Climate change is one of the biggest challenges facing humanity at the current time. Global temperatures are expected to rise beyond levels that ecosystems can adapt to, and significant changes seem likely. All human activity will be affected, and this is prompting serious international collaboration on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
Forests have two major roles to play here. Firstly, significant emissions are generated by forest degradation and deforestation. It is in the interest of forest managers to stop and even reverse these losses, although the problems are largely associated with the agricultural sector and its expansion as the world population both increases and seeks steadily better levels of nutrition. Reducing emissions from forest degradation and deforestation (known as REDD) has become an important policy tool in many countries, especially as there are a number of added benefits (referred to as REDD+).
The second area that forests can play a major part in reducing atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide is through maintenance and enhancement of carbon sinks in forests. This involves both ensuring that carbon losses are minimized as a result of harvesting (including looking at the entire life cycle of forest products), and increasing the amount of carbon being sequestered in forests by increasing the area of forest, and lengthening rotation times. All activities are important, but they will only work if the forests themselves can adapt to the changes in climate that are accompanying the increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
4.2.1 Carbon in forests
4.2.2 Climate change
4.2.3 The Framework Convention on Climate Change
4.2.5 Global carbon cycle indicators
- Chapter 8 of the course textbook:
Innes, J., & Tikina, A. (Eds.). (2014). Sustainable forest management: From principles to practice. London: Earthscan Publications. ISBN: 1844077241
Note: of all the topics dealt with in this course, this is the one that is changing the most rapidly. Large amounts of new material are being generated, and it would be impossible to keep this reading list fully up-to-date. You are advised to do your own internet-based searches to get the very latest material. The UN-REDD site (http://www.un-redd.org/) is particularly helpful.
- Ajonina, G. et al. (2014). Carbon pools and multiple benefits of mangroves in Central Africa: Assessment for REDD+. United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Retrieved from http://www.unep.org/pdf/REDDcarbon_lowres.pdf
- Angelsen, A. (Ed.). (2009). Realizing REDD+: National strategy and policy options. Bogor Indonesia: Center for International Forestry research(CIFOR). Retrieved from http://www.cifor.org/library/2871/realising-redd-national-strategy-and-policy-options/.
- Ashton, M.S., Tyrrell, M.L., Spalding, D., & Gentry, B. (Eds.). (2012). Managing forest carbon in a changing climate. Dordrecht: Springer Science. ISBN-10:9400722311; ISBN-13: 978-9400722316
- Bregman T. et al. (2015). Achieving zero (net) deforestation commitments: What it means and how to get there. Oxford: Global Canopy Programme. Retrieved from http://globalcanopy.org/publications/achieving-zero-net-deforestation-what-it-means-and-how-to-get-there
- Broekhoven, G., & Wit, M. (Eds.). (2014). Linking FLEGT and REDD+ to improve forest governance. Wageningen, The Netherlands: Tropenbos International. Retrieved from http://www.etfrn.org/file.php/222/etfrn55-webfinal.pdf
- Ecosystem Marketplace. (2015). Full circle: REDD and Indigenous people – Past, present, and future. Washington DC: Forest Trends. Retrieved from http://www.ecosystemmarketplace.com/articles/full-circle-redd-and-indigenous-people-past-present-and-future/
- Forest Carbon Partnership Facility. (2013). A Guide to the FCPF Readiness Assessment Framework. Retrieved from https://www.forestcarbonpartnership.org/sites/fcp/files/2013/june2013/FCPF%20R-Package%20User%20Guide%20ENG%206-18-13%20web.pdf
- Robledo Abad, C. (2015). Technical guide on the quantification of carbon benefits in ITTO projects. ITTO Technical Series 43. Yokohama, Japan: International Tropical Timber Organization. Retrieved from http://www.itto.int/sfm_detail/id=4328.
- Janson-Smith, T. and Marsh, H. 2013. A corporate primer on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD). The context, key technical and policy issues, and private sector involvement. Conservation International, Washington DC. Available at: http://theredddesk.org/resources/corporate-primer-reducing-emissions-deforestation-and-forest-degradation-redd-context-key
- Kellomäki, S., Kilpeläinen, A., & Alam, A. (Eds.). (2013). Forest BioEnergy Production: Management, carbon sequestration and adaptation. New York: Springer Science. ISBN-10:1461483905; ISBN-13: 978-1461483908
- Lanius, D.R. et al. (2013). Aligning biodiversity compensation and REDD+: A primer on integrating private sector conservation financing schemes in the tropics and sub-tropics. Amsterdam: IUCN NL. Retrieved from https://www.cbd.int/financial/privatesector/g-iucn-reddcompensation.pdf
- Lorenz, K., & Lal, R. (2010). Carbon sequestration in forest ecosystems. Dordrecht: Springer Science. ISBN-10:9048132657; ISBN-13: 978-9048132652
- MacFarquhar, C., & Goodman, L. (2015). Demonstrating ‘respect’ for the UNFCCC REDD+ safeguards: The importance of community-collected information. Oxford: Global Canopy Programme. Retrieved from http://www.globalcanopy.org/materials/demonstrating-respect-unfccc-redd-safeguards-importance-community-collected-information
- Ravindranath, N.H., & Ostwald, M. (2008). Carbon inventory methods: Handbook for greenhouse gas inventory, carbon mitigation and roundwood production projects. Dordrecht: Springer Science. ISBN: 978-1-4020-6546-0 (Print) 978-1-4020-6547-7 (Online). doi: 1007/978-1-4020-6547-7. Retrieved from http://link.springer.com/book/10.1007%2F978-1-4020-6547-7
- Sharma, B.D., Vu Tan Phuong, & Swan, S.R. (2013). Generating forest biomass carbon stock estimates for mapping the potential of REDD+ to deliver biodiversity conservation in Vietnam. Ho Chi Minh City: SNV – The Netherlands Development Organisation. Retrieved from www.snvworld.org/download/publications/carbon_stock_02-10-13.pdf