Towards Paris 2015: What does a new global climate policy mean for Central Asia?

Policy Brief / Strategy Brief

Towards Paris 2015: What does a new global climate policy mean for Central Asia?



August 2015

It is known that the global climate negotiations in Lima, Peru have resulted in a new document, the Lima Call for Climate Action that sets up the framework for negotiations on a new climate treaty to be agreed at the forthcoming COP 21 UNFCCC in 2015 in Paris. Lima has given a new urgency towards fast tracking adaptation and building resilience across the developing world. The talks were evident in the progress on elevating adaptation onto the same level as the cutting of greenhouse gas emissions. This will be done through the recognition that National Adaptation Plans (NAPs) offer an important way of ensuring resilience. The nations also agreed the basic rules on how all countries can submit contributions to the new agreement during the first quarter of 2015. These Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) will form the foundation for climate action post 2020, when the new agreement would come into effect, and substitute for the Kyoto Protocol (1997) and subsequent agreements adopted in Copenhagen (2010) and Cancun (2010). The treaty in Paris is expected to introduce new mechanisms of political and institutional frameworks of the international cooperation to tackle climate change and keep a +2°C limit for the global temperature increase.

The year 2015 is supposed to be a turning point in the history of the global climate change talks, with more than 190 nations to gather in Paris and discuss a possible new global agreement on climate change. In this context, the countries of Central Asia might use a momentum and explore opportunities for joint positioning towards low-carbon development and climate-resilient future in the region.

This report aims to inform the countries of Central Asia and the international community about the key findings of the recent climate negotiations in Lima (COP 20, 2014) and expectations from the global climate treaty, which is anticipated to be adopted in December in Paris (COP 21, 2015). The report also provides an update on the status quo of the Central Asian countries on their national climate policies and joint regional vision towards a new era of global climate actions.

The report primarily draws from references and literature available at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) website (UN newsroom and COP decisions), analytical reports and working papers of international development agencies. The content of the section about Central Asia relies on the findings and discussions of the Subregional conference on climate change in Central Asia: an opportunity for joint actions towards Paris 2015, which was held on February 3-4, 2015 in Almaty, Kazakhstan.1 The report acknowledges the limitation of data and lack of official national statements and INDCs of the Central Asia countries at the time of the report’s completion.