5 Brazilian cities that are leading on climate reporting

To wrap up 2020 five Brazilian municipalities that are part of the ICLEI network in South America – Betim, Canoas, Contagem, Recife and Sorocaba – released their greenhouse gas emissions inventories. GHG inventories are important climate documents that identify the cities’ GHG emissions profile and its main emissions sources. The data compiled through a GHG inventory supports the development of ambitious strategies to reduce these emissions, as well as help mitigate the impacts of climate change. These cities’ commitment to climate reporting demonstrates their dedication to climate action and the contribution they are making to building a low carbon and resilient future.


Canoas is a municipality located in the metropolitan region of Porto Alegre, in the southern region of the country, which totaled GHG emissions in 2018 of 4,057,642 tons of CO2e (equivalent carbon dioxide). The main contribution to this amount came from the stationary energy sector, specifically through the production of energy at the Alberto Pasqualini Refinery (Refap). The second highest source of emissions came from the transport sector, mainly due to the consumption of diesel and gasoline.

“Canoas has already implemented some environmental projects, such as the installation of photovoltaic energy in schools, the removal of trash from the streets and recycling plants,” says Vera Bini, Executive Secretary of the city’s Climate Change Policy Center. “We want to demonstrate our capacity to the world, seeking resources in different ways, from real and measurable perspectives.”

Explore Canoas’ GHG emissions inventory


In December 2020, the municipality of Contagem, located in Minas Gerais, in the southeastern region of the country, released their greenhouse gas emissions inventory utilizing data from 2018. According to the data present in the document, compiled by technical staff within the local government, the city’s total GHG emissions in 2018 were 1,409,364 tons of CO2e. The main contributor to this amount came from the transport sector, which was responsible for 47.5 percent of total emissions.

Tércio de Sales, Special Advisor to the Secretariat for the Environment and Sustainable Development of Contagem, says that, with the support of ICLEI South America, the city was able to see the results of drawing up the plan more efficiently. “From now on, we can think of real public policies to address emissions and the environmental impacts they have for our city.”

Access Contagem’s GHG emissions inventory.


Also located in Minas Gerais, the city of Betim also launched its second inventory, which covered the years 2014 to 2017. The inventory was based on the methodologies proposed by the Global Protocol for Community-Scale Ggreenhouse Gas Emission Inventories (GPC) and had the municipal territory as its limit.

Read Betim’s GHG emissions inventory


Recife, the capital of Pernambuco, located in the northeast of Brazil, also released the third edition of its greenhouse gas emissions inventory in December. The inventory uses the years 2016 and 2017 as a reference and is a strategic document for the future of the city because it provides the basis for climate management for the coming years, covering the aspects of adaptation and mitigation in a detailed and integrated manner.

In 2016, Recife emitted a total of 3,452,849 tons of CO2e. The transport sector was primarily responsible for emissions, accounting for about half of that number, mainly due to the burning of fossil fuels in road transport.

“The city of Recife seeks to act within the municipality, but also to support global goals. Climate change is a priority for the planet. Our partnership with ICLEI started in 2013 and allowed us to have access to what is cutting edge in the world in relation to the environment and sustainability. ICLEI opened the door for us to get here,” explained Mayor Geraldo Julio.

Explore Recife’s GHG emissions inventory


Finally, located in the interior of São Paulo, the city of Sorocaba launched the second edition of its inventory, covering the period from 2013 to 2017. This document was prepared by a team from Sorocaba City Hall, coordinated by the Secretariat for the Environment and Sustainability (SEMA), after a training offered by ICLEI, using the Clearpath system for calculating emissions.

Access Sorocaba’s GHG emissions inventory

These inventories were developed using the Global Protocol for Community-Scale Greenhouse Gas Emission Inventories (GPC). The GPC promotes clear and robust climate reporting at the local level.