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SA Updating Nationally Determined Contribution for Paris Agreement

March 25, 2021

Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries

South Africa is in the process of updating its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) in terms of the Paris Agreement.

The environment, forestry and fisheries minister, Barbara Creecy, highlighted this at the Indalo Inclusive South Africa Symposium.

The minister added that the NDC will be submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change before COP 26, to be held in Glasgow in November 2021.

The Paris Agreement is a legally binding international treaty on climate change.

It was adopted by 196 Parties at COP 21 in Paris on 12 December 2015 and entered into force on 4 November 2016.

Its goal is to limit global warming to well below 2, preferably to 1.5 degrees Celsius, compared to pre-industrial levels.

The minister also confirmed that the Draft Climate Change Bill will be tabled in parliament by the middle of 2021.

The draft bill was published for comment in 2019.

The draft bill seeks to:

• build the Republic’s effective climate change response and the long term, just transition to a climate resilient and lower carbon economy and society in the context of an environmentally sustainable development framework; and
• provide for matters connected therewith.

The minister emphasized that “what we now need is a better and more mainstreamed understanding of the climate transition risk our historical growth trajectory poses to the long term sustainability of our economy and society”.

Mention was made of the Presidential Climate Change Commission that met for the first time in February 2021.

“This Commission decided to advise government on how to develop a clear plan to take us from an aspirational commitment to a low carbon, climate resilient economy and society to the reality of new technology, new investment, and above all new jobs,” said the minister.

The minister pointed out that Eskom will shortly release a call for proposals to repower and repurpose Komati power station in Mpumalanga and studies to facilitate similar initiatives for Hendrina, Grootvlei and Camden are underway.

Meanwhile, in Government Gazette 44307, the environment, forestry and fisheries department republished the notice of intention to declare the remaining extent of Erf 4492 Swellendam as part of the Bontebok National Park.

Comment is invited within 60 days of the date of publication.