The World Bank recently launched the Cambodia Climate and Development Report (CCDR), which examines and presents recommendations for achieving sustainable development in response to climate change.

The report, released on October 31, sheds light on several crucial findings, emphasising the far-reaching impact of climate change across various economic sectors, potentially exacerbating existing development challenges if not adequately addressed. The nation currently grapples with escalating floods and soaring temperatures, intensifying these challenges.

The report underscores that recent developments, particularly deforestation and the loss of natural wetlands, have heightened climate change-related risks. However, it also identifies climate change adaptation as an opportunity to yield more significant returns for both private and public investments.

Mariam Sherman, the World Bank representative to Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos, highlighted the Kingdom’s aspirations to achieve upper-middle-income status by 2030 and high-income by 2050. However, the challenge lies in climate change, which can result in both direct and indirect consequences.

She pointed out that Cambodia is among the most vulnerable nations to flooding and heat waves. These severe climate events disproportionately impact the country’s most impoverished communities, and climate change poses a significant threat to the nation’s economy and the well-being of its citizens.

“Our CCDR report offers multiple recommendations to address the challenges of climate change. We’ve observed Cambodia’s efforts in developing various policies and documents, such as an environmental code, as part of its strategy to mitigate climate change risks and achieve its environmental goals,” she remarked.

Ros Seilava, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Economy and Finance, highlighted the significance of climate change in the recent G20 discussions held in the Indian capital New Delhi. World leaders have collectively committed to a 43 per cent reduction in Co2 emissions compared to 2009 levels. This pledge means that developing nations will also be required to make substantial reductions in emissions by 2030.

He said the government’s Pentagonal Strategy recognises the critical role of addressing climate change. This strategy has introduced resilience, inclusivity and sustainable development as fundamental components in the pursuit of mitigating the impact of climate change.

“Although achieving carbon neutrality is our long-term goal, we see that this work can also contribute to the competitive and sustainable economic development of the Kingdom,” he said.