The 25th Conference of the Parties (COP25) has entered its second week in Madrid. The COP, under the presidency of the Chilean government with logistical support from the Spanish government, has the big task of inspiring greater climate ambition to limit global heating to well below 2 degrees Celsius.
COP25 needs to firmly lay the foundations for 2020 when countries must submit their updated or renewed Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
There are several Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) countries that are answering the call for more ambition given the increasing evidence of the economic and social benefits that carbon neutral and climate-resilient development can bring. At the IDB, we are excited to begin the next decade providing the necessary support to support this transformation.
Through the NDC Invest platform, the IDBG is working to support LAC countries to raise the ambition of their NDCs and to develop long-term strategies to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.
For this purpose, NDC Invest has created an ambition framework for the LAC region, adaptable to the different national contexts of individual countries. For us, the framework needs to provide countries with the following key elements to make the second generation of NDCs transformative:
- Ambitious: Aligned to resilient and carbon-neutral long-term planning instruments or strategies (such as LTS and National Adaptation Plans), as well as relevant national planning instruments.
- Effective: Designed, executed and monitored by an effective institutional framework, defining clear roles, responsibilities, and coordination mechanisms among stakeholders and key institutions.
- Participatory: Designed and implemented by a wide range of stakeholders from the early stages.
- Implementable: Framed under a finance strategy that includes an investment plan, alignment to public and private finance, and a greening of the financial sector.
The process to update Suriname’s NDC is a fitting example of how NDC Invest supports LAC countries to apply the ambition framework. The Government of Suriname embarked on the path of updating its first NDC in 2019, with the main objective to raise ambition and align the new NDC to national planning instruments. NDC Invest, EQO-NIXUS and ILACO led this effort, adjusting the framework to the country’s reality.
What makes this NDC more ambitious?
- A wider scope: Suriname’s first NDC included unconditional and conditional commitments of maintaining 93% forest cover of the country, which makes it one of the countries with the greatest forest cover worldwide, and an important carbon sink. Additionally, it included an unconditional commitment to maintaining renewable electricity generation above 25%, and specific actions to increase climate resilience. In this new version, Suriname maintains these two sectors, committing to maintain the 93% forest cover and to increase the 25% of renewable energy to 35%, and includes two additions: agriculture and transport. Together, these two sectors cover around 70% of the country’s emissions. On adaptation, the NDC aligns with long-term resiliency goals, included in the new National Adaptation Plan.
- Inclusion of valuable elements to facilitate its implementation: In each of the sectors included, the updated NDC provides packages of measures (both conditional and unconditional) that aim to advance on the implementation of the NDC. For instance, in the forest sector, Suriname commits to maintain the 93% forest cover through concrete actions such as the implementation of the recently approved REDD+ strategy, among several other measures. In the electricity sector, the commitment is to maintain the renewable electricity generation above 35%, and includes, among other measures, the adoption of a renewable energy law and implementation of fiscal measures to promote energy efficiency. In the agriculture and transport sector, Suriname commits to strengthen capacity and improve research programs to develop a climate-smart sector, and to update the Transport Master Plan, respectively (among several other measures). Another important characteristic of the new NDC is the inclusion of a list of projects identified and prioritized through participatory sectoral dialogues that would allow the country to move forward with the implementation of each one of these measures.
- It was built through a participatory process: The NDC was built with substantive inputs from three rounds of dialogue with sectoral stakeholders, and parallel meetings with representatives from indigenous and tribal peoples. Such a process enabled a realistic and consensual NDC elaboration process, which provides a greater sense of ownership among relevant key actors that will be key for its implementation.
With these elements, Suriname was able to develop an enhanced and more ambitious NDC, which recognizes the country’s restrictions and limitations and commits to firmly address them to achieve a more resilient and carbon-neutral development. With NDC Invest support, Suriname becomes one of the first LAC countries to hear the call for more ambition at COP25.
Photo: Daniella Restrepo (IDB)