Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry

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6.4.3. Frequency and Period of Reporting

Currently, Annex I Parties report their national inventories annually. Much of the discussion below is also relevant to the accounting for national inventories. The frequency and period of reporting for projects has not been defined under the Protocol. For projects, the frequency of reporting could be linked to:

  • Recognition of carbon credits, which could be annual
  • The duration of the commitment period (currently 5 years for quantified emission limitation or reduction commitment, but could be different for projects)
  • Other factors, such as duration of the project, and the adjustment of credits based on the period of reporting.

For practical purposes, Chapter 5 assumes that the reporting period equals the project lifetime. For example, if it takes 20 years to complete a reforestation project, net carbon sequestered from the project could continue to be monitored for 20 years for crediting emissions reductions. Furthermore, if annual inventories are required for assessing compliance for a commitment period, there may be a problem if project information is not available until some time after the end of a commitment period. This problem applies equally to emissions reductions for projects in other sectors. Hence, two reporting issues arise: How is the endpoint of a project defined? What is an appropriate monitoring frequency? These reporting issues are also related to the question of permanence.

6.5. Options for Improving the Revised 1996 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gases under the Kyoto Protocol

Depending on the decisions made by Parties, improvements to the Guidelines likely will be needed to estimate and report emissions and removals of GHGs, stock changes, and associated activities under Articles 3.3, 3.4, 3.7, 6, and 12. This section proposes options to improve the Guidelines in relation to the verifiability and transparency of reported data.

For reporting of changes in carbon stocks and GHG fluxes under the Protocol, the comprehensive approach of the Reference Manual covers most of the relevant issues, including definitions. The accounting methods and default data in the Workbook, however, are limited to two carbon pools; the Workbook and the Reporting Instructions are likely to need further work if more explicit methods and definitions are required under the Protocol. The generic areas for possible improvement include the following:

  • Reporting of defined activities and changes in carbon stocks associated with them
  • Methods of accounting for carbon stocks not currently provided in the Guidelines
  • Methods of data collection and evaluation of data quality (uncertainties)
  • Methods to integrate changes in aboveground biomass, soil carbon, and other pools and reporting of these changes spatially (geo-referencing) and by activity
  • Reporting for projects that takes into account baselines, system boundaries, leakage, and additionality, as well as socioeconomic and non-GHG environmental impacts
  • Reporting tables for inventories and projects that differentiate between the base year, 1990, and the commitment period. Projects that qualify under Article 6, and potentially those under Article 12, would have to be distinguished, reported, and treated differently in the national GHG inventories of Annex I and non-Annex I Parties.

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