Practical case for Greece
The Centre for Renewable Energy Sources (CRES) has prepared 173 national emission factors. Most of the emission factors referred to the energy and transport sectors. The following table shows the number of the emission factors per category.
The National Inventory Report (NIR) was used as a reliable data source for sectors when feasible and as a guide for key data sources and calculation methodologies. However, due to the level of disaggregation required for the definition of national emission factors and the lack of detailed data in the NIR, several other sources were also used to build the national database, such as Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) databases and literature data.
Moreover, emission factors were calculated according to the methodologies provided by:
2006 IPCC Guidelines for national greenhouse gas inventories,
EMEP/EEA air pollutant emission inventory guidebook 2013,
and the DEFRA methodology paper for emission factors.
The main issue encountered when building the national database was the lack of detailed data, which led to assumptions in some cases. To avoid significant errors due to unreliable data input, in some cases the decision was reached to focus on methodologies, approaches and emission factors compatible with a certain degree of reliability.
For example, in Greece, the domestic aviation EF was calculated based on the detailed EMEP/EEA methodology. The focus was on domestic passenger flights, as available data on domestic air freight was unclear and raised several ambiguities.
Another issue encountered was the lack of disaggregation of the GHG EF. Various issues arose in relation to the applicabitily of this data when calculating the carbon footprint of the organisation with the Base Carbone® tool.
The calculation methods and metadata are described in the EF Database Greek Report pdf file.
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If you are a policy maker, you can also be interested in explanation about the way to build your own database, here.