Member Since

NOV 2016

Partners Involved

The EU, Germany (through GIZ), IRENA, NREL, Pew, The Nature Conservancy, UNDP, and the World Bank.

Seychelles committed in its NDC to decarbonize its economy completely by 2050, making it one of the few developing countries to target net zero emissions by 2050.

Blue economy—sectors dependent on healthy marine and coastal resources—is at the heart of Seychelles’ climate ambition and vision for economic resilience and growth. A Small Island Developing States (SIDS), Seychelles is classified as a high-income economy. Seychelles comprises about 115 islands just above the sea surface. Local communities reside, and the majority of Seychelles’ urban areas and infrastructure concentrate, at sea level tightly next to the shore. Populations and industries are particularly vulnerable to increases in climate events and sea level rise. Given its large economic exclusivity zone, much of Seychelles’ economic activity relies on the sustainable management of marine resources. Tourism and fisheries are the largest economic sectors of Seychelles; both contribute to the intensity of Seychelles’ greenhouse gas emissions.

Leveraging Blue Carbon

An international leader in blue economy, the East African nation takes preserving blue carbon, the carbon stored in coastal and marine ecosystems, very seriously. Seychelles’ national development strategy prioritizes sequestering and storing blue carbon while conserving and restoring coastal and marine environments. Seychelles aims to protect 50 percent of blue carbon stocks by 2025 and 100 percent by 2030. Seychelles has a similar conservation policy for mangroves and hopes to expand it to seagrass meadows. The President of Seychelles highlighted that identifying seagrass meadows throughout the archipelago is a priority at a ministerial cabinet meeting in which the government validated the revised NDC. Seychelles intends to continuously monitor the CO2 absorption from seagrass and report its NDC.

Seychelles’ coastal and marine areas are home to rich ecosystems, including endemic flora and fauna. Recent work on mapping these ecosystems’ blue carbon potential aims at assessing their mitigation potential and at promoting their conservation. Seychelles is conducting a national survey of seagrass with support from PEW, TNC, SeyCCAT, and the University of Oxford.

The Government of Seychelles identifies in its NDC that it intends for coastal planning and infrastructure to be regulated at the national and local level to prioritize the consideration of “blue” Nature-based Solutions (NBS) for climate resilience. Seychelles’ NDC specifies it will protect its blue carbon ecosystems (i.e., at least 50 percent of its seagrass and mangrove ecosystems by 2025 and 100 percent of seagrass and mangrove ecosystems by 2030). Seychelles will establish a long-term monitoring program for seagrass and mangrove ecosystems by 2025. That will include the GHG sink of Seychelles’ blue carbon ecosystems by 2025 within the National Greenhouse Gas Inventory. Seychelles’ NDC commits to implementing its adopted Marine Spatial Plan and effectively managing the 30 percent of marine protected areas within the Seychelles’ Exclusive Economic Zone.

Renewables and Green Transport to Decarbonize the Economy

Seychelles committed in its NDC to decarbonize its economy completely by 2050, making it one of the few developing countries to target net zero emissions by 2050.

The government is rewriting its energy law to empower the development of renewable energy in the country, which will enable the reduction of emissions for the tourism sector. The Energy Commission in charge of renewables is being absorbed into the government and will help encourage private sector involvement, promoting grid energy storage, and supporting independent power producers. The World Bank supported drafting those energy laws, regulations and guidelines. IRENA and Commonwealth Secretariat are also supporting the Ministry of Finance to bolster finance of clean energy.

The European Commission is working on decarbonizing Seychelles’ transport sector by promoting electric vehicles and expanding public transport—particularly on Mahé, the Seychelles archipelago’s largest island, and for interisland ferries, which are responsible for a great portion of transportation emissions. Additional partners supporting this undertaking are NREL and the World Bank.

The EC provided support as part of CAEP to revise the NDC’s mitigation section. This work included revising the sectoral emissions profiles and targets in the NDC and devising a series of actions for the government to implement its mitigation commitments in the revised NDC submitted in August 2021. UNDP provided support for the MRV proposal.

A Revised NDC Addressing Refrigerant and Cooling Gases

Tourism is the nation’s main economic engine; numerous hotels dot the islands of Seychelles, and thus air conditioning is a major source of energy consumption. Refrigerant and cooling gases account for significant emissions. GIZ’s Ozone project supported the assessment of refrigerant and cooling gases, and their mitigation potential in Seychelles. The study’s results were included in the revised NDC. Seychelles implemented regulations, in effect since February 2021, that incentivize the transition to low-Global Warming Potential refrigerants through a staggered levy system and VAT exemptions. This supports the reduction of HFC-related (direct) emissions. The aim is to ban high-Global Warming Potential refrigerants for air conditioning and domestic and commercial refrigerators starting in 2025 (domestic and commercial refrigerators) and 2030 (split ACs). The mitigation potential, including direct and indirect emissions, totals an estimated 77 ktCO2e for the time period up to 2030.

This work was done through the Climate Action Enhancement Package with support from UNDP, the World Bank, IRENA, and the EC, with additional support from GIZ, The Nature Conservancy, and Pew. As a result, Seychelles’ updated NDC features an increase in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from 188 ktCO2e, stated in NDC 2015, to 293,8 ktCO2e by 2030.