BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN – All Bruneian facilities that emit or absorb greenhouse gases will now be required to submit quarterly and annual emissions data as part of the Mandatory Carbon Reporting Directive.

The directive was launched on Thursday by the Brunei Darussalam National Council on Climate Change (BNCCC) and will apply to both government and industry actors starting from April 19, 2023.

Emissions data will be gathered across four sectors – energy; waste; agriculture, forest and land use (AFOLU); and industrial processes and product usage (IPPU).

“It is crucial to have accurate baseline data, given the country’s legally binding commitments [under the Paris Agreement],” said Ahmad Zaiemaddien Pehin Dato Hj Halbi, the head of Brunei’s Climate Change Secretariat (BCCS).

Dato Dr Hj Mohd Amin Liew Abdullah, a minister at PMO and co-chair of the BNCCC, officiates the launch of the Mandatory Carbon Reporting Directive on April 27, 2023. Photo: The Scoop

The directive states that facilities must submit their first preliminary report by April 30, but the government will employ a degree of leniency during a two-year grace period.

“We understand that building capacity and competency takes time… The grace period enables quarterly submissions past their formal deadlines, and submissions will be allowed twice yearly rather than quarterly,” Zaiemaddien told The Scoop.

“After the grace period, we hope to maintain a level of discipline and competency… We have appointed sector leads to oversee each of the four sectors to ensure that all processes are being followed.”

When asked if facilities would be punished for failing to submit data, the BCCS head there was no legislation in place to enforce punitive measures.

“There is no official [legal] act or order. However, the issue may be revisited after the grace period, we don’t know yet.”

To ensure accuracy and transparency, all annual reports will undergo third-party verification and data must follow the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) guidelines, with a focus on CO² emissions.

In a statement, Prime Minister’s Office said mandatory reporting “serves as an important first step” to track Brunei’s progress on reducing greenhouse gas emissions through accurate and reliable data.

Under the Paris Agreement, the sultanate aims to cut carbon emissions by 20% in next seven years, eventually moving towards net zero emissions by 2050.