Information matters – ambitious reporting and international learning

Project description

Title: Information matters – capacity building for ambitious reporting and facilitation of international mutual learning through peer-to-peer exchange
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB)
Country: Chile, Dominican Republic, Ghana, Philippines
Lead executing agency: Chile: Ministerio de Medio Ambiente (MMA); Dominican Republic: Consejo Nacional para el Cambio Climático y el Mecanismo de Desarrollo Limpio (CNCCMDL); Ghana: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); Philippines: Climate Change Commission (CCC)
Overall term: 2013 to 2016


As part of the United Nations climate negotiations, the international community has set itself the goal of limiting global warming to less than two degrees Celsius. Massive reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions are necessary to meet this target. In order to assess the progress countries are making towards achieving this objective at the global level, the participants at the international climate conference in 2011 in Durban, South Africa, agreed to submit biennial reports to the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The reports document the current status and any changes in greenhouse gas emissions and also outline the country’s climate change mitigation activities. However, many developing countries lack the human, financial and institutional resources and capacity needed to prepare these reports.


The transparency and quality of the biennial update reports produced by partner countries meet the requirements of the Framework Convention on Climate Change and therefore constitute an important component of the 2015 Paris climate agreement. The partner countries are familiar with the relevant guidelines and instruments and can use them independently.


In cooperation with local partners, the project assessed the existing reporting system and institutional structures in each of the four countries. In close coordination with all stakeholders, it helped create a plan to establish a transparent and informative reporting system. The plan was tailored to the starting conditions and specific context in each country.

During several national workshops, the project trained the experts and staff in charge of reporting. In addition to advice on specific issues, staff in the partner organisations received guidelines, software and templates. A locally based GIZ expert in each of the four pilot countries supported these advisory and communication processes, and shared information with the overarching project about current needs in the partner countries.

The project produced guidelines that experts can use to take stock of the existing reporting systems and develop measures to improve them. In addition, the project drew on lessons learned to create a template for the first Biennial Update Report. This template can also be used by countries that are not involved in the project. At regional events, partners also had the opportunity to share experiences and information with other countries, identify success factors, and get advice from their colleagues.


Chile was one of the first developing countries to submit its Biennial Update Report on schedule, during the international climate conference in Lima, Peru, in December 2014. Ghana is expected to become the second project country to share its report in early 2015. The Philippines submitted its second national report, which is more comprehensive than the Biennial Update Report, in December 2014. The Dominican Republic is currently working on its national report. All of the pilot countries have now established the conditions that will enable them to prepare high-quality reports using their own resources in future.

Information Matters - Transparency through Reporting

Other countries besides the four pilot countries have also benefited from these results and products. Namibia, for instance, drew on the experiences of the partner countries and the documents produced by the project when preparing its own Biennial Update Report.