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27 September 2011

Mott MacDonald to advise on Mongolian Clean Air Fund

Mott MacDonald has been appointed by the Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism in Mongolia to advise on the Ulaanbaatar Clean Air Fund. The initiative aims to support the Government of Mongolia in the implementation of a legal, technical, financial and institutional framework for cleaner fuel use to reduce air pollution in Ulaanbaatar.

Mongolia has an extremely harsh winter climate with households requiring heating for an eight-month period. Midwinter (late December and early January) daytime temperatures range from -10°C to -30°C, and can drop to as low as -40°C at night. Ulaanbaatar, where nearly half of the Mongolian population live, is the coldest capital city in the world with an annual average temperature of -1.3°C. The increased winter heating requirements in the city result in severe air pollution, a major cause of serious respiratory problems among urban residents.

The replacement of stoves with upgraded models, along with the substitution of raw coal with a cleaner, coal-based fuel, which burns with lower emissions and greater efficiency, are widely seen as key actions to address a significant part of Ulaanbaatar’s air pollution problem.

Mott MacDonald, as leader of the expert team, will provide all required legal, economic, technical and administrative support to the relevant bodies to assist the Clean Air Fund.

During the coming winter a pilot project will be implemented to trial the financial and logistical support for the distribution and use of cleaner fuels. Mott MacDonald’s project director Caroline la Chapelle explained: “The focus of this pilot will assess whether inhabitants of the Ger districts are able to afford the cleaner fuels and will provide the relevant authorities with economic models as well as recommendations for a subsidy programme. After the winter season we will prepare a report on the design, implementation and results of the pilot including an assessment of the effectiveness of the programme. If the pilot is assessed as being successful the team will prepare a scaled up framework to be introduced in all districts of Ulaanbaatar.”


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