Law no 1931 establishing guidelines for the management of climate change ( 2018 )

This law establishes the guidelines for the management of climate change in the decisions of public and private persons, the concurrence of the Nation, Departments, Municipalities, Districts, Metropolitan Areas and Environmental Authorities mainly in the actions of adaptation to climate change, as well as as in mitigation of greenhouse gases, with the aim of reducing…read more

Law 1819/2016 on tax deductions for renewables and carbon tax ( 2016 )

Article 235-2 of the law deals with tax exemptions from January 10th, 2018, onward. Legal exceptions referred to in article 26 of the Tax Statute include (paragraph 7) the sale of electric power generated based on wind energy, biomass or agricultural waste, solar, geothermal or seas, according to the definitions of Law 1715 of 2014…read more

Law 1715/2014, regulating the integration and promotion of non-conventional renewable energy (FNCER) ( 2014 )

The Law 1715/2014 aims to promote the development and use of non-conventional energy sources, mainly renewable energy sources, in the national energy system, by integrating them into the electricity market and in other energy uses. The Law seeks to promote efficient energy management, which comprises both energy efficiency and demand response. The Law establishes the…read more

Law 1523, adopting the National Policy of Risk Management and the National System of Risk Management ( 2012 )

The Law regulates the creation of the National Policy of Risk Management with the objective of identifying, monitoring and analysing risks, preparing measures to address situations of emergency. Other measures include financial instruments and a comprehensive communication system. The Law also establishes the National Risk Management System responsible for integrating various stakeholders (public and private…read more

Law 1450, establishing the National Development Plan 2010–2014 ( 2011 )

The Law addresses environmental sustainability and risk prevention as one of the bases of the plan. It further orders there to be territorial and sectoral adaptation plans. It foresees the implementation of a National Climate Change Policy and the design of a National Climate Change System. The law also call for the identification and prioritisation…read more

Law 788/2002, establishing the Tax Reform ( 2002 )

The comprehensive tax reform introduces several provisions in support of the development of renewable sources of energy. The sale of electricity from wind energy, biomass or agricultural waste is to be exempted from income tax for 15 years, as long as the following criteria are satisfied: participation in CO2 permit trading in accordance with the…read more

Law 697 promoting the Rational and Efficient use of Energy and the Use of other Non-Conventional Energy Sources ( 2001 )

This Law declares the Rational and Efficient Use of Energy and the Use of other Non-Conventional Energy Sources as a public interest issue and as a national priority to ensure energy supply, competitiveness and environmental protection. The State is mandated to establish the legal, technical, economic and financial framework needed for the development and application…read more

Comprehensive management plan for climate change in the energy mining sector ( 2018 )

This Plan was adopted by the ministerial Resolution no 4 0807. The Plan aims at reducing vulnerability to climate change and promoting low carbon development at sector level, strengthening and protecting the sustainability and competitiveness of the industry. The Plan seeks in particular at reducing GHG emissions in the sector, and sets specific targets in that direction,…read more

Green Growth Policy ( 2018 )

This policy document seeks to enable Colombia to benefit from the supply of natural capital for the production of environmental goods and services to generate a green, low-carbon growth. It establishes that in order to maintain and increase the rate of economic growth that the country needs, and thus address social problems, in terms of…read more

Decrees 1625/2016 and 926/2017 on carbon tax ( 2016 )

Decree 1625/2016 added part nine of law 1819/2016 (articles 221 to 223) to institute a national carbon tax. Decree 926/2017 amended the law articles.…read more

National Climate Change Decree (SISCLIMA) ( 2016 )

The Decree of the National Climate Change (SISCLIMA), aims to “coordinate, articulate, formulate, monitor and evaluate policies, rules, strategies, plans, programs, projects, actions and measures related to the adaptation to climate change and mitigation of greenhouse gases” through collaboration between public, private and nonprofit entities (Art 1). The Decree creates the Intersectional Commission on Climate Change, to…read more

Resolution no. 41286 (2016) adopting the 2017-2022 Indicative Action Plan of the Rational and Efficient Energy Use Programme (PROURE) ( 2016 )

The Indicative Action Plan defines objectives and targets for energy efficiency, actions and sectoral measures and strategies for the achievement of goals and other provisions for the period 2017-2022. It replaces the Indicative Action Plan 2010 to 2015. The Plan raises the global energy efficiency target to 2022, reaching 9.05%, and contemplates relevant actions in…read more

Colombia’s National Energy Plan: Energy Principles 2050 ( 2015 )

The National Energy Plan (PEN) was prepared by the Ministry of Mines and Energy and the Unit of Energy Mining Planning (UPME) in order to structure and implement a national energy policy. It replaces the National Energy Plan 2006-2025. The PEN has five specific objectives and two transversal ones. The specific ones are oriented to…read more

Decree 1073/2015 issuing the Regulatory Decree of the Mining and Energy Administrative Sector and Decree 0570/2018 on electricity generation ( 2015 )

This decree promotes energy production from renewable sources. Resolution 1407 of December 12, 2017, details its application. The decree 0570 of March 2018 details the applicability of the decree 1073/2015 on the long term contracting of electric power generation projects and other provisions.…read more

Colombian Low-Carbon Development Strategy ( 2012 )

The Colombian Low-Carbon Development Strategy (ECDBC) was launched in February 2012 as a tool to deliver the objectives of the National Development Plan 2011–2014 and the CONPES Document on Climate Change by promoting efficient low-carbon growth. It foresees the identification of a GHG emissions baseline and the formulation and implementation of low-carbon development plans for…read more

National Plan for Climate Change Adaptation ( 2012 / Adaptation Framework )

The National Plan for Climate Change Adaptation’s objectives are to increase knowledge of the potential risks and opportunities associated with climate change and climate variability, to incorporate climate risk management in territorial and sectoral planning and to mitigate the climate change vulnerability of ecological and socio-economic systems. It promotes a planned, territorial environmental development compatible…read more

Document CONPES 3700 on the Institutional Strategy for the Articulation of Policies and Actions in Climate Change ( 2011 )

The main objective of CONPES 3700 is to outline a mechanism for institutional co-ordination to incorporate climate change into sectorial and territorial decision making, the National Climate Change System (SISCLIMA). CONPES 3700 recommended the creation of SISCLIMA as the official national institution to coordinate and propel climate change actions. Within these actions, SISCLIMA will co-ordinate…read more

Economy-wide

NDC Laws and National Policies

20% (unconditional) to 30% (conditional) reduction in GHG emissions by 2030 compared to the BAU scenario

Economy Wide | Baseline Scenario Target | Target year: 2025 | Base year: business as usual scenario

Source: NDC

There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Energy

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.

Reduction of 11.2 MTCO2 Eq in the energy mining sector by 2030 against a 2010 baseline

Energy Intensity | Base Year Target | Target year: 2030 | Base year: 2010 | Source(s): Comprehens... (2018 / Executive)

Overall 9.05%, or 699,678 TJ improvement in energy efficiency by 2022 against a 2017 baseline

Energy Efficiency | Base Year Target | Target year: 2022 | Base year: 2017 | Source(s): Resolution... (2016 / Executive)

0.73% improvement in energy efficiency by 2022 against a 2017 baseline

Energy Efficiency | Base Year Target | Target year: 2022 | Base year: 2017 | Source(s): Resolution... (2016 / Executive)

1.13% improvement in energy efficiency by 2022 against a 2017 baseline

Energy Efficiency | Base Year Target | Target year: 2022 | Base year: 2017 | Source(s): Resolution... (2016 / Executive)

1.71% improvement in energy efficiency by 2022 against a 2017 baseline

Energy Efficiency | Base Year Target | Target year: 2022 | Base year: 2017 | Source(s): Resolution... (2016 / Executive)

Transportation

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.

5.45% improvement in energy efficiency by 2022 against a 2017 baseline

Energy Efficiency | Base Year Target | Target year: 2022 | Base year: 2017 | Source(s): Resolution... (2016 / Executive)

Agriculture

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Buildings

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Coastal Zones

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Cross-Cutting Area

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Disaster Risk Management (DRM)

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Environment

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Health

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Industry

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

LULUCF

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Social Development

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Tourism

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Urban

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Waste

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Water

NDC Laws and National Policies
There are no quantifiable targets found in the NDC.There are no quantifiable targets found in the laws and policies.

Colombia adopted the UNFCCC in 1994 and approved the Kyoto Protocol in 2000. The second National Communication, submitted to the UNFCCC in 2010, presented the national inventory of GHGs for 2000 and 2004. The sectors that caused most GHGs in 2004 were: land-use change and forestry (LULUCF) 14.5%; agriculture 38%; energy 37%; solid waste 6%; and industrial processes 5%. When the total emissions of agriculture are added to those of LULUCF, activities within this sector account for around 80% of total emissions in 2000 and 2004.

One of the first policies addressing climate change was the Guidelines for Climate Change Policy, issued in 2002 by the then Ministry of Environment, Housing and Territorial Development and the National Planning Department (NPD). These guidelines described the implications of climate change and presented strategies that the country should follow in order to comply with the international obligations derived from the UNFCCC. In the same year the Colombian Office for Climate Change Mitigation was set up as the body in charge of promoting CDM projects.

Recent climate policy has been defined by the National Economic and Social Policy Council (CONPES). CONPES is responsible for developing the climate change components of the National Development Plans into policy documents. CONPES 3700, of 2011, defined the need of an institutional framework for climate change. It also established the National System of Climate Change (SISCLIMA) as the institution in charge of co-ordinating and promoting climate change action and policy. Since the document was drafted, the Government has been preparing a Presidential Decree by which the System will be formally created. Once this process is finalised, SISCLIMA will co-ordinate the implementation of the four climate change priority strategies defined by the government: the Climate Change National Adaptation Plan (CCNAP); the Colombian Low Carbon Development Strategy (CLCDS); the National REDD+ Strategy (ENREDD+); and the Strategy for Fiscal Protection Against Natural Disasters.

Although SISCLIMA has not yet been officially formalised, the members of its financial council have been meeting regularly since 2013 in order to identify the challenges and opportunities in climate change project financing. The National Planning Department, as the Secretariat, with support from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has been leading this process and inviting institutions to become members.

Colombia has been successful in leveraging funds under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and the government has tried to establish a system of payment for environmental services for climate change mitigation through the CDM. The 1995 National Biodiversity Policy introduced the concept of environmental services and biodiversity risk owing to climate change. In 2011 a new biodiversity policy was formulated to comply with recent international commitments and new climate change adaptation policy. In 2003, CONPES introduced the national strategy of payment for environmental services (PES) for climate change mitigation through the CDM.

The Colombian Low-Carbon Development Strategy was launched in 2012 as a tool to deliver the objectives of the National Development Plan 2011–2014 and the CONPES Document on Climate Change by promoting efficient low-carbon growth. It foresees the identification of a GHG emissions baseline and the formulation and implementation of low-carbon development plans (Mitigation Action Plans) for energy, hydrocarbons, mining, agriculture, transportation, industry, waste and housing. On the basis of these results, appropriate policies, NAMAs and projects are being implemented. With the support of the EU, the UK and the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, UNDP will contribute to the implementation of the strategy by providing information for the development of emissions baselines and cost-effective sectoral action plans and public policies. It will also strengthen the capacity of ministries to integrate low-carbon aspects into their activities. In addition, USAID will continue supporting the Colombian Low-Carbon Development Strategy with institutional strengthening through experts serving as focal point in the ministries.

Following the recent presidential election, a new National Development Plan for 2014-2018 is being prepared, with peace, social equality and education set as the new national priorities. Climate change is expected to be present in this plan, allowing for a move away from the design of strategies and plans towards implementation and mainstreaming of climate change action.

Energy supply

Colombia’s power sector relies heavily on installed, large capacity hydropower units. The installed power mix is 64% hydro, 31% natural gas and coal, and 5% other sources and cogeneration. This structure results in a low carbon footprint, among the lowest in the region.

The Ministry of Mines and Energy is playing an active role in establishing renewable energy policies. Aiming to diversify the national energy system, the government is promoting the use of ‘non-conventional renewable energy sources’ (FNCER). Regulatory agencies are defining and creating regulations for the integration of FNCER regulations. FNCER, as outlined in the law, are “energy sources available worldwide that are environmentally sustainable, but in the country are not used, or are used marginally and not widely commercialised”.

The law details measures that the government will take to foster the development of energy generated from forestry and agricultural biomass, and solid waste; reforestation activities; and solar, wave, wind, small hydroelectric and geothermal energy. The Law establishes the legal framework and identifies the instruments to promote the use of non-conventional energy sources, particularly renewable sources, and to foster investment and research in, as well as development of clean technologies. The law points to courses of action Colombia may take to comply with international commitments it has undertaken in the areas of renewable energy, efficient energy management and GHG emission reductions, as contemplated under the Colombian law that adopts the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) statute.

In the Cancun Agreements, Colombia committed to no less than 77% of the total installed capacity of electrical energy generation coming from renewable sources by 2020. It also committed to promote production growth of biofuels such as ethanol and biodiesel – without threatening forest ecosystems and food security – by strengthening national market participation and by ensuring a minimum mandatory 20% biofuel mixture of total fuel volume.

Energy demand

Colombia is not one of the world’s leading energy producers, but it is a net energy exporter. Demand for energy has been increasing over the past decade and is expected to grow at an average of about 3.5% per year through 2020. The difference between its energy production and consumption has been due mostly to oil and large coal exports. The country is a modest energy user and CO2 emitter. The power sector already has a very low carbon footprint.

In past years Colombia has achieved significant advances in energy demand, recognising the need to increase energy efficiency especially in the power, industrial, residential and transport sectors. The Programme for the Rational and Efficient Use of Energy and Other Non-Conventional Energy Forms (PROURE) promotes the rational and efficient use of energy and alternative energy sources. There is also a law to promote efficient energy management, prescribing actions in both energy efficiency and demand-response. It also seeks to establish a Fund for Clean Energy and Energy Efficiency (FENOGE) to finance renewable energy projects such as building small-scale self-generation and promoting practices for best efficiency.

Based on PROURE, industrial sector has the following sub-programmes: optimisation of electricity use for the driving force; optimisation of boiler use; efficiency in illumination; energy management in the industry with an emphasis on cleaner production; cogeneration and auto-generation; rational use and energy efficiency in small and medium enterprises (SMEs); optimisation of combustion process; and optimisation of the cold chain. For 2015 the energy saving goals for industrial sector are: electricity 3.43% and other energy sources 0.25%. For commercial and service sectors, the PROURE programme determined programmes on diffusion, promotion and application of technologies and good practices in illumination systems, refrigeration and air-conditioning; design, construction, energy reconversion, and efficient and sustainable use of building; characterisation, indicator management and technical assistance; and updating or technological conversion of public lighting.

The UNDP is supporting a project (2011-2016) to accelerate the adoption and implementation of energy efficiency standards and labels throughout the Andean region. It will also facilitate harmonisation of test procedures, standards and labels among participating countries. The project aims to reduce total residential and commercial final energy consumption by an average of 5%, resulting in a similar reduction of carbon emissions by the year 2030 and ensuring more environmentally sustainable and economically efficient development.

REDD+ and LULUCF

Colombia is one of the world’s megadiverse countries, hosting close to 14% of the planet’s biodiversity. In 2008 it signed up to the “zero deforestation in the Amazon by 2020” pledge and began working on REDD+ in 2009. Since then, Colombia has been active in the UNFCCC REDD+ negotiations where it supports market-based mechanisms and has been a proponent of the idea that REDD+ should accommodate a sub-national approach. It became a member of the advisory committee of the Jurisdictional and Nested Requirements (JNR) working group of the Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS), of the World Bank Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF), and since 2013 has been a partner country of the UN-REDD+.

Colombia’s Readiness Plan Idea Note (R-PIN) was accepted by the FCPF in 2008 and USD200,000 disbursed to help it prepare its Readiness Preparation Proposal (R-PP). In 2011, the FCPF Participants Committee and Technical Assessment Panel approved its fifth R-PP, authorising a grant of a further USD3.4m for readiness preparation. Colombia subsequently adapted its R-PP using the harmonised FCPF/UN-REDD framework.

With the support of GIZ, the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development (MADS) is working on the draft and implementing its national REDD+ strategy. In the meantime, Colombia is taking a staggered approach to REDD+ readiness, prioritising the Amazon and Pacific regions, which together account for 75% of Colombia’s forest. There are more than 50 REDD+ initiatives, one of which (the Chocó-Darien Conservation Corridor) is already producing credits in the voluntary market. In the Cancun Agreements, Colombia committed to reduce Amazon deforestation to zero by 2020.

Adaptation

Climate risk prevention has become increasingly important. This has been strongly influenced by the impacts of La Niña, a hydro-climatic event that in 2010-2011 affected more than 3.2m people and was responsible for considerable asset losses. This catastrophe highlighted the impact climate change events could inflict on the country and their threat to the achievement of economic growth and competitiveness objectives.

The most recent climate risk assessment took place in 2010 under the Second National Communication on Climate Change. During 2015 a new assessment will be performed as part of the Third National Communication on Climate Change. However some regions and sectors have undertaken vulnerability analysis to identify the most vulnerable areas and prioritise adaptation measures. Colombia has made progress in formulating climate change adaptation plans at a regional and at a sectorial level.

The current National Development Plan (2010-2014) includes elements of sustainable economic growth, environmental sustainability and risk prevention. It identifies conflicting sectors such as mining, agriculture, housing and infrastructure, and it links climate change adaptation to development goals.

The National Plan for Climate Change Adaptation (PNACC) was launched in 2012. Its objectives are to increase knowledge of the potential risks and opportunities associated with climate change and climate variability, to incorporate climate risk management in territorial and sectoral planning and to mitigate the climate change vulnerability of ecological and socio-economic systems. This is an initiative led by the National Planning Department, with the support of the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development, the Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environmental Studies, and the National Disaster Risk Management Unit, with the participation of the productive sectors and the territorial stakeholders. The Plan will set the conceptual bases and methodologies for each sector and territory to identify their risk, prioritise actions and formulate their own sectoral or territorial adaptation plan. Five documents have been written under the PNACC: the Adaptation Conceptual Bases (ABC), the Roadmap for the formulation of territorial and sectoral plans, Guidelines for Community based Adaptation, Guidelines for mainstreaming climate change into land planning instruments (currently under elaboration), and the Roadmap to incorporate climate change into environmental licences (currently under revision).

In addition, sectoral adaptation plans and strategies are being developed, such as the “Agricultural Sector Climate Phenomena Adaptation Strategy”; the “Study to determine Climate Change Vulnerability and Adaptation options for Colombia´s (hydroelectric) Energy Sector”; and the “Long-term Climate Change Vision for Sustainable Transport and Infrastructure” and “National Road Network Climate Change Adaptation Plan”.

Future Generations v. Ministry of the Environment and Others (Opened in 2018 )

Citation/reference number: 11001 22 03 000 2018 00319 00
Jurisdiction: Colombia
Core objective(s): Youth plaintiffs seek to enforce fundamental rights to a healthy environment which they claim are threatened by climate change and deforestation.
Current status: closed

According to a press release and copy of the complaint obtained from the organization Dejusticia, 25 youth plaintiffs between the ages of 7 and 26 years old have sued several bodies within the Colombian government, Colombian municipalities, and a number of corporations to enforce their claimed rights to a healthy environment, life, health, food, and…read more

Decision C-035/16 of February 8, 2016 (Opened in 2016 )

Citation/reference number: Decision C-035/16 of February 8, 2016
Jurisdiction: Colombia
Core objective(s): Constitutionality of statutory provisions grandfathering agricultural, mining, and oil and gas development activities in sensitive, high-altitude ecosystems
Current status: Decided

Colombia’s Constitutional Court struck down provisions of Law No. 1450 of 2011 and of Law No. 1753 of 2015 that threatened high-altitude ecosystems, called paramos. The court noted several important features of paramos, including their fragility, their lack of regulatory protection, their role in providing Colombia with as much as 70 percent of its drinking…read more

A Request for an Advisory Opinion from the Inter-American Court of Human Rights Concerning the Interpretation of Article 1(1), 4(1) and 5(1) of the American Convention on Human Rights (Opened in )

Citation/reference number: OC-23/17
Jurisdiction: Inter-American Court on Human Rights
Core objective(s): In an advisory opinion, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights recognized the right to a healthy environment as a human right
Current status: closed

The Inter-American Court of Human Rights issued an advisory opinion finding that the right to a healthy environment is a human right. The opinion noted that the adverse effects of environmental degradation and climate change both affect human rights. This finding suggests that the right to a healthy environment may serve as a pathway for…read more

The Republic of Colombia is a unitary republic, governed by representatives of the people, who are elected through direct vote. The three branches of governmental power are the executive, the legislative, and the judiciary. The 1991 Constitution is the source and origin of all laws and it overrides them all. The legislative power is vested in a bicameral Congress composed of a Senate, with 102 members, and a House of Representatives with 163 members. Senators and Representatives are elected to four year-terms and may be re-elected for indefinite terms. The last elections for Congress took place in March 2014, and the next election will be in 2018.

Bills are usually submitted to the Secretariat of either chamber of Congress. The bill is first published in the Congressional Gazette and then assigned to one of seven standing committees by subject matter. The president of each committee assigns one or more members to act as bill sponsors and present a report to the committee (also published in the Congressional Gazette).The bill is then debated, amended, voted on and, if approved, submitted to the plenary of each chamber. The bill is assigned one or more sponsors in the plenary session where again it will be debated. The chamber may decide to send the bill back to the committee whenever its text becomes significantly different from the one originally submitted. Once the bill is approved by one chamber, it will undergo the same process in other chamber. The standing committees of each chamber may be called upon by the President of the Republic to debate a bill jointly for reasons of urgency.

Once approved by Congress, the bill is submitted to the President who may object to it for reasons of convenience or constitutionality. Objections by reasons of constitutionality are submitted to the Constitutional Court. If both chambers, by simple majority votes, override the President’s objections for reasons of convenience, or if the Court dismisses objections for reasons of constitutionality, the President is required to sanction and enact the bill as law.  Promulgation of a law takes place by its publication in the Official Gazette and its entry into force takes place at that time or on the date indicated in the statute.

The structure of Government and the supreme set of norms are provided by the Constitution. Congress in turn approves laws with varying hierarchy that in all cases must be consistent with the Constitution. Most statutes are ordinary laws. International treaties duly ratified by Congress also have the status of law. The Constitution grants the President regulatory power to issue decrees, resolutions, directives and orders that must conform to existing laws. Decrees and Resolutions are usually issued and enforced by the government ministries and agencies.

Last modified 25 July, 2018