Information Matters: ambitious climate reporting

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, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Georgia, Ghana, Philippines, Viet Nam
Lead executing agency: Egypt: Ministry of State for Environmental Affairs, Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA); Chile: Ministry of the Environment (MMA); Dominican Republic: National Council for Climate Change and the Clean Development Mechanism (CNCCMDL); Georgia: Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources Protection (MoENRP); Ghana: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); Colombia: Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development (MADS); Philippines: Climate Change Commission (CCC); Viet Nam: Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE)
Overall term: 2013 to 2019


As part of the United Nations climate negotiations, the international community set itself the goal of limiting global warming to less than two degrees Celsius. Massive reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions will be needed to meet this target. In order to assess their progress towards reducing greenhouse gases, all the countries must submit biennial reports to the UNFCCC Secretariat, detailing the current levels and trends in greenhouse gas emissions and their national climate activities. However, many developing countries lack the human, financial and institutional resources and capacity needed to prepare these reports.


The Biennial Reports produced by partner countries are of a high standard of transparency and quality, thus meeting the latest requirements of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. The partner countries are familiar with the relevant guidelines and instruments and are able to use them without external input. This means that they are also equipped to meet the future reporting obligations within the Paris Agreement’s enhanced transparency framework.


The project analyses the existing reporting system and institutional structures in conjunction with local partners. It consults closely with all stakeholders to produce a plan for a transparent, sustainable and informative reporting system. These plans are tailored to the specific context and national circumstances in each country.

The project runs a number of national workshops to train the professionals and staff in charge of reporting. International experts on the subject from think tanks and consultancy firms provide professional support.

Partner organisations’ employees receive assistance and advice on detailed questions. GIZ staff are on hand in all the partner countries to support this process and provide information about the countries’ current needs. The German Federal Environment Agency (UBA) also supports the project with its long-standing expertise in UNFCCC reporting.

Guidelines help the experts to review the existing reporting system in each country and suggest possible improvements. Regional events also give partners the opportunity to share experience and insights with colleagues from other countries and identify success factors.

Above and beyond this cooperation with partner countries, the Information Matters project also offers support to other countries under its flexible ‘Ad-hoc facility’. This involves various specifically targeted activities such as one-off workshops or deployment of experts to address short-term needs and improve sustainable reporting.


Chile was one of the first developing countries to submit its Biennial Update Report in 2014 and to take part in the first round of the review process (international consultation and analysis, ICA)  in 2016. In November 2016 it submitted its second Biennial Report. The Chilean Environment Ministry launched the Latin American Greenhouse Gas Inventory Network in 2016 in order to drive forward regional networking and information sharing. GIZ – and in particular Information Matters – provides expert support to this network.

In preparing its third National Communication, the Dominican Republic completed a greenhouse gas inventory using its own human resources for the first time and improved the institutional framework.

Ghana submitted its first Biennial Report in July 2015 and concluded the associated review process (ICA) in May 2016.

Georgia underwent the review process on its first Biennial Report in 2017. In September 2017 it began work on the second Biennial Report, which is scheduled for completion in 2018.

With the support of Information Matters, Colombia is working on establishing a process within its government institutions that will be repeated at regular intervals.

A national climate data management system is about to go into operation in the Philippines.

Viet Nam submitted its second Biennial Report to the UNFCCC secretariat in November 2017.

The Information Matters project has not yet begun activities connected with preparing Egypt’s first Biennial Report.

The active pilot countries have now created the conditions needed to be able to produce future reports of constantly improving quality using their own resources. In addition to providing support at individual country level, knowledge products were also created on the basis of the lessons learned from the pilot countries, which pass on important knowledge to other developing countries and familiarise them with a range of instruments.

Information Matters - Transparency through Reporting

In addition to the eight partner countries, other countries have also benefited from the results and products: Israel, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mauritania, Namibia, Paraguay and Zambia, for example, have all been able to draw on the experience of the partner countries.