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Current situation

What is Bangladeshʼs pathway to limit global warming to 1.5°C?

Emissions profile

Since 1993 Bangladesh has steadily increased its total emissions, with an increase of over 30% since 2011 (excluding LULUCF). The energy sector is the single largest source of CO₂ emissions. Emissions from the agriculture and waste sectors were 39% in 2019, and primarily consisted of CH₄ and N₂O. Bangladesh’s agricultural emissions are mainly from rice cultivation, digestive processes of animals, manure, and poultry litter management.6 Emissions from agriculture accounted for 28% of total emissions in 2018 which is an improvement from the 2011, which was 35%. The decline is primarily due to the decline in GDP share of agriculture from 17% to 13% during this period.7

Bangladesh’s power sectors accounts for half of total energy-related CO₂ emissions. Natural gas is the major fuel used in electricity generation in Bangladesh accounts for 75% of generation, and despite continued emphasis from the country on renewable energy use, the share natural gas in its power sector has increased steadily.8

Uncertainties remain around Bangladesh’s LULUCF emissions. However, its third national communications reported the sector as a source of emissions in 2012, contributing to around 5% of total GHG emissions in that year.9

1 Ministry of Environment and Forests, G. of B. Second national Communication of Bangladesh to UNFCCC. (2012).

2 FAOSTAT. Land use Total Data Bangladesh. (2021).

3 Gerretsen, I. Bangladesh scraps nine coal power plants as overseas finance dries up. Climate Home News. (2021).

4 Reuters. Bangladesh looks to cut future coal use as costs rise, Energy News, ET EnergyWorld. Energyworld.com. (2020).

5 Dhaka Tribune. State Minister: 40% of Bangladesh’s power will come from renewables by 2041 | Dhaka Tribune. (2021).

6 USAID. Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Sector Bangladesh. (2012).

7 Statista. Bangladesh – share of economic sectors in the gross domestic product 2019. (2020).

8 Governement of Bangladesh. Bangladesh Year Book-Chapter 6 Energy. (2019).

9 Ministry of Environment, F. and C. C. of B. Third National Communication of Bangladesh to UNFCCC. (2018).

10 International Trade Administration. Bangladesh – Power and Energy. (2020).

11 Bangladesh Planning Commission. Making Vision 2041 a Reality PERSPECTIVE PLAN OF BANGLADESH 2021-2041 (2020).

12 Cabraal, A., Ward, W. A., Bogach, V. S. & Jain, A. Living in the light: The Bangladesh solar home systems story. (2021).

13 Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change. Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) 2021: Bangladesh (Updated). (2021).

14 Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh. Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC)- Bangladesh. (2015).

15 SREDA. Energy Efficiency and Conservation Master Plan in Bangladesh. (2015).

16 IEA. Bangladesh – Countries & Regions. (2019).

17 Worldometer. Bangladesh Natural Gas Reserves, Production and Consumption Statistics. (2017).

18 SAARC. SAARC Energy Outlook 2030. (2018).

19 IEA. World Energy Balances 2019 (OECD and Selected Emerging Economies). (2019).

20 Huda, A. S. N., Mekhilef, S. & Ahsan, A. Biomass energy in Bangladesh: Current status and prospects. Renew. Sustain. Energy Rev. 30, 504–517 (2014).

21 Khan, M. S. et al. Prospect Of Biofuel In Bangladesh: Bioethanol And Biodiesel Production At Local Condition. in oint Conference International Conference on Environmental Microbiology and Microbial Ecology & International Conference on Ecology and Ecosystems (2017).

22 Rouf, M. A. & Haque, M. N. Role of Renewable Energy (Biogas and Improved Cook Stoves) for Creation of Green Jobs in Bangladesh. (2008).

23 Fisher, M. Introduction of Nuclear Power in Bangladesh Underway with IAEA Assistance. (2018).

24 BP. Statistical Review of World Energy 2020. (2020).

25 Ministry of Power, E. and M. R. Power System Master Plan. (2016).

26 Timilsina, G. R., Pargal, S., Tsigas, M. & Sahin, S. How Much Would Bangladesh Gain from the Removal of Subsidies on Electricity and Natural Gas? (2018)..

27 Salam, R. A. et al. An Overview on Energy and Development of Energy Integration in Major South Asian Countries: The Building Sector. Energies 2020, Vol. 13, Page 5776 13, 5776 (2020).

28 Bangladesh National Building Code (BNBC) 2020. (2020).

29 Green Finance Platform. Bangladesh’s Green Transformation Fund (GTF) | Green Finance Platform. (2019).

30 Daily Sun. National Budget Speech 2021-2022 (full text) | Online Version. (2021).

31 Climate Analytics. Decarbonising South and South East Asia: Shifting energy supply in South Asia and South East Asia to non-fossil fuel-based energy systems in line with the Paris Agreement long-term temperature goal and achievement of Sustainable Development Goals. (2019).

32 While global cost-effective pathways assessed by the IPCC Special Report 1.5°C provide useful guidance for an upper-limit of emissions trajectories for countries, they underestimate the feasible space for developed countries to reach net zero earlier. The current generation of models tend to depend strongly on land-use sinks outside of currently developed countries and include fossil fuel use well beyond the time at which these could be phased out, compared to what is understood from bottom-up approaches. The scientific teams which provide these global pathways constantly improve the technologies represented in their models – and novel CDR technologies are now being included in new studies focused on deep mitigation scenarios meeting the Paris Agreement. A wide assessment database of these new scenarios is not yet available; thus, we rely on available scenarios which focus particularly on BECCS as a net-negative emission technology. Accordingly, we do not yet consider land-sector emissions (LULUCF) and other CDR approaches.

33 Global cost-effective pathways assessed by the IPCC Special Report 1.5°C tend to include fossil fuel use well beyond the time at which these could be phased out, compared to what is understood from bottom-up approaches, and often rely on rather conservative assumptions in the development of renewable energy technologies. This tends to result in greater reliance on technological CDR than if a faster transition to renewables were achieved. The scenarios available at the time of this analysis focus particularly on BECCS as a net-negative emission technology, and our downscaling methods do not yet take national BECCS potentials into account.

34 At the regional level, models suggest coal-fired power to be phased out in South Asian countries by 2040.31

Bangladeshʼs current GHG emissions

MtCO₂e/yr

Displayed values

By sector

  • Industry (energy use)
  • Transport
  • Buildings
  • Other
  • Fugitive emissions
  • Agriculture
  • Waste
  • Industry (processes)
  • LULUCF
Energy (48%)0

By gas

  • CO₂
  • CH₄
  • N₂O
  • Other
00

Sectors by gas

Energy
096%0
Agriculture
078%0
Industry (processes)
099%0

Energy system

Bangladesh’s primary energy is dominated by natural gas, accounting for 55% of total supply. Natural gas contributed to around 75% of electricity generation in 2018. While coal currently has an insignificant share of power energy mix generation (less than 1%), in 2021 Bangladesh scrapped 90% of its planned coal expansion.10 This was driven by the rising costs of coal import and increased price per generation unit.3,4 This is the right step forward, as increasing coal capacity puts the country at risk to lock itself on a carbon intensive pathway with high costs and the potential for stranded assets.

Bangladesh is one of the fastest growing economies in South Asia and aspires to be a developed country by 2041.11 As energy and electricity play a key role in sustained economic growth and infrastructure development, this will increase future energy and electricity demand significantly. A strengthened policy framework will be necessary to achieve transformational change in the energy sector by abandoning fossil fuels.

Bangladesh is very vulnerable to climate change, as it is repeatedly hit by extreme weather events like cyclones which severely damage energy infrastructure. A diversified, decentralised, and climate-resilient power system could reduce the negative impacts of climate change on power sector. Bangladesh has the largest off-grid solar power programme in the world, which enables 20 million homes (16% of rural population) access to electricity.12

Targets and commitments

Economy-wide targets

Target type

Baseline scenario target

NDC target

Unconditional NDC Target:

  • 6.73% below BAU levels by 2030 (equivalent to an increase of emissions of 126% above 2012 levels. Updated NDC of Bangladesh covers all sectors (energy, IPPU, agriculture and waste). 95% of unconditional emission reduction will be from the energy sector.13

Conditional NDC Target:

  • 15% below BAU by 2030. Bangladesh NDC covers only the power, transport and industry sectors.13
  • Additional measures (see sectoral targets).

Long-term target

  • As of April 2022, Bangladesh has not submitted a long-term strategy to the UNFCCC.

Sector coverage

EnergyIndustryWasteAgriculture

Greenhouse gas coverage

CO₂CH₄PFCsNF₃HFCsN₂OSF₆

Sectoral targets

Power

  • Implementation of renewable energy project of 911.8 MW (solar grid connected 581 MW, solar mini grid 56.8 MW, wind 149 MW, biomass 20 MW, biogas 5 MW, new hydro 100 MW).13
  • 100% of new coal-based power plants to use super-critical technology by 2030.
  • 0.400 GW of wind capacity installed by 2030.
  • 1 GW of utility-scale solar power installed by 2030.
  • 40% renewable energy target in the power mix by 2041.5
  • Installation of new combined cycle gas based power plant (3208 MW).13
  • Efficiency improvement of existing gas Turbine power plant (570 MW).13

Waste

  • 50% of the managed waste fraction is diverted from landfill to composting by 2030.14
  • 70% of landfill gas captured and used for electricity generation by 2030.14
  • Establishment of waste to energy plant and incineration plant.13

LULUCF

  • Increase tree cover from 22.37% (2014) to 24%.13
  • Afforestation and reforestation in the coastal areas, islands and degraded areas – 150,000 ha.13
  • Restore the deforested forests – 137,800 ha at the hill and plain land sal forest.13
  • Restore the degraded forests – 200,000 ha at the hill and plain land sal forest.13

Transport

  • Up to around a 10% shift in passenger traffic from road to rail by 2030, compared to the business as usual.13
  • 15% improvement in the efficiency of vehicles due to more efficient running by 2030.

Industry

  • 10% energy efficiency in the industry sub-sector compared to the business as usual by 2030.15

Buildings

  • A 70% market share of improved biomass cookstoves, to reach 20 million households in 2030.
  • 40% market share of improved gas cookstoves by 2030.
  • 10% market switch from biomass to LPG for cooking compared to the business as usual by 2030.
  • 25% reduction of overall energy consumption of the commercial sector compared to the business as usual by 2030.
  • Use energy-efficient appliances in households and commercial buildings (achieve 5% and 12% reduction in emission respectively).13
  • Reduction of ozone depleting gases (HCFCs) use in air conditioning as per Montreal protocol targets by 2025.13

Agriculture

  • 50% reduction in draft animals compared to the business as usual by 2030.14
  • 35% increase in organic fertilizer share compared to the business as usual by 2030.14
  • 20% of all rice cultivation uses alternate wetting and drying irrigation by 2030.14
  • Upscaling alternate wetting and drying (AWD) in dry season rice field in 50,000 ha of crop lands.13
  • Rice varietal improvement for 1,111,000 ha crop lands.13

Footnotes