Regulation on monitoring, reporting and verification of greenhouse gas emissions was published in the official gazette dated 25.04.2012. I see the publication of this regulation as a turning point in Turkey’s work on climate change and I congratulate those who contributed to the preparation of the regulation. Because of the determination of the emission-causing sectors to monitor the emissions, will be the main basis of a serious initiative to limit resources that cause climate change.
Sectors, that are causing emission, have begun to work on how to monitor their emissions within the framework of this regulation. I believe this article will help to measure emissions accurately and without errors in the emission-generating industries. In this context, I find it useful to explain a few issues that are decisive in the regulation.
- First of all, the gas that will be verified and reported by monitoring, is stated in Annex-2 of the regulation and contains Carbon Dioxide (CO2), Methane (CH4), Diazot Oxide (N2), Hydrofluorocarbon (HFCs), Perfluorocarbon (PFCs), Sulfur Hexafluoride (SF6) gases.
Meaning of verification, is a verification of both the monitoring plan and the monitoring reports belonging to the emission amount monitored according to a plan by a verifier. Verification bodies are accredited by TÜRKAK (Turkish Accreditation Agency) and will act on behalf of the Ministry (Ministry of Environment and Urbanization). Detailed information is given in the regulation regarding the verification bodies.
- Annex-1 of the regulation provides very detailed and clear explanations about the sectors that are subject to the regulation. In brief, the activities are classified according to the size of thermal rated heating power (20 MW and above) or daily production capacities in scope of the regulation. In the regulation prepared by following the European Emissions Trading System; energy production, oil refining, coke production, cement and clinker production, iron and steel production, primary and secondary aluminum production, ceramics, lime, glass, paper, plaster, fibers, carbon black, nitric acid, adipic acid, and glioksal glioksilik acid, ammonia, hydrogen, and synthesis gas, soda ash and sodium bicarbonate production organisations are in the scope of regulation.
- Activities covered by the regulation will be required to monitor, report the 2015 emissions and approve this report by the verification bodies. The deadline for submission of the monitoring report for 2015 to the ministry is the last day of April 2016.
- Monitoring of greenhouse gases will be carried out according to the monitoring plan that will be approved by the Ministry. Monitoring plans are required to be validated and submitted to the Ministry before 6 months of the first date that needs to be monitored. In other words, the monitoring plans have to be approved by the verification bodies by the end of June 2014 and submitted to the Ministry.
In the framework of the above 3rd and 4th articles, steps for monitoring, verification and reporting of greenhouse gases in the first year are as follows.
There are 4 very important steps to be taken till the first half of 2014 to provide functionality to monitoring, verification, and reporting systems.
- Publication of communiques which is made the regulation on the monitoring of greenhouse gas emissions operational as soon as possible,
- Raising awareness and informing the activity organizations that will monitor greenhouse gases,
- Accreditation of verification bodies that will check monitoring plans and reports by TÜRKAK, therefore increasing the capacity in TÜRKAK,
- Having infrastructure that will approve monitoring plans and reports and adequately trained personnel in the Ministry.
We have 1,5 – 2 years to perform the above requirements. If you say ‘is that enough’, i say ‘it’s possible’. Because there are carbon consulting firms that operate in the voluntary carbon market in Turkey since 2005 and have the ability to provide consultancy and guidance to industrial enterprises, ministries, verification bodies and accreditation agency. As long as legal arrangements that will lead the system can be made. I have a belief that the private sector will overcome this work. As I said before, the legal regulation on the monitoring of greenhouse gas emissions in Turkey is following the current directive in the European Union since 2003. For this reason, the experience in the European Emissions Trading System will lead Turkey to monitor greenhouse gas emissions, as in the voluntary carbon market. But the biggest role will be played by the bureaucracy that sets the rules and approves it.
The Department of Climate Change of the Ministry of Environment and Urbanization is leading Turkey’s works on climate change. Lack of infrastructure in monitoring, verifying and reporting of greenhouse gas emissions works could jeopardize the survival of the system that will be formed. Considerations and matters to be done as soon as possible are gaining the relevant unit personnel to the competence and number as soon as possible, raising the awareness of sectors and performing information work, authorization of verification bodies, upgrading the electronic infrastructure to meet the needs.
If the system of monitoring and reporting of greenhouse gas emissions gains functionality, firstly in this way, Turkey will have measurable, reportable and verifiable emissions data that will unconditionally meet the demands of the international climate change negotiations and will be able to conduct a more consistent negotiation based on the data it holds. Secondly, determining the sources that are caused emissions will be possible and preventive policies will be developed within this framework. Since monitoring, reporting and verification of greenhouse gas emissions will reveal many positive consequences alone, I think this step of the ministry has a vital importance and I support. On the other hand, the steps need to be taken by the ministry are to inform the sector and to make infrastructure work primarily. Now, the sectors want to publish the communique on the implementation of the regulation as soon as possible and see their future better in this framework.