The INCAS has been developed by the Government of Indonesia to support its own unique GHG data and reporting needs for the land based sectors.
The INCAS framework uses best available data, fully transparent and repeatable methods, and flexible definitions and assumptions, and relies on a process of continuous improvement to ensure credibility and currency.
The INCAS follows the principles of Transparency, Accuracy, Consistency, Completeness, and Comparability, as required for reporting to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
Transparency—clear and readily available documentation of INCAS concepts, methodologies, data inputs and results.
Accuracy—INCAS uses detailed information (e.g. forest type, forest function, forest cover change, soil type, etc.) and the impact and timing of specific disturbance events to improve the accuracy of emissions/removals estimates, always using the best available data.
Consistency—INCAS uses consistent methods and datasets for all years, such as wall-to-wall remote sensing to create a national, time-series consistent analysis of forest-cover change.
Completeness—the INCAS framework includes all lands, carbon pools, relevant gases, and activities at all scales.
Comparability—INCAS methods and reporting are designed to meet international reporting requirements, including comparability with GHG inventory submissions made by other countries.
Features of the INCAS
To support GHG reporting requirements and informed decisions, implementation, and monitoring of emissions reductions interventions, the INCAS provides the following specific functions.
The INCAS approach enables forest condition and GHG emissions/removals to be monitored and reported for any time period (annual and multi-year): in the past, the current year, or projected into the future, and also for any geographic extent. It can also be used as a decision-support tool, where potential land management scenarios can be run through the system to determine their impact on carbon assets. This will allow the value of carbon resources to be factored into land-use planning decisions.
A process-based approach provides greater flexibility when producing estimates of GHG emissions and removals. The INCAS approach uses a carbon accounting tool that allows for multiple iterations of the system to be run efficiently, reducing the potential for calculation errors, ultimately improving the quality of outputs, and cutting running costs.
INCAS allows for analyses of different land management scenarios and policy options. This provides support to policymakers to target emissions-reduction policies and programmes effectively.
Outputs can be produced to meet international, national, or sub-national reporting requirements, e.g. for national or subnational GHG inventories, FRELs, National Communications, REDD+ activities, and domestic reporting. The results are presented as net GHG accounts and separated into emissions and removals. The results can also be presented according to forest and soil type, forest function, and subsequent land use. The system can generate historical GHG inventories, generate projections of future emissions scenarios, and also meet ongoing emissions monitoring requirements.
Technologies and data are continually improving, enabling improved estimates of GHG emissions and removals. The INCAS framework is designed to easily incorporate new data and rerun entire time series to ensure consistency between historical and forecast emissions estimates, and to comply with new policy settings. The current national GHG inventory is the result of phase 1 of the INCAS, which focuses on the forestry sector (including peatland). In future years this will be followed by phase 2, which will include the agricultural sector and phase 3 will link to subnational GHG accounts.
Transparency is built into the measurement and reporting system to facilitate quality control (QC) and quality assurance (QA), and external verification of results. INCAS reports provide a transparent summary of the methodology, data inputs, definitions, assumptions, and any limitations of the analysis.
Uncertainty is reduced throughout the data preparation and analysis phases by using geographically and temporally consistent methods. The best available data is used, noting sources and limitations. The INCAS framework enables uncertainty analysis to be undertaken for specific parameters where the data permit.
To demonstrate the effectiveness of implementing REDD+ activities it will be necessary to monitor the impact of specific events or combinations of events over time—on forest and peatlands and the associated GHG emissions and removals. The INCAS approach allows for this.
According to the UNFCCC Warsaw Framework for REDD+, countries must ensure consistency between the approaches used to calculate historical GHG inventories and annual updates, and use the same approach to generate baselines, including Forest Reference Emissions Level (FREL)/Forest Reference Level (FRL). The INCAS approach is geographically and temporally consistent and is specifically designed to support the generation of GHG inventories, the development of emissions baselines, and for monitoring ongoing annual progress against that baseline for all of Indonesia. This means using a consistent methodology so that any changes monitored can be recorded as real changes to net GHG emissions from interventions, including REDD+ activities.