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A novel feature of the Paris Agreement is that industrialised countries, developing countries and emerging economies alike made a joint commitment for the first time to submit Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). In them, countries set out their plans for cutting greenhouse gas emissions and adapting to climate change.
The NDCs are at the very heart of the Paris Agreement. The aim is for them to be made increasingly ambitious over time and bring the international community closer to achieving the goals of the agreement. The parties to the agreement have therefore committed to submit new, improved NDCs every five years, starting in 2020. For the current NDCs still do not go far enough to allow the Paris climate goals to be reached. The current plans need to be implemented quickly but they also need to be made increasingly ambitious.
To help move forward implementation of the NDCs in line with the development goals of the 2030 Agenda, the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) joined together in 2016 with the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) and other partners to establish the global NDC Partnership.
The NDC Partnership at a glance
The NDC Partnership (External link) has 205 members (as of August 2022). Of these, 120 are countries, 49 are international organisations or development banks, and 36 are associate members (such as research institutes, international partnerships and globally operating associations). The Partnership is supported by a secretariat known as the “Support Unit”, which is hosted by the World Resources Institute (WRI) in Washington D.C., the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Bonn and the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), again in Bonn.
The aim of the Partnership is to align the goals of the Paris Agreement with the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and to work on achieving them in a coordinated way with the help of bilateral and multilateral donor programmes. Particular attention is paid to the issue of gender equity.
When an emerging economy or developing country joins the NDC Partnership, it can notify the Support Unit of the type of support it desires and requires to implement and advance its NDC priorities. Based upon these notifications, the Partnership’s development partners and implementing organisations offer a tailor-made package of advisory instruments, technical assistance and financing. Non-state partners such as non-governmental organisations, research institutions and the private sector are involved in this process.
To facilitate NDC implementation, it is essential to “translate” the climate goals into concrete policies, budget items and investment plans – for individual sectors such as energy and water, and also for the regional and municipal levels. The decisive aspect here is not only that investments contribute to a country’s climate-neutral and climate-resilient transformation, but also that they promote sustainable development for local communities.
A continuous exchange of knowledge and experience takes place within all NDC Partnership processes. Thus all participants can share lessons learned and successful approaches.
Country activities within the NDC Partnership have commenced in more than 80 member countries and in three regional initiatives. Further countries have notified support requirements.
The Paris climate agreement set 2020 as the first deadline for submission of updated NDCs. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it has taken many countries until 2021 or 2022. The NDC Partnership has supported developing countries and emerging economies with this process.
Germany supports the NDC Partnership both financially and politically. Since the Partnership’s launch, the German government has provided it with over 600 million euros in support. This sum includes approximately 15 million euros for the Partnership secretariat and 12 million for the Climate Action Enhancement Package (CAEP), a special programme to raise the ambition of NDCs.
CAEP supported countries specifically in revising their NDCs and formulating new, more ambitious climate action goals. Now, despite some delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 63 countries have submitted new or updated NDCs thanks to the support they have received through CAEP.
Countries across the world have planned, or are already implementing, economic stimulus packages totalling around 10 trillion US dollars in response to the COVID-19 crisis. It is important to ensure that these packages contribute to the goals of the Paris Agreement and that they make the world more resilient to future crises. This is another area in which the NDC Partnership is supporting its member countries. Through its Economic Advisory Initiative it has sent economic advisors to finance and planning ministries in a total of 34 member countries. The German government has provided direct support in 24 of these countries through its various implementing organisations.
The BMZ is also funding a number of projects and programmes being implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and international organisations such as the World Bank Group, the World Resources Institute (WRI) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). In this way, countries such as Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Honduras, Kenya, Namibia and Pakistan and also regional initiatives in the Pacific and Caribbean regions have been helped both to implement their NDCs and also, in some cases, to revise them and raise their ambition before the submission deadline for revised NDCs in 2020.
As at: 25/10/2022