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Assessing, Measuring, and Monitoring Carbon Sequestration from Changes in Land Management Sandra Brown Winrock International Regional.

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Presentation on theme: "Assessing, Measuring, and Monitoring Carbon Sequestration from Changes in Land Management Sandra Brown Winrock International Regional."— Presentation transcript:

1 Assessing, Measuring, and Monitoring Carbon Sequestration from Changes in Land Management Sandra Brown Winrock International Regional Scientific Workshop: Land Management for Carbon Sequestration in West Africa Bamako, Mali February 26-27, 2004

2 2 Why interest in carbon sequestration?  Development of carbon markets  Increase in carbon stocks produces many co-benefits—water, soil improvement, biodiversity, erosion control,….  Potential to increase adaptability and reduce vulnerability of countries  Changes in carbon on land are good indicators for monitoring performance of land-based projects

3 3 Deforestation and degradation of lands

4 4 Poor logging practices

5 5 Degraded watersheds

6 6 Carbon sequestration  Large potential to sequester carbon and through changes in land-use and forestry activities, such as: Afforestation & reforestation of degraded lands Protect forests from degradation and deforestation—secondary and mature forests Changes in forest harvesting practices Changes in management of grazing lands Changes in management of agricultural lands

7 7 Topics  Steps needed to assess potential for carbon sequestration activities in a region—Guinea as a case study (Exploration of Carbon Sequestration Potential in Guinean Forests) Preparation of methodology for two classes of carbon sequestration activities—need, cost, amount How to design and implement measuring and monitoring protocols for carbon sequestration activities

8 8 Forest cover in Guinea Download from FAO web site Most is secondary growth 44% of land as “other wooded land Much of original forest land cleared Produces about 650,000 m 3 of industrial roundwood Produces about 11 million m 3 of fuelwood

9 9 Assessing carbon sequestration potential  Baseline of existing land-use conditions  Potential activities to enhance carbon stocks determined by biophysical and socio-economic conditions  Potential quantities of carbon sequestered for different activities  Estimate costs for implementing activities  Identify promising classes of activities based on cost per ton of carbon, total quantity, risks, and co-benefits

10 10 Protected areas of Guinea Study will focus on (total area about 144,000 ha): five protected areas in the highland dry savanna region five protected areas in the lowland semi-humid area

11 11 Planned approach  Baseline conditions: Collect data for project sites including Geographic location with GPS coordinates Land use/land cover maps of areas Recent past land-use practices and length of time under practice Baseline biophysical data including climatic zones, roads, elevation, and land use/ land cover Estimates of above and below-ground carbon for different land-use practices

12 12 Asses potential carbon sequestration Classify into lands where carbon stocks could be increased Identify types of activities that could increase carbon stocks For example………

13 13 Which activity type—local needs and potential carbon Soil 1-5 t C/ha.yr t C/ha.yr Soil

14 14 Estimates of carbon stocks Estimate potential changes in carbon stocks based on biophysical factors CDIAC Ecofloristic zones (FAO)

15 15 Biomass carbon density of wooded lands in Guinea Biomass density Change in carbon

16 16 Costs and benefits of carbon sequestration  Total costs assessed with economic data and local experience are: Opportunity cost—based on productive value of land Conversion costs—e.g. planting trees Maintenance costs—weeding, tending to seedlings, etc. Measuring and monitoring costs Transaction costs—developing project concept, baselines  Risks—reversibility from natural and human factors  Assessment of co-benefits—environmental and potential socio-economic

17 17 Design carbon measuring and monitoring plan  IPCC Good Practice Guidance report—Ch 4.3 on projects; accepted at COP9  Techniques and methods for measuring the state and change of carbon stocks exist, and are based on peer reviewed principles of forest inventory, soil sampling, and ecological surveys.

18 18 Getting started- stratify project area with maps,remote sensing data, etc Reduces variability of the entire population Groups similar subgroups of vegetation Requires land use/ land cover map

19 19 Getting started –develop sampling design Identify what project will look like at end Establish preliminary plots in target area to estimate carbon stocks and their variation

20 20 Getting started –develop sampling design  Use standard statistical tools to estimate number of plots needed to achieve desired level of precision at different cost per plot levels recommend about +/-7-8% of mean with 95% confidence for sampling error other sources of error will add to this to give about +/- 10% overall experience shows number of plots on order of , measurable at a modest cost

21 21 Develop a M&M plan—which carbon pools to measure and monitor?  Selection of pools depends on: Type and size of project Magnitude of pool Rate of change of pools Expected direction of change Cost to measure Attainable accuracy and precision

22 -Selection of pools varies by project type -Different measuring and monitoring designs are needed for different types of projects

23 23 Install measuring and monitoring plots in a standard design and locate with a GPS

24 24 Estimating biomass of forests or woodland/savannas Measure trees and convert to biomass carbon using standard methods

25 25 Sampling forest understory and fine litter Photo by Matt Delaney Repeat process for litter (dead leaves, twigs, grasses, small branches) Use small frames Cut all herbaceus vegetation Collect sub-sample for moisture content Mix well

26 26 Sampling soils for organic carbon Collect samples for bulk density Photo by Matt Delaney Photo by André Ferreti Collect 4 samples, mix well and sieve Expose mineral soil surface Dig to desired depth

27 27 Need quality assurance and quality control plans that include……  Procedures to ensure reliable field measurements Develop and use Standard Operating Procedures for each step of the field measurements  Procedures to verify field data collection To verify that plots have been installed and the measurements taken correctly  Procedures to verify data entry and analysis Possible errors in this process can be minimised if the entry of both field data and laboratory data are reviewed Use standard methods and models to estimate changes in carbon stocks  Data maintenance and storage Data archiving is always important for verification and tracking of project performance

28 Training and capacity building in use of standard operating principles

29 29 Conclusions  Measuring and monitoring for carbon is useful for assessing performance of natural resource-based projects and is often a good proxy for other environmental co-benefits  Many opportunities to increase carbon on the land through no-regrets actions  Largest potential for carbon sequestration activities for carbon finance is via activities that promote tree planting or restoration/conservation of forests  Practical tools and methods exists for assessing, measuring, and monitoring carbon sequestration at a modest cost; aboveground changes in carbon stocks readily measured at the least cost


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