The Paris Agreement includes global goals for both reducing emissions and adapting to the impacts of climate change. This raises the question of how to ensure that countries’ long-term adaptation plans align with their emissions reduction goals and are low carbon.

This discussion brief presents early findings from research into this question commissioned by GIZ and funded by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety.

Among the major lessons learned:

Most national low-emission development strategies (LEDS) do not consider the impacts of climate change – and the need to integrate adaptation – in their scenario development and projections. Similarly, long-term strategies for adaptation tend to omit the impacts of low-carbon pathways.

Further work to document the main barriers to integration of mitigation and adaptation, and to identify actions to address these barriers, is a priority.

Despite the difficulties and barriers, taking into account the changing climate in LEDS and low-carbon visions in adaptation strategies will be crucial.