Assessing the consistency of national mitigation actions in the G20 with the Paris Agreement


Headline issue

This study uses the ‘Paris consistency monitor’ to assess whether the past and present action by G20 countries on climate mitigation is consistent with meeting the key requirements of the Paris Agreement based on three indicators:

  • The consistency of domestic emissions targets with those pledged in the NDCs;
  • Progress towards meeting 2020 emissions reduction targets pledged under the Copenhagen and Cancun Accords;
  • Past performance on ratcheting up the ambition on climate change mitigation based on evidence from country responses to the Kyoto Protocol and the subsequent Copenhagen and Cancun Accords

Key findings

The performance of G20 countries against these indicators is mixed. They fall into three broad categories:

  1. G20 countries where past and present action on climate change is either completely or mostly consistent with meeting the key requirements of the Paris Agreement
    The European Union (EU) as a whole, as well as France, Germany, and the UK demonstrate past and present action on climate mitigation that is completely consistent with meeting the key requirements of the Paris Agreement. Brazil, China and Italy perform strongly, though they still need to update some aspects of their domestic legislation or executive action to bring their national targets into accordance with their NDCs.
  1. G20 countries where past and present action on climate change is moderately consistent with meeting the key requirements of the Paris Agreement
    This group consists of Japan, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Russia, South Africa and South Korea. Some improvements are needed for these countries to meet the key requirements of the Paris Agreement. India, Russia, South Korea and Mexico need to upgrade the timeframe of their domestic targets to make them consistent with their NDC. India, South Korea and Mexico need to increase the level of their targets to make them consistent with their NDC. India needs adjust the level of its domestic target and to consider upgrading its scope from sectoral to economy-wide to be consistent with its NDCs. Indonesia, Mexico, South Africa and South Korea need to increase domestic action to meet their 2020 targets. India has not provided sufficient information on the baselines for its targets to make an assessment of its performance in increasing ambition over time. Japan, Russia and South Africa have shown mixed progress  in increasing the ambition of their climate action.
  1. G20 Countries where past and present action on climate change is largely inconsistent with meeting the key requirements of the Paris Agreement
    Argentina, Australia, Canada, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United States are falling behind. Significant improvement in national mitigation action is needed to meet the key requirements of the Paris Agreement. All lack overall framework legislation or regulation on climate change. All need to move from sectoral to economy-wide targets and extend the timeframe of their targets to 2030. All are either behind on meeting their 2020 targets or have not set any. Australia, Canada and the United States have been inconsistent in their efforts to ratchet up their ambition over time. Australia and Canada have a solid framework for developing legislation in principle, but due in part to political considerations have shown insufficient progress on implementation.