DFFE’s Validation and Verification Guideline for GHG Emissions (Nov 2021)



The South African Department of Forestry, Fisheries and Environment (DFFE) has recently published the final Technical Guidelines for Validation and Verification of Greenhouse Gas Emissions (the Guidelines). A brief summary of the Guidelines is provided below –

i. The requirements are divided into two phases. Phase 1 starts on the on approval of the Guidelines, 12 November 2021, and runs until December 2022. Phase 2 starts from January 2023.

ii. A company is still required to submit its data through South African GHG Emissions Reporting System (SAGERS). However, the following must be noted –

  • A company is advised to have a monitoring plan in place, although this is not mandatory. It may become mandatory under Phase 2. Monitoring plans document the organisational and operational boundaries, the emission sources, the sources of the data, the sources of the conversion factors etc. The monitoring plan can be submitted to DFFE along with the data.
  • A company can now have its data immediately approved by DFFE if it has also submitted a third-party verification report with a positive verification outcome.

iii. Once a company has submitted its data through SAGERS, DFFE will review the data. DFFE can either approve the data or require additional actions to be taken. Requiring additional actions to be taken is dictated by the results of internal checks done by DFFE. See the Guidelines for some examples of internal checks to be conducted.

iv. If the internal checks identify that there is a high potential risk of misstatement of the GHG emissions, then DFFE may require one of the following to be done –

  • Desktop document review: The company is required to respond to questions raised by DFFE.
  • On-site inspection: DFFE conducts an on-site inspection.
  • Independent verification: DFFE requests that third party verification be undertaken.

v. Requiring third party verification is dependent on the materiality of the GHG emissions of the company. If there is a high potential risk of misstatement and the GHG emissions are considered high, then DFFE will probably require third party verification. The levels of GHG emissions are given below –

Total tCO2e Impact of misstatement of facility emissions
>50 000  High
25 000 – 50 000  Moderate
15 000 – 25 000  Low
<15 000 Very Low

Note that the Guidelines allow DFFE full authority to decide which of the additional actions a company must complete.
vi. In Phase 1, third party verification can be conducted by an independent verifier that meets specific competence requirements. In Phase 2, third party verification can only be done by verifiers that are accredited by the South African National Accreditation System (SANAS).
The remainder of the Guidelines deal with the requirements for the third party verification and the verifier itself.

Catalyst Verification Solutions (Pty) Ltd, a company accredited by SANAS for measurement and verification of energy, is in the process of applying to be a verifier for GHG emissions. As a company, we have deep technical expertise in GHG emissions quantification and verification. We can assist you to comply with the above Guideline. If you would like to discuss any of the above further or discuss your GHG emissions verification requirements, then please contact –

084 299 6873
084 513 8177

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