Published by
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) / United Nations Environment Programme/ Danmarks Tekniske Universitet (DTU) Partnership

How are INDCs and NAMAs linked?

Many developing countries are currently preparing and implementing Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs) as part of their national efforts to address climate change. NAMAs are mitigation actions taken in the context of sustainable development which are measurable, reportable and verifiable (MRV). They can be supported through financial resources, technology transfer and capacity building from the international community. When NAMAs were first introduced at the COP13 in Bali in 2007, the Parties’ aim was to increase mitigation activities in developing (non-Annex I) countries. The Cancun Agreement (decided at COP16 in Cancun) also encouraged the Parties to develop low emission development strategies (LEDS) to identify sustainable pathways for decoupling sustainable economic growth from GHG emissions. Today, LEDS are no longer explicitly mentioned in UNFCCC decisions, but countries still refer to their overall low-carbon, long-term pathways development trajectories as LEDS, and they therefore continue to play a role. The authors hence perceive LEDS as still relevant due to their long-term nature and strategic importance in defining countryspecific mitigation options embedded in sustainable development trajectories and decided to include them in this discussion paper.

The discussion of these concepts raises questions over the relationship between NAMAs, INDCs and LEDS and policy makers demand clarification on the concepts and their respective linkages. The objective of this discussion paper is to look at the debate on INDCs from a mitigation-perspective. It aims to discuss the framework set out above in a pre- and post-2020 context, highlighting the political, technical and institutional facts on NAMAs, INDCs and LEDS, analyse their linkages and finally conclude with a set of key messages.