other SDGs.
  • new knowledge, among others on the effects of air pollution on climate change and climate change on the effects of air pollutants as well as knowledge on the effects from climate forcers and air pollutants on global warming, environment and health.
  • projects that are expected to contribute to relevant changes towards the green transition within the Nordic countries in accordance with the ministerial declaration on Nordic Carbon Neutrality and projects that contribute to greater energy efficiency, a reduced environmental footprint, and lower emissions and levels of air pollutants and/or greenhouse gases  

A prerequisite for funding under this call is that the project’s structure include broad and effective dissemination of project results to policy-relevant audiences.

The Nordic working group on Climate and Air’s criteria for prioritizing projects and activities in 2021 are based on objectives from the Programme for Nordic Co-operation on the Environment and Climate 2019–2024. NKL wants to focus on projects that address  climate and air pollution issues in the Nordic Region, the Arctic and globally.

The overall aim of NKL group’s project activity is to contribute to the knowledge base supporting international negotiations and actively pursue the ambitious implementation of international agreements on climate change and air pollution issues, with the Paris Agreement as a key focus in terms of climate change mitigation, adaptation and finance and the work under the auspices of the UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution as key focus for the work towards reducing harmful air pollution.

NKL seeks to prioritize projects with the following focus areas in 2021:

Synergies between climate and clean air policies

  • New knowledge about climate change and the effects of air pollution on human health and welfare, and the interaction between these, as well as the effects on biodiversity – especially in the Arctic and areas bordering the Nordic Region

  • Consequences of climate policies on air pollution and consequences of air pollution policies on climate change (emissions, concentrations, exposures) and identification of sectors where further policy action is needed to improve air quality and exposure to air pollutants (Integrated assessment modelling etc.)

  • Combining positive side effects on air and noise pollution when scaling up climate mitigation measures in the Nordic cities/capitals 

  • Finding common methods for assessing critical loads for nitrogen et al. and measuring effects on biodiversity 

  • Strategies for climate change and air pollution friendly recovery after the corona crises

Air pollution mitigation measures and policy support

  • Activities and measures to reduce emissions of transboundary air pollution in the areas bordering the Nordic Region, the Arctic countries, and other countries within UNECE Air Convention as part of efforts pertaining to its Gothenburg Protocol.

  • Contributions to improve the basis for decisions for international agreements and EU directives on the prevention and reduction of emissions of harmful, acidifying and eutrophying transboundary pollution and emissions of mercury, PAHs and dioxins etc.

  • Scaling up air pollution measures – an overview or communication of Nordic air pollution mitigation solutions that could help other countries cut emissions 

  • Evaluation of effectiveness of innovative mitigation measures in the areas of small-scale wood combustion and road dust (the importance of road dust sources in relation to microplastics) 

  • Suggestions on further development of emission inventories (sectors, pollutants) to support the understanding of air pollutants in the Nordic countries

  • Economic consequences of outdoor air pollution in the Nordic countries and neighboring regions in the coming decades which illustrates the costs of inaction and benefits of further measures 

  • Governance, impact, and cost analyses for international agreements and EU directives for reducing emissions of small particulates and nitrogen oxide in the Nordic Region caused by traffic, working machinery, industry, shipping, agriculture, and heat generation

Climate change, Paris Agreement implementation and a green economic recovery post-corona

  • Initiatives that assess and enhance the collective efforts of outreach and sharing of best practices, processes and impacts of Nordic climate legislation and climate policy frameworks with long-term objectives, including examples of green economic stimulus in the context of green economic recovery post covid-19 

  • Projects that will contribute to raising the level of ambition of collective climate commitments over time in line with the ambition mechanism of the Paris Agreement

  • Pursue a shift in financial flows so that they contribute to a circular, climate-resilient low-emission development in line with the EU Green Deal objectives and the Paris Agreement. This includes methods to mobilize private-sector climate finance and to redirect financial flows towards renewable and affordable clean energy and fossil-free solutions, as well as climate friendly, green economic recovery

  • Develop and improve the efficiency of EU emissions trading and/or policies promoting the reduction of emissions in the non-trading sector in pursuit of an enhanced EU climate target to 2030.  This could include assessments of options for extending the EU-ETS to additional sectors, or assessments of the cost-effective and climate-efficient distribution of mitigation measures in the trading vs. non-trading sectors over time

  • Activities that support and encourage local governments, cities and municipalities to step up their efforts towards carbon neutrality 

  • Support activities that respond to the findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and science based policy development

  • Promote effective carbon pricing, voluntary offsets and the Nordic and global work on Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform

Pooling of two or many priority areas within a project proposal will be positively received.