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CGE Greenhouse Gas Inventory Hands-on Training Workshop for the African Region - Building an Inventory Management System - Pretoria, South Africa 18-22 September 2006. Michael Gillenwater. What is an GHG Inventory Program for?. Meet international obligations and expectations

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michael gillenwater

CGE Greenhouse Gas Inventory Hands-on Training Workshopfor the African Region- Building an Inventory Management System -Pretoria, South Africa18-22 September 2006

Michael Gillenwater

what is an ghg inventory program for
What is an GHG Inventory Program for?
  • Meet international obligations and expectations
  • Inform international, national, & local policy making
  • Enhance credibility of national climate policies through timely, transparent, and effective analysis & communication
  • Foster consistent estimation approaches across government & private sector programs
  • Respond to requests for information
  • Champion for high quality & objective inventory information
what is quality
What is quality?
  • Transparency
  • Completeness
  • Comparability
  • Consistency
  • Accuracy

Transparency is the most fundamental. If you do not document, then there is no way to demonstrate any of the other principles have been met.

who cares
Who cares?
  • A wide audience of stakeholders...
    • Decision makers & policy advisors
    • International climate change community
    • Provincial & local agencies
    • The public & interest groups
    • Businesses
    • Scientists
national government
National government
  • Are national inventories verifiable?
  • What are current & projected emissions and removals from key industries?
  • What are the effects of existing or planned policies and measures (including policies that aggravate emissions)?
  • Is there consensus among government agencies and key stakeholders on our emission estimates?
  • What are the relationships between reducing greenhouse gas emissions and other environmental pollutants?
international community
International community
  • What is the your country’s contribution to global emissions and removals?
  • Are your GHG estimates credible and transparent?
  • Is your country meeting its UNFCCC obligations?
businesses ngos
Businesses & NGOs
  • How do we quantify and get credit for activities that reduce emissions or sequester carbon?
  • What activities, industries, companies, or policies have been responsible for significant increases or decreases in GHG emissions or removals?


  • What are the priorities for research and measurement?
  • What are the scientific uncertainties in the emission and sink estimates?

Research & international scientific community

Trading and projects


(Sinks policies)

Domestic emission reduction programs

Inventory Program



Corporate, regional, & other inventories

Interest groups

& the public

Emission projections, climate & economic modeling


inventory management systems should
Inventory management systems should...
  • Ensure inventory processes are in compliance with COP decisions (i.e., Non-Annex I Party National Communications)
  • Define and apply appropriate procedures for collecting, processing, communicating, and archiving inventory data & information
  • Coordinate with relevant ministries, agencies, and other organizations
  • Provide inventory reports regularly
  • Ensure the quality of inventory data
inventory management system
Inventory management system
  • Inventory planning
  • Inventory preparation
  • Inventory management
inventory planning
Inventory planning
  • Establish national inventory agency
  • Assign responsibilities for inventory preparation and management
  • Develop schedule
  • Make arrangements to collect data from statistical agencies, companies, industry associations, etc.
  • Create QA/QC plan
  • Define formal approval process within government
  • Develop review processes
  • Integrate continuous improvement
example u s inventory schedule
Example: U.S. Inventory Schedule

Oct - Nov

Late December

April - September

April 15th

Mid October

Nov - Dec

Jan - Feb


public comments

Respond to



Gather data and prepare

initial estimates

Prepare draft


Expert and



Release for





to UN

inventory preparation
Inventory preparation
  • Identify key categories
  • Select methods and emission factors (e.g., GPG decision trees)
  • Collect activity data
  • Manage recalculations
  • Implement QA/QC plan
    • Basic checks should be completed on entire inventory (Tier 1) (see GPG Ch. 8)
    • More in-depth investigations into key sources (Tier 2)
  • Documentation
key categories
Key categories
  • A key category has a significant influence on a country’s total inventory in terms of level or trend in emissions (GPG, Ch.7)
  • A key category may also be determined through a qualitative assessment.
  • A key category is one that is prioritized within the national inventory system
  • In general, countries should focus on key categories for resources and improvements
inventory management
Inventory management
  • Implement inventory review processes (e.g., expert review, public review)
  • Obtain formal approval of final results and report within government
  • Submit report to UNFCCC
  • Make inventory information available to stakeholders and respond to information requests
  • Archive all documentation and results
  • Continuous improvement feedback
  • Uncertainty analysis is a subjective exercise, as it relies to a large extent on expert judgment
  • Therefore, it is not a valid basis to compare inventories between countries
  • Uncertainty analysis should be used as a way to investigate the quality of your inventory data and identify ways to improve data quality
  • You achieve by communicating with data suppliers (e.g., statistical agencies)

Uncertainty investigations should be integrated within your QA/QC plan!

  • IPCC Guidelines
    • Revised 1996 IPCC Guidelines
    • IPCC Good Practice Guidance
    • New 2006 IPCC Guidelines
  • UNFCCC reporting guidelines
  • IPCC Emission Factor Database (EFDB)
  • IPCC software
  • NCSP booklet on "Managing the GHG inventories process (March 2005)
other resources
Other resources…
  • Inventory reports from other Parties

UNFCCC website/GHG Data

  • Inventory related reports from other Parties
  • GHG Inventory Experts Network
closing remarks
Closing remarks…
  • A greenhouse gas inventory is more than just a report. It should be viewed as an broader analytical program.
  • A “cookbook” approach to developing a GHG inventory is not practical. There will always be a large and essential need for expert judgment at all levels of the process.
  • A well constructed inventory should include enough documentation to allow readers to understand the underlying assumptions and to reconstruct the calculations.
please feel free to email me in the future michael gillenwater gillenwater@alum mit edu

Please feel free to email me in the future:Michael

– Thank you –

emission inventory basics
Emission Inventory Basics
  • An emission inventory is an accounting of the amount of air pollutants discharged into the atmosphere. It is generally characterized by the following factors:
    • The chemical or physical identity of the pollutants included
    • The geographic area covered
    • The institutional entities covered
    • The time period over which emissions are estimated
    • The types of activities that cause emissions
inventory agency responsibilities
Inventory Agency Responsibilities
  • A single national entity to be responsible for the overall inventory
  • Arrangements with collaborating entities that contribute data, research, estimate emissions or provide expert reviews
  • Define legal authority to collect and disseminate data necessary for the preparation of the inventory
  • Ensure inventory processes are in compliance with COP decisions
  • Define and apply procedures for collecting data, preparing inventory, communicating results, submitting report, and archiving
  • Liaise among government departments, national agencies,
  • Ensure the implementation of QA/QC
  • Develop high quality inventory at regular intervals (e.g., annually, every 2-4 years, etc).
    • Resources are focused on the most significant emission sources in the country