On Friday 27 March, the Minister for Environment and Forestry, Dr Siti Nurbaya, officially endorsed the Indonesian National Carbon Accounting System (INCAS) as the basis for Indonesia’s national MRV framework for the land use sector, including REDD+ activities. In doing so, she launched two publications that describe the INCAS methods and the results from their application in the REDD+ Pilot Province of Central Kalimantan.

In her Foreword to the INCAS Standard Methods, Minister Nurbaya notes: “I am hopeful that the establishment of the INCAS as Indonesia’s official MRV system for the land sector will increase investor confidence in REDD+ activities in our country and will assist us in confidently transforming the way we manage our land sector in a more environmentally, socially and economically sustainable manner … In the months and years ahead, I look forward to seeing the continued development and expansion of the INCAS to provide national coverage and it being used as the official system for GHG inventory and reporting by all land sector agencies.”

In her speech at the seminar, Minister Nurbaya challenged her Ministry to use the INCAS to generate national results of net GHG emissions estimates for reporting to the UNFCCC at COP 21 in Paris. The application of the INCAS framework at the national level is already well advanced and a preliminary national GHG account for forests and peat lands is scheduled for completion within the next few months. With the exception of some remaining data harmonization challenges and any other unforeseen circumstances, this will provide a solid foundation to meet Minister Nurbaya’s goal.

Phase one of the INCAS, as documented in these publications, estimates annual GHG emissions and removals on forest and peat lands from the main REDD+ activities and reports these according to UNFCCC requirements. It uses a Tier 3 approach for forest land with a carbon mass balance model, and a Tier 2 approach for peat lands; both use nationally specific data. The current phase of INCAS uses best available data and has been developed by Indonesian Government officials and experts in the Ministry of Environment and Forestry. Michael Parsons and Rob Waterworth from the Mullion Group have been providing technical support and capacity building to the INCAS team.

While some challenges still remain, the Minister’s endorsement of the INCAS framework and the release of these two publications is a significant milestone for the INCAS. It will hopefully improve coordination on MRV, serve as the basis for the operation and continued development of Indonesia’s national MRV system and help to catalyse the national REDD+ effort more broadly.

Copies of the publications are available at the following links.

Standard Methods for Estimating Greenhouse Gas Emissions from the Forestry Sector in Indonesia (Version 1) http://www.cifor.org/library/5531/standard-methods-for-estimating-greenhouse-gas-emissions-from-the-forestry-sector-in-indonesia-version-1/

Estimation of Annual Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Forest and Peat Lands in Central Kalimantan http://www.cifor.org/library/5533/estimation-of-annual-greenhouse-gas-emissions-from-forest-and-peat-lands-in-central-kalimantan/