0-Silvia-CalvoSilvia Calvó Armengol, Environment, Agriculture and Sustainability Minister of Andorra

The past 30 of March took place for the first time in Andorra the celebration of the World Metrological Day (WMO). Through this act, people and institutions that have contributed to improve the meteorological knowledge in Andorra received an acknowledgement. During the act it was also announced the launching of the Volunteers Meteorological Observers Network.

Which is the importance that Andorra gives to the citizens' science as a contribution of the scientific knowledge about climate change variability and impacts?

Thanks to the citizen participation in the systematic observation of the environment, Andorra had an historical pre modernization climate data series, before the modernization of the country allowed to establish the first permanent records of temperature and precipitation in 1934.

An example of this participation is the precipitation records collected by the apothecary of the Valleys of Andorra Mr. Antoni Armengol Dallerès since 1896 or the precipitation data series conducted by Mr. Louis Molné Salines since 1909. Since 1983, during the winter season, there are nivo-meteorological observers at all the ski resorts in the country.

These observations carried out by citizens' were the start point of the meteorology in Andorra and have been crucial to climate studies of Andorra. As an acknowledgement of the citizen participation in collecting metrological data, in 2017 the Government of Andorra have created the Volunteers Meteorological Observers Network, to which people that are currently providing meteorological data and atmosphere state information is joining.
Therefore, for the Ministry is important to keep this citizen participation on and promote the interest of people about meteorology and other related topics.

One of the missions of the OPCC is to promote the production of scientific knowledge and disseminate it to develop and select the more effective adaptation measures to limit the negative impacts of climatic change. How do you think that this scientific knowledge has to be transferred to society and more specifically to public and private management stakeholders?

The dissemination tools currently under use are allowing us to easily achieve all the sectors of the society, both public and private. It is necessary to ensure that the information spreaded by these channels is valid and useful for decision makers.

Each year my Ministry publishes the environmental indicators report including annual data series of temperatures, precipitations and snow falls. We also elaborate climatic bulletins monthly and seasonal bulletins available in digital format. We can confirm that this information generate interest among the population and is frequently consulted.

Therefore, in this field, like in the other topics concerning environmental issues, we make a lot of effort in spreading periodically the maximum available information in order to raise the awareness of population concerning these topics.

In 2015 the Climate Change Adaptation Process of Andorra was launched. What is its situation today?

The participatory process of climate change adaptation in Andorra (PAACC) allowed us to identify a set of 94 adaptation measures regrouped and classified in 43 measures applicable to various economic sectors, in order to facilitate the future set up of a proper Adaptation Strategy in Andorra.
Adaptation measures concerns mainly planning areas related to the following sectors: energy, water management, tourism, transport and natural hazards. Secondly, the main actions proposed were more operational concerning nature conservation, especially for the agriculture and livestock, public health and energy.

By now some of these adaptation measures have been already implemented. In the agriculture and livestock, some of these measures include the promotion of mountain ecotourism in order to reduce primary sector vulnerabilities, as well as the establishment of quality label system, and the promotion and sale of national Official Seal Andorran Agricultural Product, which allows differentiation of local and proximity products. In the energy sector, we are working in the energy infrastructure sector plan, with the aim of diversifying renewable energy production and strengthen energetic sovereignty.

During the last World Climate Summit, COP22 in Marrakech, the Government of Andorra organized a side event about the impacts of climate change on mountain areas, to which the Observatory was invited to participate. Which do you think is the better strategy to join energies to enhance the visibility of mountain areas and their vulnerability to climate change?

Andorra is a country located entirely among mountains and therefore mountain treats and problems are at the heart of all our policies. The best strategy to make mountain areas more visible is to disseminate among society the importance of mountains and their importance in providing goods and services, not only to people living in mountain areas but also to people living in the plains. Some examples of goods and services provided for our mountain region are water resources regulation, the maintenance of a good water quality, carbon stocks by forests and peat bogs and good air quality standards, as well as the preservation of natural habitats and high biodiversity. Biodiversity is also a source of essential goods and services. In addition, we must add the ethical and aesthetic importance of mountain areas as a space of calm and inspiration, leisure and sports practices that allows people to achieve milestones and personal achievements.

It must be spread that mountains around the world are especially sensitive to the effects of climate change. Available scientific data shows up that the effects of climate change are occurring more rapidly and severely in mountain regions than in others, which is putting in danger the capacity of these bioregions to provide as the above mentioned goods and services.

Finally, how do you envision the future of the OPCC?

The OPCC has to be a reference body of knowledge on the effects of climate change and the actions needed for adaptation in the Pyrenees, taking into account the specific characteristics of each region or country of the massif. The knowledge that the OPCC can collect and disseminate has a great added value because it is the result of networking and the exchange of actions and project results over the years.

For this reason, if we talk about climate issues, the OPCC must be conceived in a long term scale vision, always keeping this cooperation and exchange spirit throughout the Pyrenees geography.
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