The number and coverage of climate change mitigation policies have increased in the past twenty years, but important policy adoption gaps remain. To analyse sectoral climate policy in the G20 over time (2000–2019), we compiled a dataset of climate change mitigation-relevant policies and identified 50 key policy options that constitute a comprehensive sectoral climate policy package.
Approximately half of these policy options are not widely adopted. Adoption is particularly low for policies that aim to: phase out coal and oil and mandate energy reductions in electricity and heat supply; reduce industrial process emissions and incentivise fuel switch in industry; design urban planning strategies for retrofits; and support the use of renewable energy for cooking and heating/cooling purposes in buildings.
Policies to remove fossil fuel subsidies and support carbon dioxide removal also need substantial improvement. However, many policy adoption gaps exist as the coverage of at least one policy option could be improved in each sector. Policy adoption gaps leave at least one-tenth of the G20’s emissions completely uncovered. Filling these gaps is fundamental to realize the full mitigation potential of existing policy options and to advance the transition towards global net zero greenhouse gas emissions.