Inside Africa blog

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How Africa is implementing COP 21

Laura Kiwelu

In the run up to COP21 taking place in Paris from 30 November to 11 December 2015, we have created an online resource summarising the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Secretariat submitted by nations in advance of COP21. We have summarised the positions of the following African jurisdictions:

In the African context, climate change priorities are focused on significantly reducing Green House Gas (GHG) emissions, implementing the necessary legal framework and attracting a large amount of international financial support.

Ethiopia has made a bold commitment in wanting to reduce its GHG emissions by 64 per cent from its business as usual (BAU) emissions by 2030. In comparison, Kenya, Morocco and Tanzania aim to reduce their GHG emissions by 30 per cent, 13 per cent and between 10-20 per cent respectively. Morocco’s INDC provides for an additional reduction of 19 per cent to be achieved depending on the conditions. This would mean a total reduction of 32 per cent in GHG emissions below BAU emission levels by 2030.

All four countries have indicated there is a crucial need to promote renewable energy and energy efficiency by implementing action plans, framework policies and attractive legislation at both national and county level. The Ethiopian parliament have made steps towards this by approving the new energy law proclamation 810/2013 and introducing the Ethiopian Energy Authority (EEA), which is currently responsible for private energy investments in the country. Although there are currently no national energy efficiency targets place, the Ethiopian government has assigned duties to the EEA regarding the promotion of energy efficiency, conservation and energy development.

Kenya is also in the process of finalising a National Climate Change Framework Policy and a Climate Change Bill.  Tanzania, on the other hand, will use the Principles of the United National Framework Convention on Climate Change as a guide to help implement their INDC, which was prepared in alignment with Tanzania’s Development Vision 2025 and Zanzibar Vision 2020.  Morocco is currently exploring carbon pricing instruments and has launched a voluntary carbon offset programme which helps reduce GHG emissions, as well as tackling other issues.

However, despite the legislative progress, a determining factor in achieving the targeted goals set out in each country’s INDC is the amount of funding received. Collectively over US$260 billion is required. This highlights the importance of financial support from international investors and the vital role they play in helping nations reduce GHG emissions.

 

The author would like to acknowledge the contributions of Obi Imachukwu and Marcel Buys in the production of this overview and the associated summaries.

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