Supporting operational systems for Measurement, Reporting and Verification

Every year, government and corporate organisations undertake a multitude of individual actions to meet their reporting requirements for land-sector greenhouse gas emissions. This process is represented in the diagram below (Image 1) containing all key actions required by three key organisations sphere. The diagram is then broken down into a sequence of layers to unpack the complexities of operational measurement, reporting and verification (MRV) systems. 

Each action in the cycle includes a combination of policy, governance and/or technical inputs or decisions that can transcend organisational boundaries. Adding to the complexity, these tasks are not linear, rather cyclical, and must be considered on a regular basis. Due to these complexities, it is essential that organisations have an operational Measurement, Reporting, and Verification (MRV) system for their land-sector greenhouse gas emissions.

In an operational MRV cycle there are five key milestones; annual plans are completed, new data and/or models arrive, there are system runs and the inventory is submitted. Finally, the UNFCCC reviews or assesses the inventory. Each of these milestones requires an action (Image 3), and some milestone have actions that cross boundaries of the organisation, requiring collaboration between the policy, technical and governance spheres.

In meeting the five key milestones, there are many sub-tasks that must be completed in the annual cycle (Image 4). As with the key milestones, these tasks can require inputs from the policy, technical, and governance spheres. While policy and technical spheres may not be required for all tasks, it is essential that governance be a continuous focus throughout the whole process to maintain consistency and organisation of the MRV system.

A key step in meeting any reporting requirement is compiling all of the data collected and collated on activities and emissions of greenhouse gases from the land sector, and calculating the required information (Image 5). This compilation and calculation process (Runs) can be completed through a vast array of tables and spreadsheets, or completed in specialised software that combines data and models to summarise emission movements. The Mullion Group’s FLINTpro platform has been developed to complete advanced Runs quickly and easily using the latest models and data.

FLINTpro is an easy to use online platform that supports corporate and government organisations to develop and maintain their annual MRV cycle more effectively and efficiently.The majority of key actions in the cycle can be supported by the FLINTpro platform (Image 6). These can be divided across the three main spheres:

Policy

  • Supports analysis of policy options through projections
  • Advanced visualisation and analytics capabilities for transparency
  • Secure online interface for easy of access, no installations required

Governance and institutional issues 

  • Provides a framework for designing and operating a system
  • Provides a framework for continuous improvements
  • Supports data management processes, including data sharing and archiving
  • Reduces costs and increases usability, hence increasing the sustainability of systems

Technical issues 

  • Allowing for multiple system runs as needed
  • Automated reporting and Quality Assurance/Quality Control process
  • Testing new data and models for future inclusion in the system

Not only can FLINTpro process a variety of data sources in one Run, the platform can layer data on models and produce spatially specific outputs. These outputs can show progression over time and even predict future outcomes of policy decisions. FLINTpro integrates the best of both worlds, GIS spatial data and the time specific modelling data, on one platform.