Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI)

More Background on the SBI

SBI stands for Subsidiary Body for Implementation, and its work has been at the heart of all implementation issues under the Convention, the Kyoto Protocol, and more recently the Paris Agreement. In this respect, its agenda is shaped around the key building blocks of implementation of all these treaties and instruments: transparency, mitigation, adaptation, finance, technology and capacity-building, and aims at enhancing the ambition of Parties on all aspects of its agenda.

As of 2014, the SBI increasingly focused towards advancing the MRV issues as outlined in the Cancun framework with the launch of two processes, the international assessment and review process (IAR) and the international consultations and analysis process (ICA) that are conducted under the SBI. The IAR aim is to promote the comparability of efforts among all developed country Parties with regard to their quantified economy-wide emission limitation and reduction targets. The international consultations and analysis process (ICA) aim is to increase the transparency of mitigation actions, their effects and capacity building needs, in a manner that is non-intrusive, non-punitive and respectful of the national sovereignty.

In addition, the SBI is considering annually GHG emission trends of developed countries and periodically reports of policies and actions by both, developed and developing countries that allows to keeping track of global emissions, mitigation and adaptation policies and actions and actions in the area of financial, technology and capacity building support, research and systematic observation and education, training and public awareness. By providing guidance to the Consultative Group of Experts on non-Annex I national communications, SBI is contributing to strengthening capacity of developing countries to assess their implementation of the requirements under the UNFCCC and report thereof. On mitigation, the SBI is engaged in elaborating guidance for Parties and other stakeholders on how to harness the benefits from more than 10-year experience in implementing the mechanisms of the Kyoto Protocol, namely Joint Implementation and Clean Development mechanisms to shape these mechanisms and also the mechanisms under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement towards greater efficiency and ensuring real and measurable emission reductions. The SBI is also looking at the institutional and finance aspects of actions taken by developing countries to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation with a view to fully utilize the available mitigation potential and bring multiple benefits to people and economies of these countries.

On adaptation, finance and technology transfer, the focus is on finding the best way for Parties to provide relevant guidance on stronger action on the ground in the context of related agenda items in the SBI agenda while making the best use of the increasing role of the specialized bodies and institutions that have been created in Cancun and Durban and operationalized in Doha to deal with the relevant issues. While the technical discussions under these traditional items are now being taken up under the constituted bodies, the SBI has the responsibility of maintaining the political momentum and ensuring transparency on decision-making on these matters. The SBI is also looking at how the Global Environment Facility provides funding to climate technology development and transfer activities by monitoring the implementation of the Poznan strategic programme, which is supporting countries to undertake technology needs assessments, develop technology pilot projects and implement hundreds of climate projects with objectives related to climate technologies.

On adaptation, the SBI is monitoring the implementation of the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) work programme, which includes, among other things, national adaptation programmes of action (NAPAs). Through their NAPAs, the LDCs identify priority activities that respond to their urgent and immediate adaptation needs. The LDCs are also supported by a Least Developed Countries Expert Group (LEG) that provides technical support and advice, and the SBI regularly monitors and reviews its work, to ensure that the needs of such countries are adequately addressed. The SBI is also assessing progress made in the process to formulate and implement national adaptation plans (NAPs). The process was established to enable Parties to formulate and implement NAPs as a means of identifying medium- and long-term adaptation needs and developing and implementing strategies and programmes to address those needs.

The SBI works together with the SBSTA on cross-cutting issues that are within the areas of competence of both bodies. These include the vulnerability and adaptation of developing countries to climate change and response measures, issues in relation to the Technology Mechanism, the Adaptation Committee and the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage associated with Climate Change Impacts. Through the work of these bodies, the SBI and SBSTA help to foster international co-operation and elevate global responses by setting out options and directions for well-designed policies and actions that can work in addressing both, climate change mitigation and adaptation for the benefits of all people.

On capacity-building, the SBI regularly monitors and reviews progress on the implementation of the frameworks for capacity-building in developing countries and countries with economies in transition (EITs), the two frameworks launched in 2001 at COP 7 to guide capacity-building. The frameworks aim to enable these countries to implement the provisions of the Convention and effectively participate in the Kyoto Protocol process. In 2005, Parties to the Kyoto Protocol decided that the two frameworks are also applicable to the implementation of the Protocol, and the SBI was then mandated to monitor and review progress on the implementation of the frameworks under the Kyoto Protocol as well. To enhance the monitoring and review of the effectiveness of capacity-building within the intergovernmental climate change process, the Durban Forum on capacity-building, designed in 2011, is an annual, in-session event organized under the auspices of the SBI that brings together stakeholders involved in building the capacity of developing countries to mitigate and adapt to climate change. More recently, the Paris Committee on Capacity-building (PCCB), created in 2015, meets annually in conjunction with the spring sessions of the SBI and addresses current and emerging gaps and needs in implementing and further enhancing capacity-building in developing countries. The PCCB and the Durban Forum report on their work to the COP through the SBI at the sessions of the SBI held in conjunction with sessions of the COP.

The SBI also monitors and review the implementation of the Doha Work Programme on education, training and public awareness, and hosts the annual Dialogue on Action for Climate Empowerment (ACE). Discussions under the SBI on this matter outline how Parties view the close links between ACE and other items being discussed in the UNFCCC process by encouraging Parties to promote the systematic integration of gender-sensitive and participatory education, training, public awareness, public participation, public access to information, and regional and international cooperation into all mitigation and adaptation activities implemented under the Convention, as well as under the Paris Agreement.

The SBI is the body that considers the biennial work progammes for the secretariat, which provide the strategic direction on how the secretariat can best serve the Parties and the UNFCCC process towards greater ambition of climate change action and support that is fully commensurate with the objectives of the convention, the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement.

The SBI and SBSTA are also engaged in showcasing climate action by Parties and non-Party stakeholders in the context of the Technical Examination Process (TEP). The TEP for adaptation seeks to identify concrete opportunities for strengthening resilience, reducing vulnerabilities, and increasing the understanding and implementation of adaptation actions. The TEP for mitigation explores high-potential mitigation policies, practices and technologies with significant sustainable development co-benefits that could increase the mitigation ambition of pre-2020 climate action.


Secretariat  contact for SBI coordination.

Document type
  • Initial Briefing on the preparations for the UNFCCC 2020-2021 Budget - Introductory remarks by UNFCCC Executive Secretary
    Briefing notes
    Full library record
  • Budget briefing February 2019
    Full library record
  • FCCC/CP/2018/INF.3
    List of participants
    Lists of participants
    Full library record
  • SBI Chair's speaking notes COP plenary 8 December
    Non-official session documents
    Full library record
  • SBI49.DT.i7.4
    Development of modalities and procedures for the operation and use of a public registry referred to in Article 7, paragraph 12, of the Paris Agreement
    Draft negotiating texts
    Full library record
  • SB49.DT.SBI.i11_SBSTA.i3_SBI.i12_v3
    Draft decision text on matters referred to in paragraphs 41, 42 and 45 of decision 1/CP.21.
    Draft negotiating texts
    Full library record
  • SBI19_DT_i14av2
    Scope of and modalities for the periodic assessment referred to in paragraph 69 of decision 1/CP.21
    Draft negotiating texts
    Full library record
  • SBI 49 Agenda
    Agendas and annotations
    Full library record
  • SBI49.DT.i5.1
    Options Common Time Frames
    Informal notes
    Full library record
  • FCCC/SBI/2018/L.28
    Paris Agreement work programme. Draft conclusions proposed by the Chair
    Draft conclusions
    Full library record
Document type
  • Report on the workshop on financing and use of the clean development mechanism by international climate finance institutions
    Full library record