Fiji Launches Low Emissions Development Strategy

The Fiji Low Emission Development Strategy (LEDS) 2018-2050 is a living document compiled in 2018 to define pathways to achieve low emission development in Fiji until 2050. Fiji is highly vulnerable to climate change due to its position as a Small Island Developing State (SIDS), which leaves the country exposed to sea-level rise, cyclones of increasing intensity, and flooding, among other potential consequences. It is therefore imperative to take ambitious and rapid action to address climate change, through greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions. Through this LEDS, Fiji will continue its climate leadership which, to-date, has included serving as the President of the 23rd Conference of the Parties (COP23) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the ambitious near-term targets Fiji took under its first Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC).

As the central goal of this LEDS, Fiji aims to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050 across all sectors of its economy through pathways defined in this LEDS. To achieve this core objective, the LEDS has elaborated four possible low emission scenarios for Fiji:

  • • A “Business-as-Usual (BAU) Unconditional scenario,” which reflects the implementation of existing and official policies, targets, and technologies that are unconditional in the sense that Fiji would implement and finance them without reliance on external or international financing.
  • • A “BAU Conditional scenario,” which reflects the implementation of existing and official policies, targets, and technologies that are conditional in the sense that Fiji would rely on external or international financing to implement mitigation actions, thus this scenario would have higher ambition than “BAU Unconditional.”
  • • A “High Ambition scenario” projects ambitions beyond those already specified in policies, relying on the adoption of new, more ambitious policies and technologies and availability of additional financing to implement mitigation actions, and achieves significant emission reductions by 2050 compared with the business-as-usual scenarios.
  • • A “Very High Ambition scenario” projects ambitions well beyond those already specified in policies, thus relying on the adoption of new, significantly more ambitious policies and availability of new technologies and additional financing to implement mitigation actions, and in which most sectors achieve net zero or negative emissions, by 2050.

These scenarios were elaborated for each sector, including: electricity and other energy use; land transport; domestic maritime transport; domestic air transport; agriculture, forestry and other land use (AFOLU); and waste. Coastal wetlands (blue carbon) was also considered. The scenarios were then aggregated to build a whole-of-economy emission reductions pathway for each scenario.

Following extensive stakeholder consultations, analysis, and modelling of different scenarios for each sector, the LEDS shows that under the Very High Ambition scenario net zero emissions can be achieved during the year 2041, after which emissions would increasingly be net negative. The most significant mitigation of emissions would result from complete transformation of Fiji’s energy sector to one based on a wide variety of on-grid and off-grid renewable energy generation. This transformation in the energy sector would involve the adoption of clean energy for commercial, industrial, and household use, as well as the conversion of most of Fiji’s land transport systems to electric vehicles. The domestic aviation and maritime sectors will also convert to electricity at a more modest scale, while introducing other measures which will drastically reduce emissions. Under the Very High Ambition scenario, Fiji’s energy sector itself will be virtually GHG emission free by 2050. Similarly, emissions from the waste sector will be reduced to nearly zero due to full methane capture and utilization for organic waste and extensive waste reduction and recycling programs. Fiji is able to ultimately achieve net negative emissions as a result of extensive afforestation measures, reduced deforestation, and increased use of sustainable forest plantations in the AFOLU sector.

The LEDS estimates that Fiji’s emissions would more than double under BAU Unconditional scenario, grow incrementally under the BAU Conditional scenario, drop by nearly 31% under the High Ambition Scenario, and achieve net negative emissions during the year 2041 under the Very High Ambition scenario. See Table A and Figure A below.

Table 1. Total Net Emissions for Fiji under four LEDS scenarios.

(all values in metric tonnes CO2e) Scenario








BAU Unconditional








BAU Conditional








High Ambition








Very High Ambition