OECD/IEA Climate Change Expert Group Papers

This series is designed to make available to a wider readership selected papers on climate change issues that have been prepared for the OECD/IEA Climate Change Expert Group (CCXG). The CCXG (formerly called the Annex I Expert Group) is a group of government delegates from OECD and other industrialised countries. The aim of the group is to promote dialogue and enhance understanding on technical issues in the international climate change negotiations. CCXG papers are developed in consultation with experts from a wide range of developed and developing countries, including those participating in CCXG Global Forums.

The full papers are generally available only in English.

The opinions expressed in these papers are the sole responsibility of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the OECD, the IEA or their member countries, or the endorsement of any approach described therein.


GHG Mitigation Actions

MRV Issues and Options

The Bali Action Plan (BAP) language on “measurable, reportable and verifiable” (MRV) greenhouse gas mitigation actions and commitments for a post-2012 climate framework was introduced to apply both to developed countries’ greenhouse gas (GHG) commitments and actions (paragraph 1(b)(i) of the BAP), as well as to “nationally appropriate mitigation actions by developing country Parties in the context of sustainable development, supported and enabled by technology, financing and capacity-building” (paragraph 1(b)(ii)). This paper provides an overview of current efforts to assess if GHG mitigation actions underway in different countries and regions are “measurable, reportable and verifiable”. The paper also assesses how such efforts could be improved, explores MRV options for different types of GHG mitigation actions, and highlights decision points needed to establish a post-2012 framework.

Several different types of GHG mitigation actions and commitments have been proposed for the post-2012 period. Some of these - such as national-level GHG emission limits - are already being used, with countries therefore already gaining experience with implementing, monitoring, reporting (and potentially reviewing or verifying the effects of) such actions/commitments. The extent of this experience varies both by type of action/commitment, as well as by country and sector. In general, Annex I countries have significant experience with monitoring and reporting national emission levels (reflecting their reporting commitments under the UNFCCC and Kyoto Protocol). However, official reporting on other GHG-mitigation actions occurs every few years in Annex I countries and only irregularly in non-Annex I countries. Thus, significant new guidance would be needed if post-2012 MRV provisions were to focus on GHG mitigation actions rather than GHG emission levels.

In deciding a MRV framework, it will be important to consider measurement, reporting and verification issues separately (as for example some non-supported actions may be reported but not verified). A transition process may also be needed for some countries, in terms of what is to be subject to MRV provisions, and how M, R and V are to be carried out.


Keywords: mitigation actions, climate change, measurement, reporting, verification, MRV, greenhouse gas
JEL: G15: Financial Economics / General Financial Markets / International Financial Markets; F53: International Economics / International Relations, National Security, and International Political Economy / International Agreements and Observance; International Organizations; Q56: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Environmental Economics / Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth; Q58: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Environmental Economics / Environmental Economics: Government Policy; Q54: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Environmental Economics / Climate; Natural Disasters and Their Management; Global Warming
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