This page provides guidance for EU-member states in order to improve the quality and transparency of the EU GHG inventory for the energy sector.

During the UNFCCC reviews of the EU GHG inventory several issues have been raised regarding the transparency of the inventory, e.g. harmonisation of methodologies and comparability across MS.

Although many MS provide detailed information in their NIR the level of transparency is very different. In order to reach a better harmonized EU GHG inventory the following important information should be provided in the NIR:

  • Category description
  • Methodology description
  • Emissions factors by type of fuel
  • Issues regarding time series consistency
  • Explanation of implied emission factors
  • Description of ‘IE’ notation keys (more specific than in the CRF)
  • Description of activity data sources

Sector specific information about allocation of emissions:

  • Integrated iron and steel plants (1.A.1.c, 1.A.2.a, 2.C.1)
  • Waste incineration (other fuels, 5.C)
  • Other non-energy use, e.g. Ammonia production (2.B.1)

Besides the NIR the following information should be addressed in the CRF:

  • Source of emission factors (Default, country specific)
  • Description of methodology (Tier1, Tier2, Model)

1. Category description

The IPCC 2006 GL (Ch. 2.2 Description of sources) provide a table with a description of the sources which should be considered in 1.A sub categories. However, in the current CRF software only sub categories 1.A.2.a to 1.A.2.f are mandatory for reporting and categories 1.A.2.g to 1.A.2.m may be reported at more aggregated detail. It is good practice to describe the sources included in the sector, especially if industrial auto producers are included in 1.A.2 sub categories. In case of considerable amounts of diesel and liquid biofuel consumption are reported within a specific category (e.g. 1.A.2.k construction) and if it is not clear if the fuel is used for stationary or mobile machinery it should be explained in the respective NIR chapter. Especially for category 1.A.5 the source of emissions should be explained and/or the category name should be self-explaining (e.g. ‘military mobile machinery’).

2. Use of notation keys

Some MS do not report data for all mandatory (predefined in the CRF software) sub categories (e.g. 1.A.2) and fuel groups. This might have several reasons. In case that energy consumption is not available at a detailed level but other data (e.g. production or economic statistics) suggests activities for this category then ‘IE’ should be reported. Reporting of ‘NO’ should only be used if this activity/fuel consumption does not occur. It should be avoided to report different notation keys for activity data and emissions (e.g. ‘NO’ for activity data and ‘NA’ for emissions).

3. Methodology selection

For 1.A sub categories the Tier1, Tier2 and Model methodologies should cover all methodologies used for emission estimation. It has to be considered that according to the new 2006 GL the definition is now clear:

  • Tier1 methodology: IPCC default emission factors
  • Tier2 methodology: country specific emission factors
  • Tier3 methodology: technology specific data or measurements/mass balances
  • Model: Complex calculations which may not be explained fully transparent in the NIR. For combustion activities it is expected that this is limited to N2O and CH4 emissions calculated by road transport or aviation models.

This implies that the use of country specific (‘CS’) values equals a Tier2 methodology. For a mixture of default and CS values both Tier1 and Tier2 should be reported. The use of plant specific (‘PS’) values corresponds to a Tier3 method. It is expected that PS values for carbon content, NCV or oxidation factors are mostly used for coal combustion (e.g. using PS data from ETS). Another example of a Tier3 method would be a mass balance approach (e.g. iron and steel plant) as defined under the ETS.

The new CRF software still allows the selection of the CORINAIR method (‘CR’) which should be avoided as it will not be different to a Tier1 or Tier2 method.
Of course it is possible that the measurements (‘M’ method) might be used for the estimates. It should be considered that all measurements used to derive CS emission values (e.g. from ETS) are equal to a Tier2 method.

4. Explanation of implied emission factors

Any implied emission factor which is ‘out of range’ should be explained in the NIR. The following table presents the CO2 implied emission factor of the EU-28 GHG inventory 2014 for sector 1.A and the year 2012 and the IPCC default value range values for selected fuel groups. The grey shaded values show a typical range expectance. The non – shaded values show fuels which are used in certain countries only, used for non – energy purpose or used in certain sectors only.

EU-28 implied emission factor 2012 and IPCC default lower and upper values for selected fuels

t CO2/TJ IEF EU-28 Lower Upper Remark
Liquid Fuels 72.55
Main products 67.5 78.8 Gasoline, gasoil, kerosene, fuel oil
Petroleum coke 82.9 115 Mainly used in 1.A.2
LPG 61.6 65.6 Mainly used in 1.A.4
Refinery gas 48.2 69 Refinery fuel
Orimulsion, shale oil 69.3 85.4 Not widely used in EU
Bitumen 73 89.9 Non energy use
Crude oil, NGL, refinery feedstocks, ethane, naphtha. 56.5 76.6 Refinery input and material input for petrochemical plants. Not relevant for sectoral approach.
Solid Fuels 101.64
Coal 87.3 119 Coal, lignite, coke, briquettes
Oil Shale and tar sand 107 125 Not widely used in EU
Derived gases 44.4 308 Coke oven gas, blast furnace gas and oxygen steel gas (1.A.2.a and 2.C.1)
Coal tar 68.2 95.3 Not used as fuel. Reductant use in iron and steel industry
Gaseous Fuels 56.36 54.3 58.3 The upper value indicates a high CO2 content of the gas
Other Fuels 72.79 72.2 183 Non biomass fractions only

5. Fuel allocation

Fuels should be reported in the respective categories as described in 2006 GL (Ch. Fuel definitions). E.g. gaseous fuels should include natural gas (or blended natural gas) only but not derived gases like blast furnace, coke oven gas or refinery gas or any kind of biogas. According to the new 2006 GL the fuel group other fuels (Municipal solid waste, industrial waste) should include the non-renewable fractions only (e.g. plastics waste, waste oil) and the biomass fractions (e.g. food, wood or agricultural waste) should be allocated under biomass. It is important that more specific information about the fuels allocated under fuel group other fuels should be explained in the NIR.

6. Cross sector issues

CO2 emissions from fuel use are also allocated to sector 2 Industrial Processes and other Product use (‘IPPU’ sector). For transparency reason the amount of fuels which are considered in the IPPU sector should be explained in the NIR chapter for energy rather than in the chapter for IPPU.
The following three items should be considered especially:

  • Integrated iron and steel plants (1.A.1.c, 1.A.2.a, 2.C.1)
  • Waste incineration (other fuels, 5.C)
  • Ammonia production (2.B.1)

It is important to avoid double counting of fuel use within the energy sector and the IPPU sector (2006 GL Ch. Avoiding double counting activity data with other sectors).

Any energy consumption which is considered in the IPPU sector, together with CO2 emissions, should also be reported in the revised CRF table 1.A(d) SECTORAL BACKGROUND DATA FOR ENERGY.

6.a Iron and steel

Integrated iron and steel plants may include several activities such as: Coke ovens, ore pelletizing, blast furnaces, basic oxygen furnaces and power plants. The CRF provides several categories where to report these activities. If MS are using aggregated ETS data (based on mass balances) it is not always possible to split CO2 emissions into the different processes. For reasons of transparency it would be helpful to provide an overview about the allocation of the different processes. The following figure shows an example.

Allocation of CO2 emissions from integrated iron and steel plants (fictive example)
Activity Category CO2 emissions (kt)
Coke ovens 1.A.1.c 700
On site power plants 1.A.2.a 1 000
Blast furnace reductants 2.C.1 7 000
Lime additions 2.C.1 7 000
Basic oxygen furnace 2.C.1 100
Total 8 800

To further increase of transparency the amount of reductants reported under 2.C.1 should be reported in the NIR chapter for category 1.A.2.a. A table could look like the following.

Reporting of fuel used as a reductant for blast furnaces under category 2.C.1 (fictive example)
Fuel Energy quantity [TJ] CO2 emissions (kt)
Coke oven coke 38 462 4 000
Residual fuel oil 12 500 1 000
Hard coal 10 526 1 000
Natural gas 14 260 800
Coke oven gas 3 333 200
Total 79 081 7 000

6.b Waste incineration

Within the EU waste incineration mostly takes place with energy recovery nowadays. If waste incineration without energy recovery does not take place a ‘NO’ notation key should be reported under 5.C waste incineration instead of ‘IE’. The use of the ‘IE’ notation key under 5.C would not be correct in any way because waste incineration without energy recovery should not be reported under 1.A or any other sector as waste incineration without energy recovery would also not be considered in the energy balance.

6.c Chemicals industry

For the increase of transparency it is helpful to report fuel consumption (TJ) which is used for chemical products, such as ammonia production (2.B.1) in the NIR chapter for 1.A.

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