Denmark has taken on obligations to limit the emission of greenhouse gasses in relation to the emission levels in 1990. These obligations concern the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and the related Kyoto Protocol.
Under the Kyoto Protocol an emission inventory is carried out to report the Danish emissions according to the rules in the Kyoto Protocol. The reduction target for the EU (EU-15) was during the first commitment period (2008-2012) 8 % for all member states and the Danish target was 21 %. The proposed target for the second commitment period is 20 % at the EU level.
Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF)
The LULUCF-sector encompasses sources and sinks of greenhouse gasses in relation to land use, including forest and agricultural land in rotation, as well as permanent grassland, wetlands, urban land and natural areas. In addition to the mandatory inventory related to article 3.3 under the Kyoto Protocol on afforestation and deforestation after 1990, Denmark decided on electing article 3.4 activities, which included forest management of forests existing before 1990, as well as cropland management and grazing land management, for fulfilling the Danish reduction commitment for the period 2008-12. This entails the continuation of the emission inventory for these activities in the second commitment period.
The SINKS project
With the aim of providing the yearly emission inventory and reporting for the first obligation period, the Danish Ministry for Climate and Energy made an agreement with the Danish Center for Environment and Energy (DCE) at Aarhus University (AU) to develop methods and build up routines for this purpose. Other involved institutions were the Department of Agroecology (AU) and the Department of Geoscience and Natural resources (IGN) at University of Copenhagen. SINKS 1 were carried out in 2008-2013, and during 2014-2022 SINKS 2 will further develop, improve and validate methods for the inventory, and produce the yearly emissions.