To date, Nepal does not have any climate change related laws.

National Framework for Local Adaptation Plans for Action (LAPAs) ( 2012 / Adaptation Framework )

This Framework is prepared to provide the effective delivery of adaptation services to the most climate vulnerable areas and people of Nepal. It supports the design of new and implementation of existing Local Adaptation Plans for Action (LAPAs) that have already been designed and piloted. It is expected to help integrate climate adaptation and resilience…read more

Climate Change Policy ( 2011 / Mitigation and adaptation Framework )

The Climate Change Policy is the centrepiece of Nepal’s response to climate change. The Policy’s preamble discusses a vision of limiting the impacts of climate change through environmental conservation and sustainable development. It further states that the mission of the policy is to address the adverse impacts of climate change and take opportunities to improve…read more

Priority Framework for Action: Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Management in Agriculture 2011-2020 ( 2011 / Adaptation Framework )

This policy outlines the Nepalese government's approach to adapting to climate change and disaster risk management in the agricultural sector. It has five priorities: (1) strengthening institutions, policy and coordination, (2) assessing and monitoring climate risks and vulnerabilities, (3) improved knowledge management, database and awareness raising, (4) implementing technical options by integrating community based approaches,…read more

The National Water Plan ( 2005 )

The water policy is a comprehensive strategy document that addresses the major issues relevant to water use, including agriculture, tourism, hydroelectric power production potential, and other ecosystem services such as fisheries. It mandates research into climate change and the creation of the Himalayan Climate Change Study and Research centre. It also sets out the need…read more

The Hydropower Development Policy ( 2001 )

This Policy revised the original policy document of 1992. The objectives of hydropower development are to generate electricity at low cost and provide reliable and qualitative electric service for both own country and exportable commodity. Connecting electrification with economic activities and extend rural electrification are also the goals of this Policy. The strategies to accomplish…read more

Economy-wide

NDC Laws and National Policies

Not Applicable

Economy Wide | Not Applicable | Target year: N/A | Base year: N/A

Source: NDC

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

Energy

NDC Laws and National Policies

Equip every households in rural areas with smokeless (improved) cooking stoves (ICS) by 2030

Clean Cooking And Heating: Efficient Cookstoves | Target year: 2030

700MW hydrocapacity in 2007, then 2035MW in 2017, then 4000 MW by 2027

Renewable Energy | Trajectory Target | Target year: 2027 | Base year: Business as usual scenario | Source(s): The Nation... (2005 / Executive)

Increase the share of biogas up to 10% as energy for cooking in rural areas

Clean Cooking And Heating: Cleaner Household Fuels

Increase the share of biogas up to 10% as energy for cooking in rural areas

Renewable Energy: Biofuels

Additional 50 MW of electricity from small and micro hydropower plants

Renewable Energy: Hydro

Additional 220 MW of electricity from bio-energy by 2030

Renewable Energy: Biofuels | Target year: 2030

2,100 MW of solar energy by 2030 with arrangements to distribute it through the grid

Renewable Energy: Solar | Target year: 2030

4,000 MW of hydroelectricity by 2020 and 12,000 MW by 2030

Renewable Energy: Hydro | Target year: 2030

Develop a electrical (hydro-powered) rail network by 2040 to support mass transportation of goods and public commuting.

Renewable Energy: Hydro | Target year: 2040

By 2020, increase the share of renewables in energy mix by 20% and diversifying its energy consumption pattern to more industrial and commercial sectors.

Renewable Energy | Target year: 2020

Develop 200 community biogas plants

Renewable Energy: Biofuels

Develop 1,000 institutional biogas plants

Renewable Energy: Biofuels

Develop 130,000 household biogas systems

Renewable Energy: Biofuels

Improve 475,000 cooking stoves

Clean Cooking And Heating: Efficient Cookstoves

Improve 4000 water mills

Renewable Energy: Hydro

Develop 1,500 institutionalsolar power systems (solar PV and solar pumping systems)

Renewable Energy: Solar

Develop 600,000 solar home system

Renewable Energy: Solar

Develop Mini and Micro Hydro Power to reach 15 MW

Renewable Energy: Hydro

Reduce its dependency on fossil fuels by 50%.

Energy: General

80% electrification through renewable energy sources having appropriate energy mix by 2050

Renewable Energy | Target year: 2050

Source: NDC

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

Decrease the rate of air pollution through proper monitoring of sources of air pollutants like wastes, old and unmaintained vehicles, and industries by 2025

Industries: General | Target year: 2025

Source: NDC

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

LULUCF

NDC Laws and National Policies

Protect 0.2 million ha of forests through the implementation of adaptation plans, and mainstream community/ecosystem-based adaptation by 2025.

Sustainable Forest Management | Target year: 2025

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

Plants trees in at least 10% of the current open/barren land

Afforestation

Decrease mean annual deforestation rate by 0.05 percent from about 0.44 percent and 0.18 percent in the Terai and Chure respectively

Conservation

Enhance Nepal's forest carbon stock by at least 5 percent by 2025 as compared to 2015 level

LULUCF/Forestry: General | Target year: 2025

A sub-national project on REDD+ to reduce about 14 million tons of CO2-eq by 2020

REDD+ | Target year: 2020

Maintain 40% of the total area of the country under forest cover

Conservation

Source: NDC

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

Decrease the rate of air pollution through proper monitoring of sources of air pollutants like wastes, old and unmaintained vehicles, and industries by 2025

Vehicle Fleet | Target year: 2025

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

Develop a electrical (hydro-powered) rail network by 2040 to support mass transportation of goods and public commuting.

Public Transport | Target year: 2040

By 2050, decrease the dependency on fossils in the transport sector by 50% through effective mass public transport means

Public Transport | Target year: 2050

By 2020, increase the share of electric vehicle up to 20% from 2010 level.

Vehicle Fleet | Target year: 2020

Source: NDC

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

Decrease the rate of air pollution through proper monitoring of sources of air pollutants like wastes, old and unmaintained vehicles, and industries by 2025

Waste: General | Target year: 2025

Source: 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.

On top of the challenges of political instability, the geography and economy of Nepal place its people under severe risks from the impacts of climate change. The country has a large dependency on rain-fed agriculture. Approximately 86% of the population are dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods and the sector contributes about 33% of GDP. This means there is a high sensi­tivity to changes in precipitation, while the mountainous topography makes the land prone to flash floods. The severity of these is predicted to increase under climate change scenarios with more intense precipitation. Of particular concern are hazards associated with Glacier Lake Outburst Flood (GLOF) events. These rela­tively rare events have massive impacts. Temperature rises in mountain regions increase the amount of meltwater from the retreating glaciers[1], which accumulates behind natural dams of rock and soil (moraine). The moraine damns eventually break and release huge quantities of water with catastrophic consequences for people living in the valleys below. Moreover, changes in Himalayan glaciers present a huge challenge to populations downstream who are dependent on steady supplies of meltwater feeding streams and rivers. These concerns are all the more pressing given that temperatures appear to be rising more quickly at higher elevations.

The government identified the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment (MoSTE) as the Designated National Authority for implementa­tion and co-ordination of climate change policies. A Climate Change Management Division was established within the MoSTE in 2010. A more targeted response comes from the 2009 establishment of the 25-member Climate Change Council, headed by the Prime Minister. In addition, to co-ordinate and implement collaborative programmes, a multi-stakeholder Climate Change Initiatives Co-ordination Committee has been formed with representation from relevant ministries and institutions, international and national non-government organisations, academia, private sector and donors.

The key piece of climate change legislation is the 2011 Climate Change Policy. Implementation of the policy is complemented by a number of developments; most notably the National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA) and National Framework on Local Adaptation Plans for Action (LAPAs) accompany the Climate Change Policy. Other projects complement these national-level initiatives, such as projects focused on capacity building (e.g. National Capacity Needs Self-Assessment Project between 2007 and 2009), and impact assessments examining knowledge generation and assessments such as the Technology Action Plan and related Tech­nology Needs Assessment Project, and the 2014 Economic Impact Assessment of Climate Change in Key Sectors in Nepal.

In the international arena, Nepal has been actively participating in climate negotiation under the UNFCCC process since 2007. As a result of its initiatives on climate change, Nepal has been nominated as the Chair of the Least Developed Countries (LDC) Co-ordination Group for 2013 and 2014 under the UNFCCC process. This provides an opportunity to lead 48 LDCs, and enhance climate change activities in the country. The MoSTE is currently preparing the Second National Commu­nication.

Energy supply

Total energy consumption between 2008 and 2009 was 9.3 million tonnes of oil equivalent (401 million GJ) and 87% of it derived from traditional resources or biomass (fuel wood from forests and trees, agricultural residues from crops and animal dung), 12% from commercial sources (coal, grid electricity and petroleum products) and less than 1% from the alternative sources (biogas, solar power, wind and micro-level hydropower). The Hydropower Development Policy of 2001 sets out strategies to develop hydropower to generate electricity for Nepal (including rural electrification) and for export. The Hydropower Development Plan 2009 aims to develop 10,000 MW of hydropower in 10 years to respond to energy crisis in the country. The task force has submitted the draft report, but it is yet to be discussed and ratified by the Government.

REDD+ and LULUCF

The 2007 interim three-year plan referred to climate change and specifically the potential of REDD+ and carbon trading. There is anticipation that mitigation approaches through forestry can provide win-win outcomes, conferring watershed, biodiversity and soil conservation benefits. REDD+ can also contribute to poverty reduction in the context of climate change. Given the high proportions of people dependent upon agriculture and natural resources including forests, there is a strong focus on community-based forestry management under REDD+. However, there are concerns among forest users such as the Federation of Community Forest Users, Nepal that REDD+ implementation involves too much recentralisation, and that too much revenue from collaborative forest manage­ment programmes will be passed back to central government.

Institutionally, the Ministry of Forests and Soil Conservation has taken the lead role in implementing REDD+, and has developed a REDD+ department (“cell”) in addition to declaring it a ministerial priority. The cell is responsible for co-ordinating REDD+ readiness processes under the World Bank’s Forest Carbon Partnership Facility and other REDD projects including developing the REDD+ Preparedness Plan.

Adaptation

With the aim of making the country’s economy and infrastructure climate-resilient, the National Planning Commission has emphasised the need to screen development plans for resiliency. Implementation of the Climate Change Policy (2011) and the NAPA were the first high-level responses to climate change, intended to mainstream adaptation to climate change within national policies and reduce vulnerability. The Policy also encourages development sectors to incorporate climate change concerns into policies and other instruments of rele­vant sectors. The Policy equally emphasises development and use of clean and renewable energies and knowledge generation to address impacts of climate change through adaptation and impact mitigation.

The Nepal Climate Change Support Programme (NCCSP) assisted by the United Nations Development Programme commenced in 2013 (and is expected to continue till December 2015). The NCCSP provides assistance to climate change adaptation for the poorest and most vulnerable communities and its key targets include the development of 100 LAPAs and to reduce the vulnerability of 1 million people by 2015. It implemented Nepal’s NAPA and endorsed the National Framework on LAPAs. The National Framework on LAPAs act as major guiding policy instruments for mainstreaming climate change activities in general, particularly climate change adaptation. MoSTE is now engaged in implementing NAPA-prioritised projects with support from DFID and EU, and the Least Developed Countries Fund.

[1]               Glaciers in the Dudh Koshi basin are retreating at rates of 10m/yr to 60m/yr

To date, Nepal does not have any litigation listed.

The institutional structure of Nepal has been weakened through its recent experience of political instability. The king seized power in 2005, which preci­pi­tated the mass demonstrations of the People’s Movement (Jana Andolan), which sought a return to, and the further development of, democracy in Nepal. This occurred in parallel with the culmination of the Maoist insurgency, which ended in 2006 under the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Rebel leaders demanded a move to republicanism, and the convening of an assembly to draft a new constitution for the Himalayan state. These events heralded the begin­nings of the constitutional reform process. Central to the facilitation of the reform is the Interim Constitution of Nepal, 2007, which replaces the 1990 Constitution of the Kingdom of Nepal. The first President was elected in July 2008.

The legal system is based on English Common Law. It adopted secularism as a key tenet of the constitution (and thereby declassified the country as a “Hindu Kingdom”). However, it retains some Hindu legal concepts. Despite the transition to a republic, the basis of the parliamentary system remains. There is now no Second House, the members of which were merged into the House of Representatives. As an interim document, the 2007 Constitution provides for the establishment of the unicameral Constituent Assembly (CA) and the preparation of the new constitution. There are 601 seats in the CA, 240 of which are elected by direct popular vote, 335 by proportional representation and 26 appointed by the Cabinet (Council of Ministers). The term of the CA is three years after the first CA meeting is held unless dissolved earlier. The CA dissolved in May 2012 after it failed to promulgate a constitution, and the second CA election was held in November 2014. President Ram Baran Yadav was elected in 2008 by the CA as the head of state. The presidency will last until the new constitution is promulgated. A Prime Minister is officially appointed by the President as the head of the Government. Prime Minister Sushil Koirala was appointed in February 2014.

Last modified 21 August, 2017