Super Pollutants in Nationally Determined Contributions

Supporting national action to reach the Paris Agreement target to limit global warming to 1.5°C

The Climate and Clean Air Coalition encourages countries to include short-lived climate pollutant actions in their updated Nationally Determined Contributions as a way to expand their actions toward achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement.  

Pairing action on air pollution and climate change by mitigating short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) helps heighten national climate ambition by slowing near-term temperature rise while also delivering immediate gains for public health, food security, and economic development.   

Solutions to reduce SLCPs can be easily integrated into existing national plans and strategies, as they are inexpensive and readily available. Because they generate benefits across multiple sectors, these solutions help maximise resource use and foster cooperation between government ministries. 

What is an NDC? 

A Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) is a national climate action plan to cut emissions and adapt to climate impacts. Each Party to the Paris Agreement is required to establish an NDC and update it every five years. Updated NDCs are expected to increase ambition through steeper emissions cuts and more expansive adaptation measures.   

 

The 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference, which established the Paris Agreement.

Opportunities for Increasing Ambition of NDCs Through Integrated Air Pollution and Climate Change Planning: Progress & Looking Ahead to 2025
 

As we look towards 2025, and the next round of NDCs, the opportunities are clear. Countries must enhance their climate ambition. By identifying, prioritising and including mitigation measures that reduce SLCPs and improve air quality in their NDCs, countries can slow the pace of the climate crisis while simultaneously maximising co-benefits to health, food security and economic development.  

In 2019, the Climate and Clean Air Coalition produced a practical framework to help develop an integrated climate change and air pollution mitigation analysis to assess the effects of different policies. This brief shows that while there has been substantial progress in enhancing NDCs through the inclusion of SLCPs since 2016, there is still room for growth.

Download our NDC Progress Brief.
Download our NDC Guidance for more information.
 


Discover which countries include short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) in their NDCs with the map below.

Our NDC support

Through our project funding, the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC) supports countries’ efforts to assess their SLCP emissions and address them through strategies and regulations. 

These assessments provide the evidence needed to include SLCPs measures in NDCs and build capacity within governments to mobilise resources for action.  

We have produced a practical framework to help develop an integrated climate change and air pollution mitigation analysis to assess the effects of different policies. Applying this framework can provide the basis for enhancing your NDC with the SLCP actions being taken in your country. The guidance also provides information to help increase the clarity, transparency and understanding of your climate change pledges.  Click here to access the framework.

Mongolia has identified the potential air pollution mitigation benefits that can be achieved with enhanced commitments in their revised NDCs.

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Dominican Republic has created emissions inventories and potential future mitigation scenarios to generate a recommendation report for the country's NDC revision process. 

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Colombia’s has included a 40% reduction target for black carbon by 2030 in its revised NDC. The target was informed by the National SLCP Strategy developed with the CCAC. 

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Benin has received CCAC support to include measures from its National Report on Short-Lived Climate Pollutants into its revised NDCs. 

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The Maldives has integrated existing sectoral plans with its NDC targets to create a comprehensive National Action Plan on Air Pollutants.

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Nigeria is working to implement its National SLCP Plan and integrate SLCPs into relevant planning processes, including the revised NDC.

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Examples of sectoral commitments

The number of Nationally Determined Contributions that explicitly mention short-lived climate pollutants and air pollution in 2022 was more than double that in the previous round of submissions. Methane was included in 90% of submissions and hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in 50%. Black carbon, which is not a greenhouse gas, but is a strong climate-forcing particle and air pollutant, was included in fourteen.

Countries have included targets and mitigation measures across the main emitting sectors.

   
Agriculture

  • Kenya: Implementing climate smart agriculture in line with the Kenya CSA Strategy with emphasis on efficient livestock management systems. 
  • Mongolia: Regulating and reducing the livestock number; improving livestock manure management. 
  • Vietnam: Applying management and technology solutions in cultivation and husbandry; improving diets for animals; shifting crop production structures; changing land-use methods; applying technology to treat and reuse by-products and waste in agriculture and livestock production; developing organic agriculture. 

   
Bricks

  • Rwanda: Phasing out use of clamp kilns; applying energy efficiency measures in the brick manufacturing industry. 
  • Bangladesh: Implementing energy-efficient brick kilns. 

   
Cooling

  • United States of America: Implementing the American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act to phase down the use of hydrofluorocarbons. 
  • Bosnia – Herzegovina: Increasing the efficiency of heating and cooling systems; implementing energy efficiency labeling; banning imports of used heating and cooling equipment. 
  • Cambodia: Implementing climate-friendly cooling of public sector buildings; implementing their National Cooling Action Plan; enhancing the minimum energy performance standards and beginning an F-gas transition for room air conditioners and residential refrigerators targeting the new & existing equipment stock in the country. 

   
Fossil fuels

  • United States of America: Updating standards and investing in plugging leaks from wells and mines across the natural gas distribution infrastructure. 

   
Household Energy

  • Bangladesh: Generating a new National Action Plan for Clean Cooking in Bangladesh (2020-2030). 
  • Rwanda: Disseminating modern efficient cook stoves to 80% of the rural population and 50% of the urban population by 2030; achieving a more sustainable balance between supply and demand of biomass; reducing firewood and fossil energy consumption for cooking. 

   
Transport

  • Bangladesh: Enhancing railway transport networks; enhancing fuel quality; introducing Euro III and IV vehicle standards. 
  • Mongolia: Introducing Euro-5 standard fuels; switching coal export transportation from vehicles to rail transport; switching the heating of passenger trains to electric heating. 
  • Maldives: Establishing vehicle and vessel emissions standards; establishing an efficient transport management system; promoting hybrid vehicles. 

   
Waste

  • Bangladesh: Establishing bio-gas plants to reduce landfill emissions. 
  • Cambodia: Establishing new sanitary landfills with landfill gas extraction; composting biodegradable organics from MSW, supplemented with separating organic waste at the source. 

Modeling tools

Modeling tools are used to both identify potential sources for emission reductions and quantify the ensuing benefits of mitigation measures.  

Resources

The CCAC and its partners disseminate resources that highlight sector-specific best practices and provide guidance on how to increase the ambition of NDCs.  

Agriculture

Bricks

Cooling

Fossil fuels

Transport

Waste

National Planning