Responsibility of Developing Countries
Only developed countries, which are the main emitters of greenhouse gas, have climate change responsibilities and are mandated to create and submit GHG inventories periodically. However, recently, developing countries have achieved rapid growth, and the emissions of greenhouse gas caused thereby have significantly increased, which means developing countries will also have to start submitting GHG inventories. It is thus necessary for each country to urgently asses its national circumstances.
Since the Bali Action Plan, which states that Non-Annex I Parties should also take nationally appropriate mitigation actions in a measurable, reportable and verifiable manner, was agreed on at COP13 in 2007, the importance of greenhouse gas inventories has been recognised as a tool for supporting the developing mitigation measures and to verify their efficacy. From the Cancun Agreements, Non-Annex I Parties shall make the biennial update report every 2 years (see Table 11.1).
Table 11.1 Biennial update report, Decision 1/CP.16—Cancun Agreements (Reference: UNFCCC (2011))
The Role of Greenhouse Gas Inventory Office of Japan (GIO)
The Greenhouse Gas Inventory Office of Japan (GIO) was established in July 2002 in the Center for Global Environmental Research (CGER) at the National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES). Its mission is to compile the annual national greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory of Japan; to implement various GHG inventoryrelated tasks and activities, such as providing support and assistance for the technical review of the national GHG inventory of Japan for the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol; and to contribute to capacity building of Asian countries in developing and improving their GHG inventories (see Table 11.2).
The “National GHGs Inventory Report of JAPAN (NIR)” and “GHGs Emissions Data of Japan”, both of which are published annually, as well as information on and reports from the “Workshop on Greenhouse Gas Inventories in Asia (WGIA)” are available and posted on the GIO website.
Additionally, some members join the process of the technical review of other parties for the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol in some countries such as Germany as a member of the expert review team (ERT).
One Part of the National System
The Ministry of the Environment of Japan (MoEJ), with the cooperation of relevant ministries, agencies and organisations, prepares Japan's national inventory and compiles supplementary information required under Article 7.1, which is annually submitted to the Conference of the Parties through the UNFCCC Secretariat in accordance with the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol.
The MoEJ takes overall responsibility for the national inventory and therefore does its utmost to improve the quality thereof. The MoEJ organised the “Committee for the Greenhouse Gas Emission Estimation Methods” in order to integrate the latest scientific knowledge into the inventory and to ensure it reflects recent
Table 11.2 List of tasks of Greenhouse Gas Inventory Office of Japan (GIO)
international provisions. The estimation of GHG emissions and removals, the key category analysis and the uncertainty assessment are then carried out by taking the decisions of the committee into consideration. Substantial activities, such as the estimation of emissions and removals and the preparation of Common Reporting Formats (CRF) and National Inventory Report (NIR), are performed by the Greenhouse Gas Inventory Office of Japan (GIO), which belongs to the Center for Global Environmental Research of the National Institute for Environmental Studies. The relevant ministries, agencies and organisations provide the GIO with the appropriate data (e.g. activity data, emission factors, GHG emissions and removals) through compiling various statistics and also provide relevant information on supplementary information required under Article 7.1. They then check and verify the inventories (i.e. CRF, NIR), including the spreadsheets that are actually utilised for the estimation, as a part of the quality control (QC) activities.
The checked and verified inventories determined as Japan's official values are then published by the MoEJ and submitted to the UNFCCC Secretariat by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Reference: Ministry of the Environment, Japan and Greenhouse Gas Inventory Office of Japan (GIO), CGER, NIES (2014)).
Figure 11.1 shows the overall institutional arrangement for Japan's inventory preparation.