Short introduction on Peru’s emissions
Although CO2 is the driving force behind the temperature changes, other gases such as methane (CH4) also contribute their share to global warming, for example through the exploitation of gas fields, and emissions by livestock. While methane is emitted much less than CO2 on a global scale, it is a much stronger greenhouse gas (GHG). Scientists estimated the relative strength of the important Kyoto greenhouse gases so that we can convert all emissions to an equivalent of CO2 emissions. For example, the emission of one ton of methane has approximately the warming effect of 25 tons of CO2. The factor of 25 reflects the climate forcing on a 100-year time horizon, following the Global Warming Potential presented in the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4).
With greenhouse gas emissions of approximately the equivalent of 111.1 mega tonnes of CO2 (Mt CO2eq), Peru contributed 0.23% to the global greenhouse gas emissions of 2017 (rank 51 - incl. EU27 on rank 3). All emissions estimates exclude emissions and absorption from land, which result from activities such as cutting down or planting of forests (Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry: LULUCF). Emissions from bunker fuels (international aviation and shipping) were also excluded, as they are not accounted for in national totals.
For 2030, Peru’s global contribution to greenhouse gas emissions is projected to increase to approximately 0.29% (166.5 mega tonnes of CO2 equivalent / rank 45 - incl. EU27 on rank 4). The emissions projections for Peru were derived by downscaling the Shared Socio-Economic Pathways’ (SSPs) “Middle-of-the-Road” baseline marker scenario SSP2. These pathways describe certain narratives of socio-economic developments and were, i.a., used to derive greenhouse gas emissions scenarios that correspond to these developments. SSP2 is a narrative with little shifts in socio-economic patterns compared to historical ones, and is connected to medium socio-economic challenges for both climate mitigation and adaptation. While different models were used for each storyline, per SSP (SSPs1-5) one model was chosen as representative “marker scenario”. As the emissions projections are not readily available on country-level, but national estimates are important, the pathways were downscaled in the aftermath. In 2017, Peru represented 0.41% of the global population. Its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2017 were 0.33% of the global GDP.
Looking at the highest contributing emissions sectors and gases separately, we find that in 2017 the highest contributing emissions sectors were Energy and Agriculture (59.2% and 26.3%). Amongst the greenhouse gases that are considered in the Kyoto Protocol, the strongest contributor with 61.2% was CO2. This was followed by CH4 emissions, with a significantly lower share of 24.8%. When not considering the sectors and gases independently, but the sector-gas combinations instead, Energy CO2 and Agriculture CH4 (56.6% and 13.8%) represented the largest emissions in 2017.
Greenhouse gas mitigation and Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC)
In 2015, the majority of countries agreed to the Paris Agreement (PA), with the goal of “Holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, recognizing that this would significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change” (Article 2.1.a). Countries stated their pledges and targets towards achieving the PA’s goals in their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). With Article 4.4 of the Paris Agreement, Parties decided that “Developed country Parties should continue taking the lead by undertaking economy-wide absolute emission reduction targets. Developing country Parties should continue enhancing their mitigation efforts, and are encouraged to move over time towards economy-wide emission reduction or limitation targets in the light of different national circumstances.”
In its NDC, the Peruvian State commits to a GHG mitigation target (NDC, p. 5) planning that its net greenhouse gas emissions do not exceed 208.8 MtCO2eq [SAR] in 2030 (unconditional target). Additionally, emissions could reach a maximum level of 179.0 MtCO2eq SAR depending on the availability of international external financing and the existence of favourable conditions (conditional goal, GWP: NDC, p. 7). The 2020 NDC is an increase in ambition, with the unconditional reduction being increased from 20% to 30%, and the conditional total reduction being increased from 30% to 40% (NDC, p. 9-10). Additionally, the country moved from a more uncertain target type of relative reductions compared to a BAU scenario to absolute target emissions (NDC, p. 9). As Peru’s goals are absolute target emissions, quantification uncertainties are reduced, and the target emissions can be used when, e.g., aggregating mitigation pathways to global emissions to then derive, i.a., the resulting end-of-century warming levels. From the absolute target emissions and relative reductions, the underlying BAU emissions can be calculated to amount to 298.3 MtCO2eq SAR in 2030 (inclLU).
The target is economy wide (NDC, p. 6), and all main IPCC emissions sectors (Energy, IPPU, Agriculture, LULUCF, and Waste) are explicitly stated as covered, with an emphasis on the forestry sector due to its importance with respect to GHG emissions in Peru (NDC, p. 13). All Kyoto GHGs besides NF3 are listed as covered (NDC, p. 7). For NF3, e.g., PRIMAP-hist v2.1 has no historical emissions data available for Peru. NF3 has only been added to the Kyoto GHG basket for the Kyoto Protocol’s second period. It is merely reported by few countries and contributed less than 0.01% to global Kyoto GHG emissions in 2017 (exclLU and exclBF, based on PRIMAP-hist v2.1 HISTCR, in AR4, with its share being influenced by the few available data). In total, this results in an estimated 100.0% of 2017’ emissions being targeted by the NDC (based on PRIMAP-hist v2.1 HISTCR exclLU, in AR4).
In regard to Article 6 of the PA (cooperation and markets), Peru anticipates its participation in the cooperative approaches of the Paris Agreement (NDC, p. 7). To this end, it is preparing the necessary domestic conditions, such as institutional arrangements, regulations and procedures, which, once applied, contribute to increasing the ambition of its NDCs, promote sustainable development and guarantee environmental integrity. The country notes that robust and transparent accounting must be applied to ensure the absence of double counting.
For its long-term objective, the country mentions plans actions to neutralize GHG emissions and adapt to climate change by 2050 (NDC, p. 12), while it also refers to the Technical Study for Carbon Neutrality of Peru to 2050 (NDC, p. 12). Additionally, Peru states that the goals of their national contributions are aligned with a long-term vision aimed at national emissions reaching their maximum point as soon as possible, and, from that moment, be reduced rapidly with the objective of reaching a balance between anthropogenic emissions by anthropogenic sources and absorption by sinks in the year 2050. (NDC, p. 15). From the given information, it is not clear whether Peru aims on carbon or climate neutrality by 2050.
The NDC-assessment is based on Peru’s NDC submitted to the UNFCCC in December 2020. The document was submitted in Spanish, and the above-assessment is based on our best understanding of the Spanish NDC.
The Figure below provides additional information, regarding both the baseline emissions used in our assessment and the quantified mitigated pathways for Peru.
Baseline emissions and mitigated emissions pathways based on the country’s Nationally Determined Contribution. In terms of national emissions, we look at the SSP2 baseline marker scenario, and the emissions of all IPCC sectors. Contributions from LULUCF are excluded (exclLU), and the emissions are based on GWPs from AR4. The left panel (a) shows the baseline emissions, indicating the contributions of the Kyoto Greenhouse Gases CO2, CH4, N2O, and the basket of F-gases to the national emissions. If we could extract baseline data exclLU from the NDC, you can see their values as black squares (converted from GWP SAR to AR4 if needed). In the right panel (b), the quantified mitigated emissions pathways are shown, based on information from the country’s NDC and also on non-NDC emissions baselines, per target conditionality and range (marked un-/conditional best/worst). Even though not all countries have targets with different conditionalities or ranges, we need assumptions for all four cases to build one global pathway per conditionality plus range combination and to derive corresponding temperature estimates. Therefore, we indicate these four pathways here. Per combination, we performed several quantifications with differing assumptions and show the median and the minimal and maximal pathways here. Additionally, if we could quantify the targets based on data extracted purely from the NDC - or if the targets were directly given in absolute emissions, these targets are shown as squares (in the GWP originally given in the NDC).
Data sources and further information
- Historical emissions: PRIMAP-hist v2.1 (Guetschow et al., 2016, 2019).
- Historical socio-economic data: PRIMAP-hist Socio-Eco v2.1 (Guetschow et al., 2019).
- Projected emissions and socio-economic data: downscaled SSPs (Guetschow et al., 2020, 2020).
- NDC quantifications: NDCmitiQ (Guenther et al., 2020, 2021).
- GDP is given in purchasing power parity (PPP).
- Main emissions sectors (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, IPCC): Energy, Industrial Processes and Product Use (IPPU), Agriculture and LULUCF (Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry), also named AFOLU (Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use), and Waste.
- Kyoto GHG: basket of several GHGs, namely carbon dioxide (CO2), Methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), sulphur hexafluoride (SF6), and since the second Kyoto Protocol period (2013-20) additionally nitrogen fluoride (NF3).
- Global Warming Potentials (GWPs): GHGs have very different warming potentials. To make them comparable and for aggregation purposes, GWPs are used (how much energy will 1 ton of a certain gas absorb over a defined period of time, relative to the same mass of CO2?).
1 Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), 14473 Potsdam, Germany