Belarus has pledged to reduce its emissions by 8% relative to 1990 levels by 2020. With current policies in place it is likely to over-achieve its insufficient pledge. Current policies are expected to result in a 24-30% decrease below 1990 levels, leading to an emissions level of 106 MtCO2e in 2020.
Belarus's target for the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol is to reduce emissions by 12% below 1990 levels. In May 2012, Belarus submitted a provisional QELRO level of 88, which is also inscribed in the Doha Amendment. This means that Belarus’s average yearly emissions during the period of 2013-2020 are proposed to be 88% of 1990 levels. Belarus is the only Annex I country that does not have a long-term target. Therefore, dashed lines after 2020 in the figure above illustrate the trajectories from the raw pledge/Kyoto target towards BAU in 2050.
The Doha amendment limit targets for the second commitment period to the average historic emissions 2008-20101. This affects Belarus and results in an almost 23 MtCO2e/yr lower Kyoto pathway for the period 2012-2020.
Current emissions are already at 37.2% below 1990 emissions (CRF, 2013), and 31.4% below reference base year levels. This allows Belarus to substantially increase emissions from today's levels and still remain within their target.
Belarus proposed a target of -8% relative to 1990 (1995 for F-gases) for the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol (2008-2012). Base year emissions for this pledge are set by Belarus’ initial report under the Kyoto protocol.
Under the Convention, Belarus originally proposed a target of -5 to -10% relative to 1990 emissions by 2020. This has now been clarified to -8% relative to 1990 levels by 2020. The target is still conditional on access to the Kyoto flexible mechanisms, intensification of technology transfer, capacity building and experience enhancement for Belarus. For the 2020 pledge, we assume the most recent inventory data for 1990 as the basis. These are substantially higher than the emissions stated in the initial report. Therefore, despite an unchanged pledge from the first commitment period, the actual emissions allowed by the pledge for 2020 are higher than for the first commitment period and the emissions pathway shows growing emissions from 2012 to 2020.
Current trend description
Currently implemented policies are expected to continue the increasing trend in emissions to reach an emissions level (excl. LULUCF) of 106 MtCO2e by 2020. Despite the growth, this is still in line with Belarus' pledge. Given the economic collapse during the early 1990’s emissions dropped by almost 40% over the 90s, reaching an absolute minimum in 2001/2002 with 77 MtCO2e. Based on current levels of emissions and the expected trend Belarus is expected to generate additional surplus under the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol.
According to its Fifth National Communication (2009) Belarus had implemented all available, relatively low-cost measures for the reduction of GHG emissions at that point in time. It is envisaged that revenue from sales of surplus AAUs from the first commitment period will provide the resources for further investment in mitigation efforts.
The fuel and energy sectors show the highest potential for emissions reductions due to the high energy intensity (energy consumption per unit of GDP) in the country. It is therefore in these sectors that the effect of implemented policies to reduce emissions is mostly seen. Industrial and energetic objects are out-dated so there is a potential for GHG cuts through modernization and through a trend toward the growth in use of renewable energy resources
A National Program aimed at ensuring control of emissions growth, and developing measures for emitting industries is an important step Belarus has taken in solving the problem of climate change. Main policies included in the current trend projections are highlighted in Table 5. The main policies also contain a small number of activities that were included in the current trend projection calculations but were then not implemented in the country.
Since the last National Communication, and thus the last available projections, a number of policies were implemented. We have not yet been able to assess and quantify these new policies for inclusion in the current trend pathway.
Date of pledge
Targets for 2020 were calculated from the most recent national inventory submissions (2012). We have not applied LULUCF accounting to Belarus’ pledge, as they only provided data for forest management and not on the other required activities of afforestation, reforestation and deforestation. Belarus also provided reference levels for forest management which are equal to 1990 levels.
Greenhouse gas emission inventories are available from 1990 to 2011 in the CRF 2013 submitted to UNFCCC. Current trend projections are based on emission projections from Fifth National Communication of the Republic of Belarus (Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection of the Republic of Belarus, 2009). These projections do not reflect latest historic data. We therefore use historic data up to 2011 and then apply growth rates from the two projections to determine the range.
CRF (2013). UNFCCC AWG-KP Submissions 2013. Common Reporting Format.
Belarus (2012). Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP) Presentation, Bonn, May 2012
Government of Belarus (2012a). Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP) Presentation, Bonn, May 2012
Government of Belarus (2012b). Information by Parties included in Annex I listed in annex 1 to decision 1/CMP.7 on their quantified emission limitation or reduction objectives for the second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol
Government of Belarus (2010). Belarus' pledge to the Copenhagen Accord. Compiled in: Compilation of economy-wide emission reduction targets to be implemented by Parties included in Annex I to the Convention, UNFCCC (2011).
Government of Belarus (2009). Submission on definitions, modalities, rules and guidelines for the treatment of land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF) in the post 2012 period Source: 30 April 2009, FCCC/KP/AWG/2009/MISC.11
Government of Belarus (2008). Submission on additional and updated available information on the analysis of mitigation potential and the scale of greenhouse emission reduction, FCCC/KP/AWG/2008/MISC.4
Government of Belarus (2006). Initial Report of the Republic of Belarus under the Kyoto Protocol
Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection of the Republic of Belarus (2009). Fifth National Communication of the Republic of Belarus Under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
1 This is part of the Doha decisions and constitutes part of the amendments to the Kyoto Protocol. Amendments only come into effect once they are ratified by Parties.