Mitigation of Climate Change in Agriculture (MICCA) Programme
Monitoring and Assessment of Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Mitigation Potential in Agriculture
Greenhouse gas emissions from the agriculture sector presented for the first time in FAO Statistical yearbook 2013
The 2013 edition of FAO's Statistical Yearbook released today sheds new light on agriculture's contribution to global warming, trends in hunger and malnutrition and the state of the natural resource base upon which world food production depends.
To view the FAO Statistical yearbook 2013, click here.
Greenhouse gases database now available on FAOSTAT
A new domain on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions has just been released on both FAOSTAT and it's new pilot version FAOSTAT3. This is intended as the first in a range of services aimed at agri-environmental indicators, to help member countries enhance their capacity to identify, assess and report environmental statistics.
“We are expanding our data services to a wide range of agri-environmental and socio-economic indicators, providing at the same time access to improved analysis tools, including the possibility to compare FAO data to those from other institutions, for instance data from the United States Department of Agriculture,” said Pietro Gennari, Director of the Statistics Division.
At the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP 17) in Durban last year, countries agreed to report their greenhouse gas emissions at least biennially, starting end of 2014.
“It is in this context, and in relation to emissions from agriculture, forestry and other land uses, that the database can support the needs of FAO member countries,” said Francesco Tubiello, Natural Resources Officer, Climate, Energy and Tenure Division.
The newly added GHG database offers a complete time-series of emission statistics for all countries over the period 1990-2010. It provides countries with vital, regularly updated information to help them consistently identify, assess and report GHG emissions from their agriculture, forestry and other land use sectors, as part of the activity data they already report to FAO.
The emissions estimates are computed from FAOSTAT activity data following the internationally approved methodology for GHG reporting developed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Progress made thus far includes a robust technical peer review of the GHG database from dozens of experts at FAO and around the world. The GHG data are now open to the public, facilitating feedback from countries.FAO Employees and Members at the FAOSTAT side event at FAO Council
FAOSTAT3 offers free, easy access to data and introduces enhanced features tailored to the information needs of a wide variety of users. These include browsing and analysis of data, advanced interactive data download, cross-domain data search using free-text, and data exchange through web services.
The system is still evolving and users around the world are encouraged to provide comments and suggestions on the functionalities and performance of the new platform through the feedback system.
How to navigate to the GHG domain in FAOSTAT3
Developing the GHG database
Countries regularly report their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from all sectors to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), including emissions from agriculture, forestry and other land use changes (AFOLU). While developed countries publish detailed emissions accounts every year, many developing countries and especially least-developed countries lack the capacity to assess and report their emission levels, especially for their agricultural sectors. As a result, only a few developing countries have been able to submit GHG emission reports since 1990. In general:
FAO has significant potential to fill this information gap. First, through its access to long-term, internationally accepted global data on agricultural activities, FAO is uniquely positioned to develop a coherent GHG database for all AFOLU sectors by country. Second, FAO can act as an impartial institution and honest broker in assessing GHG emissions data, providing its country members with a quality control and quality assurance mechanism in support of national inventory reporting. Third, through the new database FAO can help identify climate responses that are consistent with key rural development objectives of its member countries, supporting actions that ensure food security while preserving natural resources, increasing resilience and creating new employment opportunities.
To this end, while the FAOSTAT GHG database is not a replacement for UNFCCC reporting requirements, it can provide significant support to FAO member countries along four key dimensions:
The Monitoring and Assessment of Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Mitigation Potential in Agriculture (MAGHG) project is financially supported by Germany and Norway.
Peer reviewed articles
How to navigate Spaceship Earth’s food security and land-based mitigation in CCAFS News blog (2013)
How much land based greenhouse gas mitigation can be achieved without compromising food security and environmental goals? in Global Change Biology (2013)
The FAOSTAT database of greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture in Environmental Research Letters 8 (2013) 015009
Peer review of emissions database
The FAOSTAT emissions database has finalized its peer review process.
Inception Workshop on Greenhouse Gas Emissions Statistics
Presentations from the workshop, which was held on 5-6 October in Da Lat, Viet Nam, are now available on the MAGHG Capacity Building page
Tel. +39 06 570 52169