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Since Paraguay became a CCAC partner in 2014, the country has taken significant steps to reduce short-lived climate pollutants under the Coalition’s brick, heavy-duty vehicle and national planning work. These activities help Paraguay in achieving international commitments to combat climate change, as well as taking steps towards national development priorities.
A land-locked country, Paraguay is increasingly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Especially the increasing frequency of extreme weather events and global climatic variability affect agricultural and livestock activities in the country, a significant economic sector. At the same time, levels of air pollution exceed World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines and threaten the health of a population of almost 7 million people, particularly in urban centres such as Asunción.
Paraguay has set a strong political frame to combat air pollution. Law No. 5211 on Air Quality (2014) aims to protect the air and atmosphere by preventing and regulating chemical pollution and applying the principles of precaution, prevention and compensation in related political decision-making. Paraguay also introduced air quality rules, which refer to the competencies of municipalities, the access to public information, and the establishment of an emergency plan. (Decree No. 1269 of 2019 and Resolution No. 259/15 of 2015) Paraguay specifically controls tropospheric ozone emissions under the air quality law, prohibiting certain polluting substances and their substitutes under Resolution No. 222/15 of 2015, which expands the list of controlled and prohibited polluting substances and their substitutes to include tropospheric ozone.
Paraguay also recognises the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, considering that their sources overlap with those of major air pollutants. Since 2020, Paraguay receives support from the CCAC to support this integrated approach on air pollution and climate change mitigation. The aim of this national planning work is to conduct an integrated inventory of short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs). With a national consultant, the project work plan is being set up, while key national stakeholders are being engaged. An integrated analysis of SLCPs and greenhouse gasses is currently being developed. These objectives support the implementation of the country’s updated NDC of July 2021, which re-establishes Paraguay’s commitment outlined in its first NDC to reduce 10% of national GHG emissions unconditional of further international support and 20% conditional upon support by 2030 relative to projected emissions under a business-as-usual scenario. Supporting these efforts, Paraguay has also ratified the Kigali Amendment in November 2018, committing to a phase-out of HFCs.
Apart from these commitments in international fora, Paraguay also developed climate change plans at the national level. With the National Law on Climate Change No. 5875 (2017), Paraguay established the normative framework for climate change mitigation and adaptation in line with the Paris Agreement and the National Development Plan. It particularly highlights the implementation of actions that reduce climate change vulnerability as well as actions to reduce greenhouse gasses. The law builds on the National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy – National Climate Change Plan of 2015 which aims to increase the national response capacity to climate change and to reduce vulnerability by integrating adaptation into development planning risk management and by controlling foreseeable impacts. The plan includes a concrete implementation plan, which was also submitted, to UNFCCC in 2017.
Especially in the energy sector, Paraguay is taking strong steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, mainly aiming to substitute fossil fuels. Decree 6092/2016 of 2016, Energy Policy of the Republic of Paraguay, for example implements the strategic vision of Paraguay’s energy policy to respond to the energy needs of the population and industry while respecting socio-environmental and efficiency criteria. The main objectives include the use of hydropower, biomass and other renewable resources. This also links to Law 2748/05 on the promotion of biofuels (2005), which intends to promote the uptake of biofuels consumption and production. It proposes tax incentives for the engagement of individuals and larger entities in biofuel production, focussing mainly on biodiesel as well as absolute and hydrated bioethanol.
Paraguay also recognises the need to adapt its agriculture sector to the challenges of climate change. The National Plan for Disaster Risk Management and Adaptation to Climate Change in the Agricultural Sector 2016 – 2022 of 2016 for example seeks to build capacity for climate change adaptation and for reacting to natural disasters. The objective is therefore to reduce vulnerability by strengthening the institutionalisation of risk management, improving information mechanisms and monitoring of agro-climatic risk.
Read below to find out more about Paraguay’s actions for combatting climate change and air pollution:
Declaración emitida por el Congreso Nacional Comisión Nacional de Defensa de los Recursos Naturales de Paraguay por la cual se declara de interés nacional la formalización del sector ladrillero...