Guidelines under Articles 5, 7 and 8: Methodological Issues, Reporting and Review under the Kyoto Protocol


The Kyoto Protocol’s effectiveness will depend upon two critical factors: whether Parties follow the Protocol’s rulebook and comply with their commitments; and whether the emissions data used to assess compliance is reliable. Recognizing this, the Kyoto Protocol and Marrakesh Accords, adopted by CMP 1 in Montreal, Canada, in December 2005, include a set of monitoring and compliance procedures to enforce the Protocol’s rules, address any compliance problems, and avoid any error in calculating emissions data and accounting for transactions under the three Kyoto mechanisms (emissions trading, clean development mechanism and joint implementation) and activities related to land use, land use change and forestry (LULUCF).

The Protocol’s monitoring procedures are based on existing reporting and review procedures under the Convention, building on experience gained in the climate change process over the past decade. They also involve additional accounting procedures that are needed to track and record Parties’ holdings and transactions of Kyoto Protocol units - assigned amount units (AAUs), certified emission reductions (CERs) and emission reduction units (ERUs) - and removal units (RMUs) generated by LULUCF activities.

Articles 5, 7 and 8 of the Kyoto Protocol address reporting and review of information by Annex I Parties under the Protocol, as well as national systems and methodologies for the preparation of greenhouse gas inventories.

  • Article 5 commits Annex I Parties to having in place, no later than 2007, national systems for the estimation of greenhouse gas emissions by sources and removals by sinks (Article 5.1). It also states that, where agreed methodologies (that is, the revised 1996 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories, see decision 2/CP.3) are not used to estimate emissions and removals, appropriate "adjustments" should be applied (Article 5.2).
  • Article 7 requires Annex I Parties to submit annual greenhouse gas inventories, as well as national communications, at regular intervals, both including supplementary information to demonstrate compliance with the Protocol. In addition, Article 7 states that the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Protocol (CMP) shall decide upon modalities for the accounting of assigned amounts prior to the first commitment period.
  • Article 8 establishes that expert review teams will review the inventories, and national communications submitted by Annex I Parties.