The road to Paris: the Macedonian case
12 Oct 2015 by Pavlina Zdraveva, Project Manager, Intended Nationally Determined Contributions, UNDP in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
In preparation for the Climate Change Conference in Paris this December, all participating countries have been asked to develop and determine their own national contributions to slowing climate change. These proposed measures are referred to as “Intended Nationally Determined Contributions” (INDCs), and to date, 121 countries have submitted one.
The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia submitted its INDC in August 2015, the 23rd country in the world to do so. This was the result of hard work and cooperation among various donors, institutions and stakeholders. The country’s INDC was based on detailed technical assessments performed by a large team of experts and on other relevant documents.
The final outcome of these efforts is the country’s official commitment to reduce CO2 emissions from fossil fuels by 30 percent over the next 15 years. This is a crucial commitment because CO2 emissions from fossil fuels currently account for almost 80 percent of the country’s total greenhouse gas emissions, with most emissions generated by the energy supply, buildings and the transport sector.
Developing the country’s INDC involved not only the considerable task of undertaking expert technical analyses in a tight timeframe with limited funds, but also the challenge of communicating to decision-makers and other stakeholders the specific implications of the actions proposed in the INDC.
The preparation process was designed to ensure the active engagement of everyone from ministries to the private sector at every step. Bringing people together in this way allowed them to exchange their experiences, as well as their know-how about the most effective measures to reduce emissions.
The INDC preparation also took analysis a step further by considering for first time both the environmental impacts and the economic and social aspects of each measure. This found that more than half of the planned emission reductions in the country can be achieved through relatively small investments.
The findings also highlighted that policies and measures to mitigate climate change had additional benefits, such as increased employment opportunities. For example, 6,000 green jobs can be created by 2030 by implementing energy-efficiency measures in buildings and by introducing low-carbon energy supply technologies that use renewables and gas.
To help clarify the aims of the INDC, we made this interactive infographic.
Starting point: Greenhouse gas emissions account for almost 80% of the country’s total emissions
Traveller: A Macedonian delegation on behalf of 2.2 million citizens
Destination: Paris 2015 Conference
Mid-point: The EU (as an EU candidate country, we have to take the EU level of ambition into account)
Routes: A 30 percent reduction of CO2 by 2030 (or 36 percent at a higher level of ambition)
Time: By 2030
Costs: €260-280 million per year (approximately 2.2 percent of national GDP)
Favour: Social aspects: by implementing energy efficiency measures in buildings and introducing low-carbon energy supply technologies, about 6,000 green jobs can be created by 2030.
Avoid: Business as usual scenario
Of course, more detailed analyses are still to come. We need to further identify vulnerable sectors, as well as additional adaptation measures. We also need to explore new opportunities for innovative growth and sustainable development.
One of the most important lessons learnt in preparing FYR Macedonia’s INDC has been the importance of including citizens as active players in the preparation process. This is also the message of our campaign to invite ideas from the public about ways to better combat climate change: #ItDependsOnYou.
In the lead-up to the COP21 Paris climate change conference, UNDP's experts and practitioners highlight the challenges and opportunities in addressing this global concern. For more information, visit www.undp.org/cop21