Today, Brookings Institution publishes a new paper by Guy Edwards, J. Timmons Roberts, Monica Araya, and Cristián Retamal on how the current round of the UN climate talks can catalyze climate action in Latin America. Members of Brown University’s Climate and Development Lab conducted the research for the case studies on Brazil, Costa Rica, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela: Alison Kirsch, Sophie Purdom, Zihou Jiang, Cassidy Bennett, Camila Bustos, Alexis Duran, Maris Jones, Victoria Hoffmeister, Ximena Carranza-Risco, Marguerite SuozzoGolé, Allison Reilly, and Jeff Baum.
In December over 190 countries will converge on Paris to finalize a new global agreement on climate change that is scheduled to come into force in 2020. A central part of it will be countries’ national pledges, or “intended nationally determined contributions” (INDCs), to be submitted this year which will serve as countries’ national climate change action plans. For Latin American countries, the INDCs present an unprecedented opportunity. They can be used as a strategic tool to set countries or at least some sectors on a cleaner path toward low-carbon sustainable development, while building resilience to climate impacts. The manner in which governments define their plans will determine the level of political buy-in from civil society and business. The implementation of ambitious contributions is more likely if constituencies consider them beneficial, credible, and legitimate.