Climate Action Tracker says only one nation — The Gambia — is on track to cut emissions and undertake its share of actions to keep the world from exceeding the Paris agreement goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming since pre-industrial times. The research and independent science-based assessment group, which tracks countries’ greenhouse gas emissions commitments and actions, has released its annual report on Wednesday.
One of the pillars of The Gambia’s strategy to achieve its emission reductions targets is the uptake of renewable energy technologies, according to the Climate Action Tracker. After a slow start, the Gambia is now rapidly increasing its renewable energy capacity with a total of 170 MW in solar PV projects in the pipeline for 2021-2025, with partial finance from the World Bank and the European Investment Bank.
In tracking the greenhouse gas emissions commitments and actions of countries, Climate Action Tracker quantifies and evaluates climate change mitigation commitments and assesses whether countries are on track to meeting them.
CAT’s assessment on The Gambia includes the Group’s policy analysis from 27 November 2020 translated into a new rating methodology. However, the research group says it has not undertaken any new analysis of The Gambia’s climate policies, nor has it taken into account The Gambia’s updated NDC, which was submitted on 12 September 2021.
Climate Action Tracker will, however, analyze The Gambia fully in the coming months, at which time its ratings may change.
Meanwhile, the CAT rates The Gambia’s climate targets and policies as “1.5°C Paris Agreement compatible.” The “1.5°C Paris Agreement compatible” rating indicates that The Gambia’s climate policies and commitments are consistent with the Paris Agreement’s 1.5°C temperature limit compared to their fair-share contribution.
The “1.5°C Paris Agreement compatible” rating indicates that The Gambia’s climate policies and actions are consistent with limiting warming to 1.5°C. The Gambia’s climate policies and actions do not require other countries to make comparably deeper reductions.
The research group has also warned that although The Gambia has an ambitious conditional emissions reduction target that would bend its emissions downwards, its current policies are not on track to meet this target.
Because at a time when countries should move away from fossil fuels, The Gambia has set targets to start oil extraction in the country and to stop importing oil by 2025. In 2018, the Australian oil company FAR started test drilling The Gambia’s first offshore well in 40 years.
These policies are also off track when compared with modeled domestic pathways. As a result, the Gambia will need to implement more stringent policies to meet its conditional target, for which it will need additional support.
The Gambia submitted its updated NDC on 12 September 2021. Therefore, the update is not reflected in this assessment. Consequently, Climate Action Tracker intends to assess The Gambia’s update later this year.