All Emissions Reduction Fund participants are required to submit a project report to the Clean Energy Regulator for each project reporting period, regardless of whether you intend to apply for Australian carbon credit units (ACCUs), or if your project is conditionally declared. A reporting period must not exceed two years for emissions avoidance projects, or five years for sequestration projects, and must start from a project’s crediting period start date, or immediately follow the previous reporting period.
Failure to obtain regulatory approvals or consents from eligible interest holders by the end of the first reporting period is not a valid reason to delay reporting. Projects with conditional declarations can submit project reports, but ACCUs cannot be issued until all conditions on the project declaration (eligible interest holder consents and regulatory approvals) have been removed.
The deadline for submitting project reports is six months after the end of the reporting period, unless your method specifies otherwise. Some project reports must also be accompanied by an audit report. If an audit report is not provided when required, ACCUs will not be issued.
Failure to submit your project report on time may result in civil penalties, a review of your fitness to participate in the scheme, project revocation, or loss of entitlement to ACCUs. In certain circumstances, the Clean Energy Regulator may accept an enforceable undertaking instead of seeking a civil penalty order.
Participants that anticipate they may not be able to meet their reporting deadline should contact the Clean Energy Regulator as soon as possible to discuss the possibility of varying the project crediting period start date, which in some cases may be extended by up to 18 months. Participants that wish to vary the start date of their project crediting period must do so before the first reporting deadline to avoid the risk of civil penalties.
Participants who have varied their crediting period start date and are still unable to meet the first reporting deadline must notify the Clean Energy Regulator in writing, no later than three months before the deadline (which is the day the report is due). The Clean Energy Regulator will assess late reporting on a case-by-case basis, and is under no-obligation to provide extensions. If your project is linked to a carbon abatement contract, you will need to consider impacts on delivery milestones if your project start date or reporting timeframe has changed.
Under the Emissions Reduction Fund, late reporting is a serious breach of the law, and may result in your project being revoked. Providing false or misleading information may result in enforcement action by the Clean Energy Regulator. For more information, see the compliance, education and enforcement policy.
If ACCUs from your project report are to be used to meet contract deliverables then you need to submit the report in time for the Clean Energy Regulator to assess the report. The Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) Act 2011 (CFI Act) states that the Clean Energy Regulator may take up to 90 days to assess project reports, either from the date on which the report was submitted, or from the date on which a complete response to a request for further information was received.
Contracted project proponents who are seeking additional time to provide reports for their projects should engage early with the Clean Energy Regulator if they believe there will be difficulties in meeting delivery obligations.
No ACCUs can be issued for a project until all conditions on the project declaration (eligible interest holder consents and regulatory approvals) have been removed.
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