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Ministerial Decision No.20/2016 - Regulations for the Management of Climate Affairs

Last updated: 23 December 2020

This regulation requires projects with significant greenhouse gas emissions to apply for and obtain a climate affairs permit.  The law stipulates that this requirement applies to exploration and production of natural gas and oil among others.  This permit is issued by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Affairs.

Under Article 5, a license is required of oil and natural gas developments, including exploration and production activities, liquefying and exporting of natural gas, oil and gas transport through pipelines and storage facilities (that emit 2000 metric tons of CO2 equivalents per year or more; or that product and consume 30 TJ of energy per year or more). The regulation indicates that the request for a license requires an initial approval of the project by the Directorate General of Environmental Affairs and an initial report on the amount of greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions to be estimated according to the specifications outlined in Annex C.

As part of the permitting process, projects are required to monitor and report their greenhouse gas emissions annually; use efficient, less energy-consuming and low GHG emission technologies; submit a plan to increase green space; and to undertake all necessary adaptation measures to protect their business from the impacts of climate change.

This regulation also requires the Directorate-General of Climate Affairs to create and maintain a national inventory of greenhouse gas emissions; assess environmental impacts studies and climate affairs; take emission reduction measures; develop emissions measurement methods and tools; conduct surveys of greenhouse gases emissions according to the requirements of the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change; develop and implement national mitigation programs, and conduct scientific research on climate change.

Methane is included in the list of greenhouse gases under Annex A. Under Appendix C, the scope of GHGs extends to fugitive emissions, which are defined as the intentional or unintentional release of GHG in undertakings, including methane leaks during the transport of natural gas.

The regulation also sets out licence fees as well as administrative fines which shall be imposed in case of non-compliance.

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