At its first session, by its decision 5/CP.1, the COP launched a "pilot phase of activities implemented jointly" (AIJ). Under the pilot phase, Parties may implement projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, or enhance removals of greenhouse gases by "sinks", in the territories of other Parties. However, no credits may accrue to any Party for greenhouse gas emission reductions or removals.
Decision 5/CP.1 established a set of criteria to guide AIJ, and encouraged Parties to report on their activities conducted under the pilot phase. Parties must now use the uniform reporting format adopted at COP 3 (see decision 10/CP.3) to prepare these reports. Each year, the secretariat compiles a synthesis of the reports received, which the COP then uses to review progress on the pilot phase on an annual basis.
Decision 5/CP.1 also called on the COP to conduct a "comprehensive review" of the pilot phase in order to take a "conclusive decision" on it by 2000; this review was concluded by COP 5, which decided to continue the pilot phase beyond 2000 (see decision 13/CP.5). Parties agreed that, during the continuation of the pilot phase, the issue of geographical imbalance, in particular the lack of projects in Africa and small island developing States, should be addressed.
The SBSTA and the SBI have joint responsibility for negotiations on AIJ.
A draft revised uniform reporting format prepared by the secretariat was presented to SBSTA/SBI 11 (Oct/Nov 1999). COP 5 (meeting during the same period) invited Parties to propose improvements to the draft by 31 March 2000, and requested the secretariat to prepare a further draft revision, together with a set of guidelines for its use, to be considered by Part I of SBSTA/SBI 13 (Lyon, Sept 2000). At that session the secretariat presented the further draft revised uniform reporting format in document FCCC/SB/2000/6/Add.1.
The deadline for Parties to submit information on their activities under the pilot phase for consideration in the fourth annual synthesis report was 30 June 2000.