WWF responds to Chile's updated national climate plan

Posted on April, 09 2020

"Chile’s revised national climate plan, released today, reflects both what Chile has been doing and what the planet requires from us."
9 April 2020 - Chile today became the seventh country to submit a revised national climate plan. 185 Parties submitted national climate plans (called Nationally Determined Contributions or NDCs) in 2015. The Paris Agreement indicates that updated national climate plans should be submitted in 2020.

Chile follow the Marshall Islands, Norway, Suriname, Moldova, Japan and Singapore. These six countries represent 2.8% of total global emissions.

Commenting on Chile’s newly released national climate plan, Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, leader of WWF’s global climate and energy practice said: "Chile’s revised national climate plan, released today, reflects both what Chile has been doing and what the planet requires from us. Chile is going through a political and social crisis in addition to the crisis posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Even in this difficult situation, Chile - which holds the current COP presidency - is able to tell the world that climate responsibility must remain a policy priority, with a view to ensuring well-being for citizens now and their sustainable development.

"This must be the new paradigm, even in the economic difficulties that the world is already facing: that climate action remains a non-negotiable global priority. This message must be clear to all those countries that may use the current health and economic crisis as an excuse to postpone decisions and actions on climate responsibility. One of the most promising ways to address and recover from the socio-economic difficulties of today is to invest in the zero-carbon society of the future.

"There are areas that continue to be opportunities for improvement in Chile's NDC such as advancing their emissions peak year to 2023, expanding the use of nature-based solutions from natural ecosystems as well as accounting for the increased possibilities that cities' sustainable planning and citizens' consumption patterns can deliver."

Ricardo Bosshard, director of WWF Chile, appreciates that Chile continues forward with this process, "despite the difficulties that we face as a country, and because additionally it incorporates significant improvements compared to the original NDC, several of them proposed by our organization. We know that there are still gaps to cover, but we keep advancing and hope that other countries will follow this lead."

"We believe that the country and the world cannot successfully overcome the health crisis if we do not maintain and redouble our efforts for a healthy planet, and in this context, continuing to move toward low emissions development is fundamental. It also sets a plan to guide us, once the emergency is over, in economic reactivation with sustainability as a central axis. Any other way forward limits our possibilities for solid, lasting development with solidarity and increases the risk of future social and health crises," remarked Bosshard.

To date, 34 countries have stated their intention to update their national climate plans by 2020, including the European Union), representing 9.3% of total global emissions. 107 countries, representing 15.1% of total global emissions, have stated their intention to enhance ambition or action in their revised national climate plans (Source: ClimateWatchData.org).

Countries that present their updated NDCs in 2020 should ensure they deliver increased ambition in line with what science recommends, and do so before COP26.

Photo by IISD/ENB | Kiara Worth
Chile's environment minister and COP25 president Carolina Schmidt opens the UN climate talks in Madrid, Spain.
© IISD/ENB | Kiara Worth