GUIDE: Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs)

GUIDE: Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs)

Share this:
Resource detail:
Organisation: Ricardo-AEA
Tags: mitigation, COP21, Intended Nationally Determined Contributions, Paris, UNFCCC

CDKN and Ricardo-AEA have revised their popular Guide to INDCs, which helps countries to prepare their Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) for the UNFCCC.  This new edition of May 2015 has been revised following discussions with stakeholders and includes new material and specific examples for Small Island Developing States (SIDS) - in addition to its original focus on Least Developed Countries (LDCs). In response to strong demand, we are also delighted to offer this revised edition in French: Guide de Préparation des INDC and in Spanish: Guía para las INDCs.

INDCs are contributions by the Parties to the UNFCCC towards achieving the ultimate objective of the Convention: to prevent dangerous human interference with the Earth’s climate. The UNFCCC has invited all Parties to communicate to the secretariat their INDCs "well in advance of COP 21" and it will prepare by 1 November 2015 a synthesis report on the "aggregate effect of the INDCs" that have been submitted before 1 October.

LDCs and SIDS have contributed less to current global emissions than other countries; so the burden of cutting emissions will rest with major economies. However to avoid dangerous levels of global warming, all countries will have to play a role. The UN has communicated that contributions towards a global agreement should reflect the ‘special circumstances’ of these low-emitting countries.

Many LDC and SIDS governments are preparing INDCs and see the advantages in doing so:

  • demonstrating that their plans for economic growth are compatible with low-carbon, climate-resilient development;
  • highlighting how climate mitigation actions can be planned in ways that enhance climate adaptation, and deliver other immediate benefits to society, such as poverty reduction, improved public health, energy access and energy security;
  • capturing the potential for reducing or avoiding greenhouse gas emissions in climate adaptation plans and programmes;
  • encouraging other countries to take equivalent action, and so increasing global ambition and reducing climate impacts; and
  • attracting financial, capacity-building, technology transfer and other types of international support.

This guide seeks to address the broad range of approaches being considered by LDCs and SIDS in preparing their INDCs, including the challenges they face and different national circumstances and levels of capacity, preparedness and ambition. The Guide to INDCs provides a practical example of how an INDC could be structured, with examples to illustrate a narrative and sources of background information.

The Guide to INDCs is not an official publication of the UNFCCC, nor is it endorsed by the UNFCCC. However, it was developed in consultation with a range of stakeholders, including authors of existing INDC guidance, representatives from LDCs, and organisations working with CDKN to support INDC preparations.  It draws from the INDCs which have already been submitted, and a range of referenced literature. We have also ensured that this template is consistent with existing guidance published by GIZ and WRI-UNDP, upon which we have built.


Guide to INDCs (750kb)

Guide de Préparation des INDC - français (750kb).

Guía para las INDCs - español (750kb).

Contact us

Kiran Sura

Head of Advocacy Fund for Negotiations Support, CDKN

Useful links

CDKN analysis and learning on the preparation of INDCs

UNFCCC - information on INDCs




Add new comment

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.