Montenegro increases climate ambition: Cut emissions by 35% within a decade

July 7, 2021

PODGORICA – 7. JULY – UNDP congratulates the Government of Montenegro on its commitment to decreasing  greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 35% below 1990 levels, by 2030 - aiming for decarbonization which implies transforming the energy sector, transportation, and industry.

The country’s increased climate ambition marks a renewed commitment to the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement where world leaders universally agreed to stop global warming at 1.5 degrees Celsius.  Under the Paris Agreement, countries agreed to develop climate pledges - also known as ‘Nationally Determined Contributions or NDCs - that taken together will help tackle global warming. The agreement also calls on countries to revise and strengthen their NDCs every five years. However, it is increasingly apparent that urgent steps must be taken to reverse current unsustainable trends, leading to high expectations for governments to commit to ambitious pledges that leave no one behind.

Montenegro is a country with low per capita emissions - with 1,8 t of CO2 as compared to a world’s average of 4.8 tonnes per person in 2018. Nevertheless, Montenegro is taking significant steps to advance action on climate change, to promote green growth and strong economic recovery.

The country is among the first in the Balkans to step up its commitment to reduce emissions and accelerate the benefits of clean energy, clean technology, and clean growth. Its sectors of energy, industry and product use have a pivotal role in achieving economy-wide GHG reductions, as it heavily relies on carbon sinks in forests to achieve its target.

Some highlights from the new pledge include:

  • Increased climate ambition as the country pledges to cut GHG emissions by 35% against the 1990 level in comparison to the 30% set out in the INDC;
  • A total of 18 mitigation measures, 14 of which are proposed in the energy sector, as the highest contributor to GHG emissions in Montenegro;
  • Firm commitment to investments in renewable energy production and energy efficiency in public and private buildings/households;
  • A basis for the introduction of carbon pricing through the introduction of a cap and trade scheme for major CO2 emitters (industrial and energy plants);
  • The funds raised from the scheme will be transferred into the Environmental Protection Fund and used for environmental protection measures, support for renewables and innovation;
  • A commitment to sustainable management as having an abundance of biodiversity, waters and forests Montenegro advocates reduced consumption of natural resources;
  • Efforts to build climate resilience by promoting climate innovations and increasing public support for climate solutions;
  • Mitigation measures which are gender mainstreamed, based on gender-sensitive indicators and make an integral part of all policies and actions at all levels.

"Montenegro's NDC is fair and ambitious", according to Danilo Mrdak, State Secretary at the Ministry of Ecology, Spatial Planning and Urbanism. ‘It aims to further reduce national greenhouse gas emissions while meeting the country's needs for economic development, thus enabling a feasible move towards long-term decarbonization. Montenegro will further strive to reach climate neutrality and as a candidate country for EU membership, it will make further efforts through next revision cycles to align with the European climate and energy policy framework,’’ said State Secretary.

"A more ambitious NDC and strengthened climate plan put us on track to meet 2030 emissions goal", said Daniela Gasparikova, UNDP Resident Representative to Montenegro. "The courage and responsibility we showed during the COVID-19 pandemic must accompany us during the climate crisis. Montenegro has set a new goal to reduce GHG emissions but this does not prevent the country from reviewing its contributions before the end of the regular five-year cycle and be even more ambitious in planning and creating measures, with our teams ready to provide support", Gasparikova concluded.

UNDP supported Montenegro’s bold climate pledge through NDC revision and establishing a transparency framework for monitoring and reporting progress, also assisting the country to manage and deliver policies and programs to reach its national and international climate goals and commitments through a synergetic approach to adaptation & mitigation.

Montenegro’s enhanced NDC is in line with EU Green Deal’s objective for the continent to become climate neutral by 2050. The Deal, which is designed to be transformational not only for the member countries but for EU partners - candidate countries like Montenegro as well -  should result in a cleaner environment, more affordable energy, smarter transportation, creation of new green jobs and a better quality of life.

Click here to read Montenegro’s NDC in full.

For editor’s information:

UNDP’s Climate Promise aims to support global, transformational climate action by supporting countries to enhance their NDCs in 2021 and beyond. The initiative is delivered in 119 countries – making it the world’s largest support offer of this kind. UNDP’s Climate Promise is supported by Germany, Sweden, EU, Italy, Spain and other core contributors.

For more information on the Climate Promise, please visit