South Africa Plans 28% Lower 2030 Carbon Emissions Target

South Africa, the world’s 12th-biggest producer of greenhouse gases, has committed to improving its target for reducing its projected emissions of the pollutants by 28% by 2030 2025.

The environment ministry said in a presentation on Tuesday that it will, after consultation, present a revised so-called Nationally Determined Contribution, or NDC, to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. That will propose an upper limit of 510 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent by 2025, 17% down from a earlier target of 614 tons. While, the upper limit for 2030 is now 440 tons, the minimum level was unchanged at 398 tons.

“These levels represent the highest possible ambition, given our national circumstances,” the ministry said in a document outlining the plans. “In communicating its second NDC in 2025, South Africa will consider whether the level of ambition for 2030 can be increased further, given our national circumstances, technology developments, and the availability of international support.”

Key to South Africa’s success in meeting the targets and making progress beyond 2030 is reducing its reliance on coal, which is used to generate almost all of the country’s electricity. State power utility Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. plans to gradually close some of its plants and have them replaced with renewable energy.

That will take investment and a target of quadrupling the amount of finance secured to do so to $8 billion a year by 2030 has been set. Some of that money may come from the sale of green bonds by municipalities, the ministry said.

While Eskom, by far South Africa’s biggest emitter of greenhouses gases, has set a target of have net zero emissions by 2050 the updated NDC does not set a target for that date.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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