Bridging the Cross-Sectoral Gap in Pursuing More Ambitious Climate Targets in Indonesia


In 2022, Indonesia increased its GHG emission reduction target from 29% using its own resources to 31.89%, and from 41% to 43.80% with international assistance. The government considers this target more ambitious than before. Several policies have been implemented to achieve this, including the FOLU Net Sink 2030, the B40 policy, increased actions in the waste sector, heightened targets in the agricultural and industrial sectors, Presidential Regulation 18/2021 concerning the Value of Carbon Economy, and Presidential Regulation 112/2022 concerning the Acceleration of Renewable Energy Development for Electricity Supply. These policies serve as the foundation for the increased target.

According to the Climate Action Tracker analysis (2022), Indonesia has taken positive steps towards reducing emissions, such as the plan to phase out coal-fired power plants by 2050. The role of international assistance is crucial in facilitating Indonesia’s coal phase-out. However, CAT assesses Indonesia’s climate targets and policies as ‘highly insufficient’, indicating that the country’s current climate policies and commitments do not align with limiting global temperature rise to below 1.5°C and will result in a temperature increase worldwide.

Indonesia is not alone, and the trend of increasing GHG emissions will continue alongside the rise in energy consumption. According to the ASEAN Center for Energy, GHG emissions from the energy sector in ASEAN are projected to reach 4,171 Mt CO2-eq by 2040. Through a joint statement, ASEAN committed to communicating their respective NDCs that reflect ambitions aligned with UNFCCC decisions and the Paris Agreement. Among the six ASEAN countries analyzed by CAT (Climate Action Tracker, 2022), 3 (Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam) have a ‘critically insufficient’ climate action status. This rating indicates that these countries’ climate commitments and policies are minimal and not consistent with the Paris Agreement.

In its leadership of ASEAN in 2023, Indonesia has prioritized green infrastructure development, SDGs implementation, and energy security. From the outcome of the 42nd ASEAN Summit held on May 10-11, 2023, it appears that there is no specific statement on the climate action agenda in ASEAN. Therefore, with this momentum of ASEAN leadership, it is essential for Indonesia to reaffirm its climate commitments aligned with the Paris Agreement and push for more ambitious climate targets and emission reductions at the Southeast Asian regional level.

IESR intends to assess the status of policies and the potential for increasing climate ambition in line with the below 1.5°C target through a joint seminar involving various policymakers, academicians, and civil society organizations. This meeting aims to facilitate an exchange of information and discussions to harmonize the perspectives of policymakers from sectors that impact climate change with those of practitioners and activists working on climate issues. The goal is to emphasize the need to elevate Indonesia’s climate ambition and its translation within ASEAN.

Furthermore, the seminar is expected to foster synergy among all stakeholders to ensure Indonesia successfully achieves its climate targets in accordance with the Paris Agreement. The seminar will also delve into Indonesia’s opportunities and challenges in meeting the Paris Agreement’s climate target of limiting temperature rise to below 1.5°C. Additionally, the outcomes of these discussions can serve as input and recommendations for the climate and energy transition agenda, particularly for Indonesia’s leadership in ASEAN 2023.


  1. Facilitate the exchange of information, practitioner and expert perspectives, and civil society organization (CSO) expectations regarding the conditions, potential, and challenges for achieving a more ambitious climate target in alignment with the 1.5°C goal.
  2. Provide insights to guide Indonesia’s leadership in the climate agenda and energy transition during its chairmanship of ASEAN, influencing various sectors relevant to these matters.

Check out 6 Differences in Indonesia’s 2016 NDC and 2021 Update Results

Since signing the Paris Agreement in 2015, Indonesia has begun to prepare a Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) document as an official statement for its emission reduction commitments. Indonesia’s first NDC was submitted to the UNFCCC in 2016. Along the way, many parties considered that the NDC owned by Indonesia had not been able to answer the challenges of the climate crisis and efforts to reduce emissions.

In 2021, with input from various parties, Indonesia will update its NDC document. In terms of emission reduction targets, nothing has changed, but the most noticeable difference is that various adjustments have been made to the 2020-2024 RPJMN and Indonesia’s Vision 2045. In addition, the Ministry of Environment and Forestry (KLHK) has also issued a Long Term Strategy document to complement this latest NDC. Other things added to the latest Indonesian NDC can be seen in the following comparison table.

NoPointNDC 2016NDC 2021
1Alignment with national strategyAlign with the Nawa Cita concept.
Alignment with RPJMN 2020-2024 and Indonesia Vision 2045 through NDC
2Projected GHG emissions at BAU
Energy CM2: 1.271MTon CO2e

FOLU CM2: 64 MTon CO2e

Emission reduction targets

CM2 Energy: 398 MTon CO2e

FOLU CM2: 650 MTon CO2e
Energy CM2: 1,407 Mton CO2e

FOLU CM2: 68 Mton CO2e

Emissions reduction targets:

CM2 Energy: 441 MTon CO2e

FOLU CM2: 692 MTon CO2e
3Long Term Strategy (LTS) Document
Not available
Available, fulfilling the mandate of the Paris Agreement Article 4.19 (include gender equality and decent work issues)
4Explanation of assumptions in business as usual (BAU) projections and targets
Not available

5Information about Indonesia's commitment to various international conventions
Not availableAvailable
6Translating the Katowice Package as a Guide for Implementing the Paris Agreement
Not translated

In the latest document, the Government of Indonesia describes 3 climate change risk mitigation scenarios, namely CPOS (Current Policy Scenario), TRNS (Transition Scenario), and LCCP (Low Carbon scenario Compatible with Paris Agreement). In addition to emission reduction targets, these three scenarios have a direct impact on per capita income and investment costs that must be paid by the government.

Are Indonesia’s emission reduction targets relevant to achieving the Paris Agreement targets?

Indonesia’s steps to improve its NDC have drawn appreciation and criticism. Appreciation is given for efforts to clarify points that have not been included in the NDC document, such as aspects of gender equality and decent work, adding a Long Term strategy (LTS) document, and including Indonesia’s commitment to the International Convention on adaptation.

On the other hand, criticism comes because the ambition to reduce emissions has not increased from the previous document. The emission reduction target in Indonesia’s NDC does not reflect the sense of urgency to respond to the current climate crisis. In fact, the IPCC AR6 report launched in August 2021 states that the time to prevent the earth’s temperature from rising below 2 degrees Celsius is less than a decade away. As one of the top 10 largest emitting countries in the world, Indonesia should be even more ambitious in reducing its emissions.

In addition, in the energy sector in the electricity sub-sector, coal-fired power plants that produce high emissions will still be chosen as a source of power generation even until 2050. However, the reasons for choosing CCS/CCUS technology implementation, both technically and economically, are not explained in detail. It also does not explain the differences in assumptions used between CPOS, TRNS, and LCCP scenarios. The lack of transparency regarding the assumptions used in this document makes it difficult for academics, policy makers, or the general public to study this LTS – LCCR document

IESR considers that the importance of increasing climate ambition is not only to fulfill international agreement commitments but also to realize national economic resilience and mitigate the risk of large costs incurred to fix climate problems in the future. In response to this, IESR compiled a recommendation for the President of the Republic of Indonesia regarding the updating of Indonesia’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) 2021 which can be downloaded as follows IESR Recommendation to President Joko Widodo on Updating NDC – IESR