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Mauritius

Core analysis conducted November 2023.

 

Overall NDC Equity Score

Average

+

Emissions Reductions

Average

The NDC meets basic expectations in emissions reductions, but is still not ambitious enough.

+

Gender Justice

Aspiring

The NDC makes a strong effort to achieve gender mainstreaming, but fails to outline specific measures aimed at integrating gender into actions across all sectors.

+

Youth Inclusion

Insufficient

The NDC made an effort to include young people in the NDC development process, but it does not provide measures for sustained inclusion or specific indicators for youth-centered actions.

Summary

Mauritius is a small island and developing state (SIDS) with hundreds of endemic species as a biodiversity hotspot, considered very vulnerable to climate change. The country faces climate shocks such as intense cyclones, abnormal tidal surges, prolonged droughts, flash floods, increase of sea surface temperature, and sea level rise. Despite its vulnerability, the island has had one of the biggest increases in GHG emissions, with a 217% increase since 1990 due to modernisation and shifts in economic pillars. Though the country’s comparative emissions are much smaller than the world, it’s critical the country leads by example in minimizing its contributions long-term. As such, Mauritius confirms its commitment to reduce emissions 40% by 2030 and up to 65% with international support in the Land-Use and Forest Cover (LULUCF) and Agriculture sectors that are the main source of the country’s emissions. In addition to mitigation efforts, Mauritius adopted a National Climate Change Adaptation Policy Framework in 2021, with a focus on nature-based solutions for adaptation and policy for resilience-building in partnership with local communities.

 

On gender mainstreaming, Mauritius’s NDC indicates the inclusion of gender-responsive consultation measures via the “ministry responsible for gender equality,” acknowledges the critical work of the National Women’s Entrepreneur Council at reducing gender-related poverty, and plans for gender-responsive adaptation planning. Further, it spotlights efforts to commission studies on gender and climate change as well as gender-specific awareness-raising campaigns. Though the NDC references gender as a “cross-cutting issue” it fails to outline specific measures aimed at integrating gender into actions across all sectors, increasing women’s participation in climate decision-making roles, providing gender-disaggregated data that can inform gender-responsive measures, or identifying the ratio of women’s meaningful inclusion in consultations.

 

On youth inclusion, Mauritius’s NDC very light on details. Although young people are highly engaged in grassroots climate-activism and climate advocacy, there is no record at ministry-level regarding their efforts. The NDC superficially mentions youth in ‘Other contextual aspirations and priorities acknowledged when joining the Paris Agreement’ but lacks mention of any formal structure for recording, monitoring, and supporting youth participation and inclusion in climate actions and advocacy. Therefore, much consideration and emphasis should be put in youth inclusion as key stakeholders in climate decisions through consultation processes as the future lies in today’s youth hands.

 

The authors feel that Mauritius believes that setting out the climate policy aspirations and strategies well in advance will help provide a clear sense of direction, minimize any negative disruptions to the economy and workforce and keep Mauritius competitive in a carbon-constrained world.

Highlights

  • High commitment to reduce GHG emissions despite low responsibility.
  • Commitment to 60% renewable energy use and total phase out of use of coal by 2030.
  • Conducted a consultation process with civil society.
  • Gender-responsive adaptation planning initiative will be a country priority, acknowledging the need to address high poverty rates among women.
  • Acknowledges plans to continuously engage with stakeholders (including businesses, civil society, youths, students, women, senior citizens and the research community) to co-create and co-deliver solutions, amplify awareness, and encourage a whole-of-nation effort to address climate change.

Lowlights

  • No defined strategy and action plan for integration of youth in climate change decisions.
  • Lacks clarity on participation levels of women and young people in consultative efforts.
  • Does not acknowledge young people's and women's' disproportionate vulnerability to climate change.
  • No defined strategy to increase gender balance and women representation at key decision-making roles in all sectors related to climate change.

Key Recommendations

Mauritius’s NDC superficially mentions youth as part of the “other” category rather than as important agents of change who have potential to participate in a  green economy as part of the Just Transition and are more vulnerable to climate impacts. On gender, the NDC is gender-sensitive but not gender-responsive as it lacks well-defined strategies

for gender-mainstreaming in actions across all sectors impacted by climate change (agriculture, transport, energy, industries and processes, education, health, etc). The following are key recommendations for the improvement of future NDCs and other national climate plans:


For Gender Mainstreaming

  • Define clear strategies for increasing women's leadership and representation in key decision-making roles related to all sectors of climate-change (not just adaptation)..
  • Include women's organizations and leaders in consultations, providing clear indicators and measures tied to their suggestions in the NDC.
  • Include findings on gender-disaggregated data.
  • Highlight women's entrepreneurship in preserving indigenous/traditional knowledge and poverty alleviation against the backdrop of climate change, outlining actions on how the government can support these efforts..

For Youth Inclusion

  • Record youth-climate activities country-wide and include measures in the NDC for strengthening their capacity and resources to continue implementing solution.
  • Include young people in NDC consultations, providing clear indicators and measures tied to their suggestions in the NDC.
  • Create a formal youth-inclusive structure, such as a Youth Climate Council, that can support long-term youth inclusive in climate policy spaces.

NDC Ambassador - Author

Anusha Seechurn

Anusha Seechurn, from the island of Mauritius, is a professional with eight years of experience in the field of climate change and sustainability. Anusha is currently employed as a Sustainability Coordinate for Initiatives and Impact at the number one financial institution in Mauritius. She is a former Assistant Research Scientist from a highly-esteemed Agricultural research institute, where her main task was to carry out field and laboratory experiments and work closely with farmers and legislative bodies to provide scientific-based evidence to devise national policies and strategic plan for AFOLU sector. As such, she is the first young person to have written the Nationally Determined Contributions for the same sector with her colleagues in 2021. She is a former Educator in Agriculture for three years, in a renowned secondary school with focus to educate and include young students of 11 to 18 years, from low-income backgrounds into climate-smart agricultural practices and agripreneurship avenues. Anusha was one of the pioneers to obtain a master’s degree in Climate Change and Sustainable Development from the University of Mauritius. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Agriculture with a specialization in Land and Water Management. For 12 years now, she is an active national, regional and global youth leader and volunteer in the climate and sustainability spaces. She is often called to be a speaker and resource person such as for the Conferences of Youth, Climate Justice Conference, YALI Climate Conference, Commonwealth, African podcasts, YALDA, and YOUNGO. She was an in-person YALI RLC SA fellow in Civic Leadership from University of South Africa, in Pretoria. She has occupied key leadership roles, including a Coordinator of Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) chapter, and she is the former contact point for the Nationally Determined Contributions Working Group of YOUNGO UNFCCC. She is a Mandela Washington Fellow Alumna for Leadership in Public Management from the Ivy-League Cornell University  in New York USA. Anusha has been selected to represent voices of youth of Mauritius and SIDS at the COP 28, for the International Youth Climate Development Programme by the COP 28 Presidency.

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