Skip to content

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

Last update: June 2021

Ambition gap

Senegalʼs total GHG emissions

excl. LULUCF MtCO₂e/yr

More information about this graph and itʼs underlying data
Download the data and graph as image
Displayed values
Reference year
Reference year
1.5°C emissions level
NDC (conditional)
Ambition gap
  • 1.5°C compatible pathways
  • Middle of the 1.5°C compatible range
  • Current policy projections
  • 1.5°C emissions range
  • Historical emissions

*Net zero emissions excl LULUCF is achieved through deployment of BECCS; other novel CDR is not included in these pathways


Senegal’s 2020 NDC targets a conditional GHG emission reduction of 29.5% below business as usual levels by 2030 (excl. LULUCF), which translates into emissions reductions of 24-59% above 2010 by 2030, or around 28-36 MtCO₂e/yr (excl. LULUCF).1

1 Republic of Senegal. Contribution déterminée au niveau national du Sénégal. (2020).

2 Ministère du Pétrole et des Énergies. Système d’information énergétique (SIE) du Sénégal. (2019).

3 African Development Bank. National Climate Change Profile: Senegal. (2018).

4 Tchanche, B. Energy Supply and Consumption in Senegal. in Sustaining Tomorrow via Innovative Engineering 55–82 (WORLD SCIENTIFIC, 2021). doi:10.1142/9789811228032_0002.

5 IEA. Africa Energy Outlook 2019. (2019).

6 Dieng, M. Face au défi climatique, comment les syndicats peuvent-ils accompagner les efforts du Sénégal dans sa transition énergétique? Equal Times. (2020).

7 Ly, Ibrahima; Faye, Yvonne; Diop, Abdou; Kane, Khoudia; Diop, Kader; Sarr, Bassirou; Diallo, Aissatou; Ndiaye, Saboury; Sarr, Ousmane Fall; Senghor, Mame Satou; Faye, Antoine; Ndour, Abdou; Niasse, Seynabou Diouf; Diedhiou, Abdou Aziz; Diakhate, Adiara Ka, S. ProGREEN Senegal Renewable Energy Assessment. (2021).

8 Ministère de l’Économie des Finances et du Plan. Plan Sénégal Émergent (PSE) Plan d’Actions Prioritaires (2019-2023). (2018).

9 Ministère du Pétrole et des Energies. Lettre de Politique de Développement du Secteur de l’Energie (LPDSE) 2019-2023. (2019).

10 In analysed pathways, the energy and power sector assume already a certain amount of carbon dioxide removal technologies, in this case bioenergy carbon capture and storage (BECCS).

11 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 developed countries, they underestimate the feasible space for such 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.

12 Senegal conditional NDC is provided in Global Warming Potentials (GWP) from the Second Assessment Report (SAR) and equals 27 MtCO₂e/yr or 29.5% below BAU. This translates in 59% emissions reduction above 2010, base year provided in the NDC as reference for the BAU scenario. Baseline year referenced in the NDC for the BAU scenario and subsequent NDC targets are excluding forestry contributions and biomass and total aggregated contribution to the NDC suggested that LULUCF emissions are excluded. We therefore assume that the NDC targets are excluding LULUCF.

13 Historical base year 2010 provided in the NDC differs significantly from the PRIMAP-Hist historical source used in this analysis (around 28%), we there provide a range for the NDC. The upper bound of the NDC is based on an estimated BAU excluding LULUCF scaled to historical dataset excluding LULUCF used in the analysis: PRIMAP-Hist 2019 and in Global Warming Potentials AR4. We apply then the conditional NDC emissions reduction target of -29.5%. The lower bound of the NDC is based on the provided NDC target converted to global warming potentials AR4 using the ratio SAR/AR4 from the PRIMAP-Hist 2019 dataset. See assumptions section.

With international support, Senegal’s domestic emissions pathway will be implemented to close the gap between its fair share level and domestic emissions level. Senegal’s 1.5°C compatible domestic emissions reduction levels in 2030, would be 0-23% below 2010 levels or 18-23 MtCO₂e/yr (excluding LULUCF).

1.5°C compatible pathways show remaining GHG emissions levels of 37% below 2010 levels or around 14 MtCO[₂e/yr by 2050 excluding LULUCF, and have close to zero CO₂ emissions left.11

On the road to net zero emissions, remaining emissions will need to be balanced by negative emissions from carbon dioxide removal approaches such as those in the land sector. For example, shifting away from traditional biomass use in primary energy will steer emissions reductions in the LULUCF sector by reducing deforestation and sustaining land-based sinks.


Key power sector benchmarks

Renewables shares and year of zero emissions power Including the use of BECCS

More information about this graph and itʼs underlying data
Download the data and graph as image
1.5°C aligned targets
Current targets

Under 1.5°C compatible pathways, Senegal’s power mix sees a high uptake of renewable energy (including solar, wind, hydro and modern biomass) from a share of 11% in 2017 to 94–97% by 2030, and a sharp reduction of fossil fuels, mostly oil, from 89% in 2017 to 3-5% by 2030.

Coal and gas have played a minor role in Senegal’s power mix, and in 1.5°C compatible pathways they rapidly phase out, with a shift to 100% renewables by 2040 at the latest.

A zero-emissions power sector is reached by 2035 at the latest, mostly driven by the phase out of oil.10 Transitioning from oil to renewable energy is an opportunity for the country to shift towards a low carbon energy system with additional co-benefits such as job creation and affordable electricity. It is also a major lever to reduce government expenditure on oil imports.2

In contrast to Senegal’s plans to start exploiting its oil and gas reserves, a shift to Senegal’s underexploited renewable energy solar potential would prevent locking in a carbon intensive pathway and the risk of stranded assets, in addition to increasing its energy security as Senegal predominately imports oil for energy consumption.3

In 2018, traditional biomass (fuelwood and charcoal) accounted for 82% of total residential energy consumption (slightly less than half of Senegal’s total final energy consumption). Promoting electric transportation and cooking technologies that run on clean energy would significantly curb household biomass combustion and reduce fossil fuel usage.