FAO publications 

Key FAO documents on Climate Change


New publications


Agriculture, forestry and other land use emissions by sources and removals by sinks FAO statistical working paper series 14-02. This report discusses new knowledge on anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture, forestry and other land use (AFOLU) activities made available through the new FAOSTAT Emission database. The database is available globally, with country detail, for all agriculture, forestry and land sub-categories available in FAOSTAT and in the Forest Resources Assessment (FRA). GHG emissions are computed from official national activity data and geo-spatial analyses, applying international standard methodologies of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to ensure consistency with GHG Inventory processes established under the climate convention. The analysis shows increases in emissions of agriculture (from 4.6 to 5.0 Gt CO2 eq yr-1 in 1990s and 2000s; 5.3 Gt CO2 eq yr-1 in 2011), decreases in deforestation rates (from 4.6 to 3.8 Gt CO2 eq yr-1 in 1990s and 2000s; 3.7 Gt CO2 eq yr-1 in 2010), and decreases in forest sinks, albeit with a reversal since the mid-2000s (from -2,9 to -1.9 Gt CO2 eq yr-1 in 1990s and 2000s values; -2.1 Gt CO2 eq yr-1 in 2010). At the same time, the data show that GHG intensity of products (i.e., GHG emissions per unit commodity produced) decreased during 1990-2010, but that if no further mitigation measures and technical efficiency improvements are implemented, future emissions may further increase by up to 30% by 2050. Better information on AFOLU emissions is critical in many developing countries, given the potential to identify and fund actions that can usefully bridge national food security, resilience, mitigation and development goals into one coherent package. [more]
Towards climate-responsible peatlands management Peatlands are lands with a naturally accumulated peat layer at their surface. In their natural state, peatlands support a large range of habitats and provide a home for unique biodiversity. Even though peatlands extend over a relatively small portion of the earth’s land surface, they hold a large pool of carbon. Along with storing large quantities of carbon, peatlands also play an important role in the retention, purification and release of water and in the mitigation of droughts and floods. When drained, peatlands become net sources of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Because of drainage, organic soils are currently the third-largest emitter of GHGs in the Agriculture, Forestry and Land Use sector. The aim of this guidebook is to support the reduction of GHG emissions from managed peatlands and present guidance for responsible management practices that can maintain peatlands ecosystem services while sustaining and improving local livelihoods. This guidebook also provides an overview of the present knowledge on peatlands, including their geographic distribution, ecological characteristics and socio-economic importance. [more]
Evidence and Knowledge Gaps on Climate Smart Agriculture in Vietnam Agricultural production in northern mountainous region (NMR) of Vietnam faces multiple pressures from soil degradation, poverty, food security, and climate change. A close look at agricultural practices that could potentially capture the synergies between food security and climate adaptation and mitigation may help outline a sustainable solution to the multifaceted problems of this region. This paper reviews the site-specific research in the published literature on the economic and climate impacts as well as the barriers to the adoption of agroforestry and sustainable land management in the NMR, and aims to identify knowledge gaps that need to be addressed for an evidence-based agricultural development policy in the region. [more]
Climate-Smart Agriculture and resource tenure in Sub-Saharan Africa: a conceptual framework Though many studies document the positive impacts of various climate-smart agricultural (CSA) practices on crop yields, adoption of such practices remains limited in many areas in sub-Saharan Africa. A number of barriers to adoption have been identified, with many researchers noting the importance of property rights systems and tenure insecurity in particular. Nonetheless, few papers document the pathways by which current property rights and tenure security affect the adoption of CSA, or how altering either the bundle of property rights or the degree of tenure security over each piece of the bundle can lead to increased adoption of CSA. In this paper, we first discuss key characteristics of four CSA practices related to sustainable land management. We then lay out a conceptual framework for evaluating the pathways by which expanding property rights and strengthening tenure security affects incentives to adopt technologies broadly, and then apply the framework to each of the four CSA practices. [more]

last updated:  Wednesday, October 9, 2013