Mainstreaming Climate Policy in the Gulf Cooperation Council States

This paper by Mari Luomi examines current trends in domestic climate policy in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states. Given the politicisation of the topic at the international level, the paper takes a bottom-up approach that departs from the countries’ national circumstances, capabilities and vulnerabilities. It emphasises the opportunities inherent in integrating the goals of low-carbon, resource-efficient and climate-resilient development into these countries’ sustainable development goals.

Following a review of the relevant international frameworks for action and support, and available domestic policies and measures, the study builds a comprehensive climate action profile for the GCC states, with analyses of national circumstances, capabilities and vulnerabilities, and greenhouse gas emissions. For the three most active GCC states in this area, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, the study presents a comprehensive, sector-based assessment of existing measures aimed at or with benefits for emission reductions and climate resilience.

The study demonstrates that there is large potential for enhanced mitigation and adaptation action in the GCC states. It also argues that climate policy mainstreaming and low-emission development strategies (LEDS) would help these states in aligning their climate change-related policy aims with existing economic development visions and development strategies in a way that creates positive synergies.

By: Mari Luomi

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