The Paris Agreement on Climate Change calls for Parties to communicate by 2020 their updated nationally determined contributions (NDCs) and to do so every five years. In addition, Article §4.19 of the Paris Agreement invited Parties to communicate to the Secretariat of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) their long-term low greenhouse gas (GHG) emission development strategies (LTSs), that should aim to carry through to mid-century (e.g., 2050). These strategies are tools to help countries advance their development priorities with trajectories that also target the Paris Agreement objective of holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C and to pursue efforts to limit its increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.
According to the IPCC (2018), global net anthropogenic CO2 emissions need to decline by about 45% from the 2010 level by 2030 and reach net zero by around 2050 to achieve the 1.5°C goal. Despite these dire warnings, based on a review of updated NDCs submitted through 31 December 2020 (48 NDCs representing 75 Parties), UNFCCC concluded the estimated reductions were falling far short of what is required with total GHG emission levels projected in 2030 to be only 0.5% lower than in 2010. LTSs are therefore critical to enable long-term transformations and bolster more ambitious climate mitigation targets for NDCs on the path to carbon neutrality.
To kick-start a global UNDP dialogue on the role and strategies behind the LTS, its development process, contents and goals, the UNDP Climate Promise team is organizing a CoP Chat series where the initial session will provide background information, discuss key issues, and serve as a platform to share knowledge and experience from UNDP Country Offices that have experience in LTS development.