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Mechanism for monitoring greenhouse gas emissions

The European Union established a new mechanism for monitoring and reporting greenhouse gas emissions so as to be able to evaluate more accurately and more regularly the progress made in reducing emissions with a view to complying with the Community's commitments under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Kyoto Protocol.


Decision 280/2004/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 February 2004 concerning a mechanism for monitoring Community greenhouse gas emissions and for implementing the Kyoto Protocol.


The Decision establishes a mechanism designed to:

  • monitor, in the Member States, all anthropogenic greenhouse gas (carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrogen oxides (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs) and sulphur hexafluoride (SF6)) emissions (including their removal by sinks) not controlled by the Montreal Protocol on substances that deplete the ozone layer;
  • evaluate progress made in this field to ensure compliance with the Community's commitments concerning emissions and their removal;
  • implement the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol;
  • ensure that information reported by the Community to the UNFCCC Secretariat is complete, accurate, consistent, transparent and comparable.

National and Community inventories

Member States and the Community establish national inventory systems which enable them to estimate the emission and removal of greenhouse gases in their territory.

Each year, Member States must communicate to the Commission (by 15 January each year at the latest) other information on greenhouse gas emissions. The Commission then prepares an inventory and a report on the greenhouse gases in the Community. It sends the report to the Member States before 28 February and to the Secretariat of the UNFCCC before 15 April. These reports enable progress under the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol to be assessed.

National and Community programmes

The Member States and the Community respectively must devise, publish and implement national programmes and a Community programme to limit or reduce anthropogenic emissions by sources and enhance the removal, by sinks, of all greenhouse gases not controlled by the Montreal Protocol.

National and Community registries

The Community and its Member States must establish registries accounting for the issue, holding, transfer, cancellation and withdrawal of units and incorporating the registries established under the Community scheme for greenhouse gas emission allowance trading.

Assessment of progress made

Each year, the Commission evaluates whether the progress made throughout the Community is sufficient to meet the commitments made at international level under the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol.

The Commission must submit an annual progress evaluation report to the European Parliament and the Council. This report must include information on projected emissions and removals, and on policies and measures taken to reduce emissions.

Assigned amounts

By 31 December 2006, the Community and each Member State informed the UNFCCC Secretariat of the emission levels assigned to them pursuant to the Kyoto Protocol and Decision 2002/358/EC concerning the approval of the Kyoto Protocol and the joint fulfilment of commitments thereunder (Decision 2010/778/EU).


ActEntry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal

Decision 280/2004/EC



OJ L 49 of 19.2.2004


Report from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council of 7 October 2011 – Progress towards achieving the Kyoto objectives [COM(2011) 624 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Last updated: 31.10.2011
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