Inter-American Development Bank

Greenhouse gas accounting at project and portfolio level

This page is part of the E3G Public Bank Climate Tracker Matrix, our tool to help you assess the Paris alignment of public banks, MDBs and DFIs.

Paris AlignmentReasoning
Some progressThe IDB covers a wide range of sectors with its GHG tracking and but has no absolute emissions target for its GHG.
Year startedInclusion threshold (CO2e/ year)Sectors  
2009.  25Kt. Energy, industry, agriculture, water, transport, urban development, tourism.8 million metric tons (2016-19). 


The IDB has a comprehensive system for assessing GHG emissions.

The approach covers projects in the seven sectors that dominate the portfolio GHG emissions footprint — energy, industry, agriculture, water and sanitation, transport, urban development, and tourism. 

Moreover, all direct investment projects with emissions, or emissions savings, exceeding 25 kilotons CO2-equivalents (CO2e) per annum have been assessed, which is amongst the lower thresholds among the MDBs. 

The IDB’s approach states: “Presenting gross positive emissions and net savings numbers alongside each other allows for a holistic view of the carbon footprint of the activity of an institution. It is important to highlight positive gross GHG emissions figures in order to be transparent and credible and to create an awareness of high-emission projects.” 

The IDB is tracking the emissions reduced (avoided net emissions) and generated (generated gross emissions) across its portfolio. For example, in 2015, the IDB reduced emissions by 0.6 million tons from low-carbon development projects, and generated emissions of 0.5 million tons from greenfield and expansion projects. The IDB has a portfolio-wide multi-year emission reduction target in its corporate results framework of reducing emissions by 8 million tons CO2 equivalent (based on cumulative results over 2016-19), which was set against a reference baseline of 6.9 million tons CO2e over 2012-14. However, it is not clear if this target has been assessed as being sufficient to align with Paris Agreement goals. Further clarification needed on whether portfolio-wide target is an absolute emissions target. 

Regarding transportation, the IDB published “Mitigation Strategies and Accounting Methods for Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Transportation”. This document is intended to help planners in Latin America in understanding how to assess the GHG emissions reduction benefits of sustainable transport projects, policies and strategies. The document should aid planners accessing climate finance to support sustainable transport initiatives, as well as to assist evaluators in understanding and measuring GHG benefits of proposed investments.

Last Update: November 2020

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