The COP, by decision 1/CP.16, decided that developed country Parties should enhance reporting in national
communications (NCs) and submit biennial reports (BRs), which outline progress in achieving emission
reductions and the provision of financial, technology and capacity-building support to non-Annex I Parties,
building on existing reporting and review guidelines, processes and experiences. Decision 1/CP.16 also
established a new process, international assessment and review (IAR), under the Subsidiary Body for
Implementation (SBI) for developed country Parties that aims to promote the comparability of efforts among
all developed country Parties with regard to their quantified economy-wide emission limitation and reduction
targets <<MORE>>. The
detailed guidelines for the preparation of BRs contained in annex I to decision 2/CP.17 were adopted by COP
17 in Durban.
Reporting of biennial reports
Following provisions of decision 2/CP.17 developed country Parties were requested to submit their BR1 to the
secretariat by 1 January 2014 and the second and subsequent BR two years after the due date of a full NC.
They have two options to report information in the BR1: Parties could present the BR1 as an annex to the NC
or as a separate report.
In response to request for guidance on reporting of NC and BR by a number of Parties the secretariat
has analysed the information which is required to be presented in the BR and NC, identified the areas
of overlaps and suggested an approach as to how these overlaps could be avoided. When a Party chooses to
present its BR as an annex to the NC, it may choose to avoid duplication of information on similar topics by
following two approaches: (1) detailed reporting of the information on the similar topics in the NC, and
cross-referencing to summary of this information in the BR or (2) provision of summary information on such
similar topics in the NC and cross-referencing to detailed information being provided in the BR.
Notwithstanding the differences in these two approaches, the BR when presented as an annex to the NC, should
be possible to be read as a stand-alone document and should meet all requirements of the UNFCCC biennial
reporting guidelines for developed country Parties (Annex, decision 2/CP.17).
When a Party chooses to report its BR and NC as separate reports, the reader-friendliness could be
enhanced by indicating which parts are similar in both reports. In any case, provision of complete,
transparent, accurate, comparable and consistent information in the BR and the common tabular format is an
essential reporting requirement.
Biennial reporting common tabular format
The Conference of the Parties, in decision 19/CP.18, requested the UNFCCC secretariat to develop an
electronic reporting application for the common tabular format (BR CTF) for developed country Parties. The BR
CTF application has been released in 2013, for use by Parties to report their first BR CTF of BRs.
The secretariat is continuously improves the BR CTF application taking into account provisions of the
relevant decisions and relevant suggestions by the Parties.
Compilation and synthesis reports
Following the request by the COP (decision 2/CP.17, para 21), the secretariat prepares compilation and synthesis (C&S) reports of the
information provided in the BRs by developed Parties. The report highlights findings on quantified
economy-wide emission reduction targets; progress made towards their achievement, including information on
mitigation actions and their effects, the estimates of emission reductions and removals and the use of units
from market-based mechanisms and LULUCF activities; greenhouse gas (GHG) emission trends and
projections; and the provision of financial, technological and capacity-building support to developing
report of BR2s was presented for consideration at SBI 45, Marrakesh, November 2016.
As outlined in annex II of decision 2/CP.17, the IAR process includes a technical review of
BRs, where relevant in conjunction with the annual GHG inventories, and NCs of developed country Parties,
which will result in an individual review report for each developed country Party. When the BRs are submitted
in the same year as the NCs, the reviews are conducted in conjunction, in-country. When BRs are not
submitted in the same year as the NCs, the reviews are conducted through centralized reviews. The technical
reviews are conducted by an international team of experts from Annex I and non-Annex I Parties, selected from
the Roster of Experts.
BR and NC lead reviewers meetings
In accordance with the “Guidelines for the technical review of information reported
under the Convention related to GHG inventories, BRs and NCs by Parties included in Annex I to the
Convention” included in annex to decision 23/CP.19, the secretariat shall facilitate annual meetings of
the lead reviewers (LRs) for GHG inventories, BRs and NCs. The outcomes of the lead reviewers meetings
should facilitate the work of the LRs in fulfilling their task to ensure consistency in the reviews across
the Parties. LRs shall collectively prepare an annual report to the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and
Technological Advice containing suggestions on how to improve the quality, efficiency and consistency of the