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Analysis of the land use sector in INDCs of relevant Non-Annex I parties


  • Hargita, Yvonne
  • Rüter, Sebastian


The international community has committed itself to adopt a global climate agreement in Paris in 2015, which shall enter into force in 2020 and shall be legally-binding for all. In advance of the negotiations, parties shall submit the so-called Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC), providing the voluntary national emission reduction pledges post 2020. For the purposes of § 14 of the Lima Call for Climate Action parties may also provide information on whether and in what manner removals are taken into account. Removals are synonymous for the land use (LU) sector that can serve as a carbon sink or source, depending on the national preconditions and the sector's management. Climate negotiations in the past have shown that the accounting rules that result from the special role of the LU sector have a major impact on the accounting of emissions and removals (in the sum: net-removals), and thus on the pledged overall emission reduction targets. Since the international community has yet not been able to agree on binding accounting rules for post-2020, every party can decide on its own, how it considers net-emissions from LU in its INDC. Countries with large forest areas could significantly weaken their overall level of ambition by applying national profitable rules. With our analysis of the LU sector in relevant Non-Annex I-INDCs, we critically reflect the potential role of forests and the REDD+ mechanism for the national reduction targets. The analysis shows that the assessed parties have taken advantage of the missing common rules and designed their reduction targets in a variety of ways. This variety risks transparency, completeness and comparability of information and complicates the assessment of ambition. The remaining issues that could not be answered with the data provided confirmed the need for independent technical review of emission data and assumptions behind future emission development by UNFCCC experts. These reviews could assure that the quality of pursuing negotiations of reduction targets would not be compromised. At the present state, the inclusion of the LU sector and its impact on future reduction commitments remain a source of uncertainty.

Suggested Citation

  • Hargita, Yvonne & Rüter, Sebastian, 2016. "Analysis of the land use sector in INDCs of relevant Non-Annex I parties," Thünen Working Papers 50, Johann Heinrich von Thünen Institute, Federal Research Institute for Rural Areas, Forestry and Fisheries.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:jhtiwp:50

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    Paris Agreement; forest; land use; Brazil; India; Indonesia; UNFCCC; INDC; Non-Annex I; REDD+; 2020; 2030; Pariser Klimaabkommen; Wald; Landnutzung; Brasilien; Indien; China; Indonesien;

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