Climate Change

Advancing Climate Change Statistics: The Global Set and Its Implementation

Climate change is a pressing global challenge that requires comprehensive data, strategic planning, and international cooperation. In acknowledgment of this critical issue, the fifty-third session of the United Nations Statistical Commission, held in March 2022, introduced the “Global Set of Climate Change Statistics and Indicators.” This framework serves as a foundational resource for countries to develop their own climate change statistics and indicators, tailored to their unique concerns, priorities, and available resources. It is an essential step in the collective effort to combat climate Action and support sustainable development.

The Global Set: Supporting Climate Change Statistics

The Global Set, officially adopted as per decision 53/116, is an essential guide for nations in measuring, monitoring, and understanding climate change. It provides a structured approach to gathering data and indicators necessary for assessing climate Action impacts, adaptation, and mitigation actions. As countries grapple with the complexities of addressing climate Action, the Global Set offers a structured path forward.

A Closer Look at the Global Set

For a more detailed exploration of the Global Set and its components, you can refer to the “Report of the Secretary-General to the 53rd session of the Statistical Commission.” This report, available in all six United Nations languages, includes Annex II, which lists all the indicators within the Global Set, also translated for accessibility.

The indicators encompass a wide range of climate-related data, including temperature changes, greenhouse gas emissions, and various other aspects relevant to climate change. These indicators are pivotal in enabling countries to assess the extent of climate change, its impacts on their region, and the effectiveness of their mitigation and adaptation efforts.

UNSD’s Ongoing Commitment to Climate Action Statistics Following the adoption of the Global Set in 2022, the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD) continues to work closely with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). This ongoing partnership aims to ensure the consistent and strengthened implementation of the Global Set in countries worldwide. UNSD’s support extends to member states’ national statistical offices (NSOs) and national climate policy authorities.

The key objectives of this collaboration are as follows:

  1. Develop national climate change statistical programs.
  2. Strengthen the capacity to monitor climate change impacts, adaptation, and mitigation actions.
  3. Enhance participation in climate-related data collection and the submission of indicators to the UNFCCC, supporting the implementation of the Paris Agreement.
  4. Produce and disseminate SDG Goals climate statistics through dedicated reports, websites, and other channels.
Implementation Guidelines and Self-Assessment Tool

To assist countries in adopting the Global Set effectively, UNSD, in collaboration with expert consultants, has developed Implementation Guidelines and the Climate Action Statistics and Indicators Self-Assessment Tool (CISAT). These invaluable resources were disseminated and extensively discussed during the 9th meeting of the Expert Group on Environment Statistics, held from 25th to 28th October 2022.

The CISAT, in particular, plays a crucial role in helping countries assess their available resources and needs, a critical first step in developing a national climate statistics program. By evaluating the relevance, data availability, and methodological soundness of each indicator, countries can gain a clear understanding of where they stand in the fight against climate change.

Collaboration and Continuity

It is recommended that national statistical offices undertake this self-assessment process in close collaboration with their national climate policy authorities and other relevant stakeholders. This collaborative approach ensures that climate change statistics align with national policies and priorities while striving to enhance international comparability.

The self-assessment structure of CISAT is designed to be as similar as possible to the Framework for the Development of Environment Statistics and Environmental-Economic Accounting (FDES-ESSAT), facilitating the seamless transfer of outputs between these tools.

Guiding the Way Forward – The implementation guidelines accompanying the Global Set play a pivotal role in empowering countries to enhance their climate change statistics and effectively inform national climate policy authorities. These guidelines reference relevant frameworks, methods, guidelines, handbooks, and more, providing invaluable resources for both sides of the collaboration.

By specifying key steps to establish national processes for climate change statistics production, the guidelines help improve data comparability on an international scale. This, in turn, strengthens the connection between statistics and policy-making, enabling countries to more effectively monitor climate change’s evolution, gauge progress in mitigation efforts, and adapt to its adverse effects.

In conclusion, the Global Set of Climate Action Statistics and Indicators, along with the Implementation Guidelines and CISAT, serves as an essential tool in our collective battle against climate change. With its comprehensive approach, international collaboration, and clear guidance, it equips nations with the tools needed to better understand, adapt to, and mitigate the effects of climate change. Together, we can work towards a more sustainable and resilient future.