South Africa’s First Nationally Determined Contribution under the Paris Agreement

The Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, launched South Africa’s updated draft Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) for public consultation during a virtual stakeholder session. The updated draft NDC, the cornerstone of South Africa’s climate change response, was approved by Cabinet on 24 March 2021 to be released for public comment. It is South Africa’s commitment in terms of United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and its Paris Agreement (PA) to contribute to the global climate change effort. All parties to the UNFCCC are updating their NDC’s in the run-up to the 26th international climate change conference to be held in Glasgow, Scotland, in November 2021. Under the Paris Agreement all parties are required to deposit NDCs every five years. South Africa deposited its first NDC with the UNFCCC in October 2015, committing to keeping national greenhouse gas emissions within a range from 389 Mt CO2-eq for 2025 and 2050. South Africa remains committed to addressing climate change based on science, equity and sustainable development. Similarly, the present draft updated NDC seeks to balance the three structural components of mitigation, adaptation and means of implementation/support requirements.