This study was carried out within the framework of normative programme of the FAO Land and Plant Nutrition Management Service (AGLL) in its role as the Task Manager of Land Chapter of Agenda 21, Integrated planning and management of land resources for Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development (SARD). It is a partnership between FAO, International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD), Global Mechanism (GM) of United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and Land Resource Laboratory of Trent University, Canada. The objective is to investigate on the win-win options to address poverty alleviation, food security and sustainable management of natural resources by enhancing land productivity through diversification of agricultural systems, soil fertility management and carbon sequestration in poor rural areas and thereby creating synergies among the Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), Convention on Climate Change (CCC), and the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD).
The publication presents the methodology, models and software tools that were developed and tested in pilot field studies in Mexico and Cuba. The models and tools enable the analysis of land-use change scenarios in order to identify the land-use options and land management practices that would simultaneously maximize food and biomass production, maximize soil carbon sequestration, maximize biodiversity conservation and minimize land degradation in a given area (watershed or district). In these specific contexts, the objective is to implement win-win scenario that involve:
viable alternatives to slash and burn agriculture;
increased food security through increased yields;
increased carbon sequestration in the soil;
increased soil fertility through soil organic matter management;
This report provides a timely contribution to the debate on methods for Land use, Land-use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) as Good Practice Guidance (GPG) for the above and below ground carbon sequestration assessment (biomass and soil) to support the preparation of national greenhouse gas inventories. A further enhancement of the methodology and field-testing of the tools are required before its wide application and dissemination in field biomass measurements and carbon sequestration estimations in different agro-ecological zones. It is hoped that the models and tools will be further tested in other areas and contribute towards developing comprehensive guidelines and procedures for projects assessing the current status and optimum options of land resource use and management.