Transparency is an essential element of the Paris Agreement, which was agreed in 2015 in Paris at the UNFCCC COP 21, and came into force a year later.

Nationally determined contributions (NDCs) are at the heart of the Paris Agreement. NDCs embody efforts by each country to reduce national emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change. The Paris Agreement (Article 4, paragraph 2) requires each Party to prepare, communicate and maintain successive NDCs that it intends to achieve.

The NDC Transparency Check of Climate Transparency provides recommendations on what information countries should provide in their 2020 NDC Update to ensure its clarity, transparency, and understanding in order to conform with the Agreement (annex of 4/CMA.1 under Article 4.8.).

Without this transparency, the outcome of NDCs (in terms of emissions limitation/reduction) is not clear, and a) countries cannot be held to account for achieving their targets, and b) the contribution of NDC targets to the global goals of the Paris Agreement cannot be clearly assessed. Transparency enables governments, civil society and other stakeholders to check whether commitments made are ambitious, just and what needs to be done to implement them successfully.

By giving information e.g. on assumptions behind commitments, baselines, implementation periods as well participatory processes to arrive at those commitments, governments have the opportunity and the obligation to provide much needed backgrounds on their commitments: Transparency drives action.

This is done by evaluating existing NDCs and assessing the information provided the annex of 4/CMA.1 under Article 4.8. of the Paris Agreement, to come up with clear and practical recommendation on which information should be included in the 2020 NDC Update in order to be in full conformance with international agreements.

The method is structured in two parts, which should be read together. The first section outlines the assessment method, elaborating how to complete the table with the full assessment. The table is the second section. It is structured following the paragraphs and sub-paragraphs of the Annex to decision 4/CMA.1 (UNFCCC 2018a).

Each country’s assessment evaluates the current NDC target and NDC scale of conformance, as well as provides a detailed assessment and suggested good practices for adoption, which would enhance the transparency of updated NDCs.

Click on the picture to download the document.






South Korea

Over time, the assessments of all G20 countries will be available and updated on the website. In 2021, we are planning to assess the NDC Updates based on the recommendations provided.

If you have any questions or need support to apply this assessment to non-G20 countries, please contact Sebastian Wegner: