Law on the transition to green economy ( 2016 )

The purpose of the law (full name: “On introducing amendments and addenda to some legislative acts of Kazakhstan on the transition to green economy") is to improve legislation related to ecology and renewable energy. Changes are made to the Land, Water, Environment, Tax, and Enterprise Codes to introduce or strengthen sustainable practices (e.g. updated environmental and…read more

Law on Energy Saving ( 2011 )

This law establishes the legal framework to regulate markets as they relate to the consumption of energy. It explains that the government has the authority to regulate markets according to the principles of energy saving and energy efficiency. Such principles shall be disseminated to the public through national mass media. It authorises and requires local…read more

Law about Support of Use of Renewable Sources of Energy No. 165-4 ( 2009 )

This piece of legislation aims to eliminate previous legal and financial barriers to the development of renewable energy projects, thus facilitating new projects and access to regional energy grids, as well as regulating energy pricing to ensure that energy from renewable sources is cost-comparable to fossil fuels. The law was a necessary step in order…read more

The Ecological Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan, No. 212 of 2007and Amendment to said legislation on 3 December 2011 ( 2007 )

The Ecological Code is a general law that addresses a variety of environmental and climate issues. It codifies ecological definitions of terms into law, establishes the authority of the government to regulate different aspects of the natural environment, stipulates various institutional relations between governmental departments, and lays the groundwork for environmental impact studies among many…read more

Law on Power Industry, No 588-II ( 2004 )

This legislation contains broad directives about managing the country’s power resources, distribution of power and energy priorities. It establishes a list of priorities for future regulation and policy related to the power industry. Included in those priorities are the development of renewable energy sources and the rational and efficient use of current sources (thus reducing…read more

The Concept of Transition of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Sustainable Development for the Period 2007-2024, Presidential Decree No 216 of 2006 ( 2006 )

The Concept for Sustainable Development (Concept) is a comprehensive guide to planning national development over a period of nearly two decades. The Concept was developed within the framework of the World Summit on Sustainable Development (Johannesburg, 2002) by the Ministry of Environment with support from UNDP, UNEP-EU, as well as scientists and experts. This policy…read more

Government Decree No 857, on wind energy development ( 2003 )

This executive decree makes the development of wind energy a national priority, calling for the evaluation of potential wind energy generation and the implementation of the Wind Power Market Development Initiate, to take place from 2004 until 2007. The project will be carried out by the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources in coordination with…read more

Economy-wide

NDC Laws and National Policies

15% (unconditional) to 25% (conditional) reduction in GHG emissions by 2030 compared to 1990

Economy Wide | Base Year Target | Target year: 2030 | Base year: 1990

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.

50% renewable in electric power industry by 2050

Renewable Energy | Base Year Target | Target year: 2050 | Base year: 2050 | Source(s): Law on the... (2016 / Legislative)

3% wind power of total electricity production by 2020, then 10% by 2030

Renewable Energy | Trajectory Target | Target year: 2030 | Base year: 2020, 2030 | Source(s): Law on the... (2016 / Legislative)

10% cut energy intensity of GDP, then 25%, then 50% by 2015, 2020, 2050 against a 2008 baseline

Energy Intensity | Intensity Target | Target year: 2050 | Base year: 2008 | Source(s): Law on the... (2016 / Legislative)

Cut CO2 emissions in electric power industry to baseline, then 40% below  by 2020, 2050 against a 2012 baseline

Energy Efficiency | Base Year Target | Target year: 2050 | Base year: 2012 | Source(s): Law on the... (2016 / Legislative)

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.

Transportation

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.

Kazakhstan’s stated national priority is to focus on low-carbon development following the models of Denmark and Norway. This is showcased in the two-decade national strategic plan of sustainable development. An “ecological” perspective across all sectors of the economy has been adopted, and various national ministries and government programmes have incorporated climate change and sustainability into their strategic frameworks.

The majority of legislation on energy efficiency and renewable energy has been passed in the past 10 years. From 1985 to 2005, production of hydrocarbons rose 225%. GHG emissions stand to rise significantly as national exploitation of natural gas, petroleum and coal increase. Inefficient technology and practices have resulted in significant energy losses and higher GHG emissions. As the government considers the exploitation of the country’s oil, natural gas and coal reserves essential to economic development and the quality of life of its citizens, much emphasis has been placed on modernising the energy industry, maximising efficiency as well diversifying the industry through incentivising exploitation of renewable sources. Legislative action in this arena culminated in the introduction of a pilot Emissions Trading Scheme in 2013.

In 2013 the Ministry of Environment and Protection published a document titled “Transition of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Green Economy,” which identified regulatory priorities as well as legislative opportunities for green growth. The recommendations include adjusting existing laws and regulations to coincide with a “green economy”, including tax breaks and investment incentives for priority sectors. The document also points to the “Green Bridge” initiative as a means to transfer technology and best practices within the Eurasian and Central Asian regions.

Desertification is a major concern, with two thirds of the country vulnerable to it. Reduced water levels in the Aral Sea lead to the salinification of inland soils. Climate conditions lower crop yields and are predicted to worsen as a result of climate change. Reversing the degradation of land through reforestation and restoration of abandoned farmlands is a priority. Likewise, water scarcity is major concern, complicated by the geopolitics of the region, since much of Kazakhstan’s water flows from neighbouring countries. Adapting to a harsher climate and water scarcity, especially as it relates to agricultural production and to the sheep rearing industry, has been the focus of the adaptation debate.

Carbon pricing

Kazakhstan began trading carbon in 2013 for a pilot period of one year. Should the trading scheme be successful, a second trading period will be enacted to continue trading until 2020. Carbon trading on the Kazakh Emission Trading Scheme (ETS) was codified through an amendment to the Ecological Code law on 3 December 2011 and is further regulated by 17 government decrees and 14 ministerial decrees. Six sectors trade on the market: agriculture, transportation, oil and gas, mining and metallurgy, chemical industry, and the energy industry.

At the start of year one, 178 companies from these six sectors were expected to participate in the scheme, all with annual CO2 emissions estimated to exceed 20,000 tons per year. An offset scheme is also in development, with some details about which types of projects would be considered to offset carbon emissions, but incomplete details as to whether any limits would be applied to offsets claimed by operators. The ETS was developed with a close eye towards EU policies regulating carbon trading, with the aim of linking the national scheme to the larger market in the future.

Energy supply

Kazakhstan has made significant legislative progress over the past decade to diversify its energy production with renewable sources as well as through regulation to incentivise and require more efficient energy technologies on the supply side. The Law on Power Industry of 2004 established a list of policy directives for regulating the power industry, including greater efficiency and the development of renewable energy sources. In 2006, The Concept of Transition of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Sustainable Development for the Period 2007-2024 further strengthened the policy framework for energy efficiency and renewable energy by tying them to the cross-sectoral and cross-ministerial strategic plans for economic and social development. It states an objective of raising the national sustainability index to 25% by 2024, through the use of energy technology and efficiency. Parliament in 2007 incorporated global warming as an explicit reason for pursuing energy efficiency and renewable energy. A 2011 amendment established the regulatory authority to establish emissions quotas and to plan the ETS.

Energy Demand

In 2011, the Law on Energy Saving reinforced the government’s legal authority to regulate the energy markets based on principles of energy savings and efficiencies and authorised a government commission to require certain minimum standards of energy efficiency for mechanical equipment, buildings, and other energy consuming structures.

REDD+ and LULUCF

Over two thirds of the country is prone to desertification, a vulnerability that, along with water scarcity, the government has prioritised in recent years. In 2013 the government announced it would establish a National Centre to Combat Desertification, for which it hopes to attract international investments and collaboration. It has been working to combat desertification by preserving the water level of the Aral Sea, successfully reversing its shrinking and reducing the amount of salt that has been blown inland. The World Bank has financed reforestation projects for some 25,000 ha of land as well as the restoration of over 150,000 ha of either abandoned or degraded farmlands.

Adaptation

Kazakhstan’s 2005 Second National Report to the UNFCCC presents climate change scenarios and possible adaption measures. The report says the agricultural sector stands to suffer the most from changes in climate due to soil degradation, desertification, higher temperatures and decreased fresh water resources. As 50% of the water that Kazakhstan uses flows from China and other neighbouring countries, the government has repeatedly expressed concern for water security in long-term risk assessments.

Kazakhstan has incorporated adaptation measures into its long-term ecological and economic plans. The Concept of Transition of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Sustainable Development for the Period 2007-2024 incorporates many of the priorities of the Concept of Ecological Security of the Republic of Kazakhstan 2004-2015. Ministerial programmes to combat desertification, secure and preserve potable water, and sustainably develop rural lands for agricultural use may be considered adaptation programming.

The Ministry of Environment is reported to be drafting a national strategic plan specific to adaptation. No drafts had been released at time of publication.

To date, Kazakhstan does not have any litigation listed.

Legislative authority is shared between the executive (consisting of the President, Prime Minister and the Council of Ministers) and the bicameral parliament consisting of the Senate (upper house) and the Mazhilis (lower house).

The president is elected by popular vote for a five-year term. The president appoints the Prime Minister (who serves as head of government) and the Council of Ministers. Nursultan Nazarbayev has ruled as President since independence in 1991. While in office, he has passed a number of Presidential Decrees expanding executive authority.

The Senate has 47 members, 32 of whom are elected to four-year terms from local assemblies (two from each of the 14 defined regions, and the cities of Astana and Almaty); the President appoints the remaining 15. In the Mazhilis, there are 107 deputies, of whom 98 are elected from parties and 9 are elected by the People’s Assembly. Mazhilis deputies serve for five-year terms. The last election was held in March 2016, the next is expected in 2020.

The executive branch initiates most draft legislation. If both houses of parliament pass a bill that the president vetoes, a two-thirds majority in both houses are necessary to override the veto.

Last modified 22 August, 2017