Clim-Fo 8-2004


No. 8/2004

1) Research Articles on Forests and Climate Change
2) Forest and Climate Change News
3) Forest and Climate Change Info & Events
4) New Publications
5) Climate Change jobs
6) Readers Communications

1) Research Articles on Forests and Climate Change

AGORA Access to Global Online Research in Agriculture

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Ecological impact of historical and future land-use patterns in Senegal

Parton, W. - Tappan, G. ¿ Ojima, D. ¿ Tschakert, P. (2004)

Journal of Arid Environments 59 (3): 605-623

ABSTRACT: The CENTURY model was used to simulate changes in total system carbon resulting from land-use history (1850¿2000), and impacts of climatic changes and improved land-use management practices in Senegal. Results show that 0.477 Gtons of carbon have been lost from 1850 to 2000. Improved management practices have the potential of increasing carbon levels by 0.116 Gtons from 2000 to 2100. Potential to store carbon exists for improved forest management and agriculture practices in southern Senegal. Potential climatic changes decrease plant production (30 percent), total system carbon (14 percent), and the potential to store carbon from improved management practices (31 percent).

Land use change and terrestrial carbon stocks in Senegal

Woomer, P.L. - Tieszen, L.L. - Tappan, G. Touré, A. - Sall, M. (2004)

Journal of Arid Environments 59 (3): 625-642

ABSTRACT: Environmental degradation resulting from long-term drought and land use change has affected terrestrial carbon (C) stocks within Africa's Sahel. We estimated Senegal's terrestrial carbon stocks in 1965, 1985, and 2000 using an inventory procedure involving satellite images revealing historical land use change, and recent field measurements of standing carbon stocks occurring in soil and plants. Senegal was divided into eight ecological zones containing 11 land uses. In 2000, savannas, cultivated lands, forests, and steppes were the four largest land uses in Senegal, occupying 70, 22, 2.7, and 2.3 percent of Senegal's 199,823 km2. System C stocks ranged from 9 t C ha-1 in degraded savannas in the north, to 113 t C ha-1 in the remnant forests of the Senegal River Valley. This approach resulted in estimated total C stocks of 1019 and 727 MT C between 1965 and 2000, respectively, indicating a loss of 292 MT C over 35 years. The proportion of C residing in biomass decreased with time, from 55 percent in 1965 to 38 percent in 2000. Calculated terrestrial C flux for 1993 was -7.5 MT C year-1 and had declined by 17 percent over the previous 18 years. Most of the terrestrial C flux in 1993 was attributed to biomass C reduction. Human disturbance accounted for only 22 percent of biomass C loss in 1993, suggesting that the effects of long-term Sahelian drought continue to play an overriding role in ecosystem change. Some carbon mitigation strategies for Senegal were investigated, including potential C sequestration levels. Opportunities for C mitigation exist but are constrained by available knowledge and access to resources.

Genetic consequences of forest population dynamics influenced by historic climatic variability in the western USA

Westfall, R.D. - Millar, C.I. (2004)

Forest Ecology and Management 197 (1-3): 159-170

ABSTRACT: We review recent advances in climate science that show cyclic climatic variation over multiple time scales and give examples of the impacts of this variation on plant populations in the western USA. The paleohistorical reconstructions we review and others indicate that plant species track these cycles in individualistically complex ways. These dynamic histories suggest that genetic structures are in a non-equilibrium state, with populations constantly lagging their environmental optima. Such dynamism may serve to maintain genetic variation in populations, which may be a hedge against rapid environmental change. We also discuss how population history affects the way we analyze and interpret genetic data and, conversely, the way genetic theory affects historical reconstructions.

Comparing Soil Carbon of Short Rotation Poplar Plantations with Agricultural Crops and Woodlots in North Central United States

Coleman, M.D. ¿ Isebrands, J.G. - Tolsted, D.N. - Tolbert, V.R. (2004)

Environmental Management 33 (Supplement 1): 299-308

ABSTRACT: We collected soil samples from 27 study sites across North Central United States to compare the soil carbon of short rotation poplar plantations to adjacent agricultural crops and woodlots. Soil organic carbon (SOC) ranged from 20 to more than 160 Mg/ha across the sampled sites. Lowest SOC levels were found in uplands and highest levels in riparian soils. We attributed differences in bulk density and SOC among cover types to the inclusion of woodlot soils in the analysis. Paired comparison found few differences between poplar and agricultural crops. Sites with significant comparisons varied in magnitude and direction. Relatively greater SOC was often observed in poplar when native soil carbon was low, but there were important exceptions. Woodlots consistently contained greater SOC than the other crops, especially at depth. We observed little difference between paired poplar and switchgrass, both promising bioenergy crops. There was no evidence of changes in poplar SOC relative to adjacent agricultural soils when considered for stand ages up to 12 years. Highly variable native SOC levels and subtle changes over time make verification of soil carbon sequestration among land cover types difficult. In addition to soil carbon storage potential, it is therefore important to consider opportunities offered by long-term sequestration of carbon in solid wood products and carbon-offset through production of bioenergy crops. Furthermore, short rotation poplars and switchgrass offer additional carbon sequestration and other environmental benefits such as soil erosion control, runoff abatement, and wildlife habitat improvement.

Economic Analyses of Sequestering Carbon in Loblolly Pine, Cherrybark Oak, and Northern Red Oak in the United States

Huang, C.-H. - Bates, R. - Kronrad, G.D. - Cheng, S. (2004)

Environmental Management 33 (Supplement 1): 187-199

ABSTRACT: Global concern over increasing carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations in the atmosphere leading to possible future climate changes have generated interest in offsetting CO2 emissions by storing carbon in forests. Carbon-sequestering forest activities may be one of the least expensive approaches to mitigate the build up of atmospheric CO2. However, the fact that forest management practices are species-, site-and management-objective-specific increases the complexity of using the forestry sector to mitigate global warming. In order to provide useful and timely information concerning carbon sequestration, this study investigated three forestry-based opportunities for sequestering carbon in the United States: conversion of marginal agricultural land to forests and reforestation of poorly stocked pine plantations in the South, afforestation of the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley (LMAV), and reclamation and afforestation of abandoned mined lands (AML). This study conducted economic analyses on three region¿species combinations: loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) in the southern states, cherrybark oak (Quercus pagoda Raf.) in the LMAV, and northern red oak (Quercus rubra L.) on AML in West Virginia. The objectives of this study were to determine the profitability of managing these three commercial tree species for timber production only and for the combination of timber production and carbon sequestration and then calculate net tonnes of carbon stored during one rotation and net revenues generated from each tonne of carbon sequestered.

Nitrogen and Carbon Cycling in a Model Longleaf Pine Community as Affected by Elevated Atmospheric CO2

Torbert, H.A. - Prior, S.A. - Runion, G.B. - Davis, M.A. - Pritchard, S.G. - Rogers, H.H. (2004)

Environmental Management 33 (Supplement 1): 132-138

ABSTRACT: Increasing global atmospheric CO2 concentration has led to concerns regarding its potential effects on terrestrial ecosystem and the long-term storage of C and N in soil. This study examined responses to elevated CO2 in a typical regenerating longleaf pine-wiregrass community. The model community consisted of five plant species: (1) an evergreen conifer (Pinus palustris), (2) a bunch grass (Aristida stricta), (3) a broadleaf tree (Quercus margaretta), (4) a perennial herbaceous legume (Crotalaria rotundifolia), and (5) a herbaceous perennial (Asclepias tuberosa) grown at two CO2 concentrations (ambient and twice ambient). The CO2-enriched plots had greater aboveground biomass than ambient plots, mainly due to increased pine biomass. After 3 years, samples of the soil (Blanton loamy sand: loamy, siliceous, semiactive, thermic Grossarenic Paleudult) were collected from 0- to 5-, 5- to 10-, and 10- to 20-cm depth increments. Microbial respiration, potential C and N mineralization, and C turnover were measured during a 120-day incubation of the soil samples. Elevated CO2 decreased soil C respiration and C turnover, but increased N mineralization. Results indicate that soil C sequestration is likely for soils in this longleaf pine ecosystem.

A Method Countries Can Use to Estimate Changes in Carbon Stored in Harvested Wood Products and the Uncertainty of such Estimates

Skog, K.E. - Pingoud, K. - Smith, J.E. (2004)

Environmental Management 33 (Supplement 1): 65-73

ABSTRACT: A method is suggested for estimating additions to carbon stored in harvested wood products (HWP) and for evaluating uncertainty. The method uses data on HWP production and trade from several decades and tracks annual additions to pools of HWP in use, removals from use, additions to solid waste disposal sites (SWDS), and decay from SWDS. The method is consistent with IPCC guidance for estimating emissions from SWDS. Uncertainty is postulated in the form of probability density functions for 14 variables, using Monte Carlo simulation. Results for the United States suggest that uncertainty is most sensitive to uncertainty in production data for solidwood products, the factor used to convert products to carbon, and the proportion of solidwood and paper in SWDS. Uncertainty in the use (service) life of solidwood products has a limited effect because an error offsets changes in products in use and in SWDS. The method provides a starting point for meeting the aims of the IPCC Good Practice Guidance.

Data Gaps for Monitoring Forest Carbon in the United States: An Inventory Perspective

Birdsey, R. (2004)

Environmental Management 33 (Supplement 1): 1-8

ABSTRACT: There is increasing interest in accurate estimates of regional carbon fluxes, and identification of the causes of land/atmosphere/ocean exchange of carbon. Improved information will lead to better policies for managing greenhouse gas emissions and sequestration. The goals of this paper are to review the capability of ongoing operational inventory programs for estimating forest carbon stocks and stock changes, and to identify opportunities to improve forest carbon monitoring by enhancing these programs and supplementing them with new monitoring capability. Carbon in forest ecosystems and wood products cannot be measured directly. Ongoing forest monitoring programs provide a statistical basis for estimating carbon stocks and stock changes, based on data already collected, with a temporal resolution of about 5 years. Improvements in inventories will shorten the reporting cycle and add some variables that enhance the content with respect to carbon estimation, but it will take about a decade for full implementation. Meanwhile, there is an important role for remote sensing measurements, modeling, and imputation techniques to fill gaps in spatial coverage and content. Elements of the proposed North American Carbon Program, if implemented, will improve the estimates of forest ecosystem carbon.

Temporal evolution of the European forest sector carbon sink from 1950 to 1999

Nabuurs, G.-J. - Schelhaas, M.-J. ¿ Mohren, G.M.J. - Field, C.B. (2003)

Global Change Biology 9 (2): 152-160

ABSTRACT: Estimates of the role of the European terrestrial biosphere in the global carbon cycle still vary by a factor 10. This is due to differences in methods and assumptions employed, but also due to difference in reference periods of the studies. The magnitude of the sink varies between years because of inter-annual variation of short-term climate, but also due to long-term trends in development of the vegetation and its management. For this purpose, we present the results of an application of a carbon bookkeeping model to the forest sector of the European forests from 1950 to 1999. The analysis includes the compartments trees, soils, and wood products. The model uses statistics on European (30 countries excl. CIS) stemwood volume increment, forest area change, fellings, wood products and their international trade, and natural disturbances, supplemented with conversion coefficients, soil parameters and information on management. An (almost uninterrupted) increasing sink (Net Biome Production) in the European forest sector was found, increasing from 0.03 Pg C year-1 in the 1950s to 0.14 Pg C year-1 in the 1990s (for resp. 132 million hectares and 140 million hectares of forest). The sink in the tree and the soil compartment were approximately of the same size until 1970. After the 1970s the size of the sink in the tree biomass increases quickly, causing the tree biomass to account for some two thirds of the total sink in the 1990s. The results as presented here have to be regarded with caution especially with regard to the early decades of the analysis and with regard to the soil compartment.

Modeling carbon sequestration in afforestation, agroforestry and forest management projects: the CO2FIX V.2 approach

Masera, O.R. - Garza-Caligaris, J.F. - Kanninen, M. - Karjalainen, T. - Liski, J. - Nabuurs, G.J. - Pussinen, A. - de Jong, B.H.J. - Mohren, G.M.F. (2003)

Ecological Modelling 164 (2-3): 177-199

ABSTRACT: The paper describes the Version 2 of the CO2FIX (CO2FIX V.2) model, a user-friendly tool for dynamically estimating the carbon sequestration potential of forest management, agroforesty and afforestation projects. CO2FIX V.2 is a multi-cohort ecosystem-level model based on carbon accounting of forest stands, including forest biomass, soils and products. Carbon stored in living biomass is estimated with a forest cohort model that allows for competition, natural mortality, logging, and mortality due to logging damage. Soil carbon is modeled using five stock pools, three for litter and two for humus. The dynamics of carbon stored in wood products is simulated with a set of pools for short-, medium- and long-lived products, and includes processing efficiency, re-use of by-products, recycling, and disposal forms. The CO2FIX V.2 model estimates total carbon balance of alternative management regimes in both even and uneven-aged forests, and thus has a wide applicability for both temperate and tropical conditions. Results for the model testing and validation in selected temperate and tropical forest management systems are presented and discussed.

Energy use and environmental impacts of forest operations in Sweden

Berg, S. - Eva-Lotta Lindholm, E.-L. (2003)

Journal of Cleaner Production 13 (1): 33-42

ABSTRACT: An inventory of energy use in forest operations in Sweden 1996 and 1997 comprises all operations including seedling production, silviculture, logging and secondary haulage to forest industries. Energy use in Swedish forestry was about 150¿200 MJ/m3 of timber, depending on the locality in Sweden. This inventory demonstrates much higher energy use for secondary haulage than was anticipated by earlier studies. In contrast to this, energy use in logging shows a slight decrease compared to the state of operations a decade earlier, possibly reflecting improvements in technology and management. Although secondary haulage operations account for the largest share of the energy used, logging and silviculture generate the highest levels of certain exhaust emissions. Emissions were either fuel-related (CO2, SOx) or engine-related (hydrocarbons, NOx). Use of renewable fuels and improvements in engine design and the better adjustment of engines to forestry operations could decrease these kinds of emissions. The emission of gases that contribute to climate change is very small compared to national emissions. Nevertheless, there is scope for a further decrease of this contribution. Timber is an interesting raw material for alternative fuels, thus enabling a better market prospect for such timber that does not meet the specifications of traditional forest industry.

Environmental benefits of cropland conversion to hybrid poplar: economic and policy considerations

Updegraff, K. - Baughman, M.J. ¿ Taff, S.J. (2004)

Biomass and Bioenergy 27 (5): 411-428

ABSTRACT: To evaluate environmental benefits that might accrue from conversion of farmland to short-rotation woody crops (SRWC), a hypothetical conversion of 10%, 20% and 30% of cropland was modelled in a watershed of the Lower Minnesota River. The analysis synthesized output from a watershed model (ADAPT) with literature-based estimates of productivity and economic values for water quality, forest conservation and carbon sequestration. A Monte Carlo simulation approach was used to estimate ranges of environmental benefit values for cropland conversion to SRWCs. The summed average net benefits justified annual public subsidies ranging from $44 to $96 ha-1, depending on market scenario and conversion level. Cropland conversion to SRWCs reduced cumulative annual stream flows, sediment and nitrogen loadings by up to 9%, 28% and 15%, respectively. Reduced sediment loads resulted in potential average annual public savings on culvert and ditch maintenance costs of $9.37 Mg-1 of sediment not delivered to the watershed outlet. Hybrid poplars over a 5-year rotation produced an estimated annual economic value due to carbon sequestration of $13-15 ha-1 when used for bioenergy and $29-33 ha-1 (depending on conversion rate) when converted to wood products. If hybrid poplars are substituted for aspen traditionally harvested from natural woodlands, the poplars create annual forest preservation values of $4.79-5.44 ha-1.

Rural development by afforestation in predominantly agricultural areas: issues and challenges from two areas in Greece

Kassioumis, K. ¿ Papageorgiou, K. - Christodoulou, Ath. - Blioumis, V. - Stamou, N. ¿ Karameris, Ath. (2004)

Forest Policy and Economics 6 (5): 483-496

ABSTRACT: In light of the increasing mandate for forest expansion through afforestation of arable and degraded land, this attitudinal study explores the perceptions of landowners in Greece regarding forest planting and forest policy related issues, the efficiency of afforestation schemes as well as how new forests are accepted in comparison with agricultural landuse values. Results of a landowner comparative survey undertaken in two varied rural areas in Greece, seek to enlighten why local landowner groups are resistant to the planting of land with trees. This is partly attributed to the long-driven agrarian character of these areas. To some landowners, forestry is envisaged as antagonistic, rather than synergetic to agriculture and thus not socially acceptable. Although it could also be the result of other factors, such as the administrative barriers or limited knowledge available to farmers, the research establishes grant aid funding for forestry as a continuous and potent impetus for farmers to participate in planting schemes in rural areas. Forest policy should involve decisions more related with the regulation of subsidies to buy contributions of forestry to meet environmental and social objectives in addition to the productive ones.

Valuing environmental benefits of silvopasture practice: a case study of the Lake Okeechobee watershed in Florida

Shrestha, R.K. - Alavalapati, J.R.R. (2004)

Ecological Economics 49 (3): 349-359

ABSTRACT: Silvopasture, which combines trees, forages, and shrubs with livestock operations, has potential for limiting phosphorus runoff, sequestering atmospheric carbon dioxide, and improving habitat for wildlife. This study estimates the public demand for these environmental services in south-central Florida¿s Lake Okeechobee watershed using a stated preference approach. The results from a random parameter logit model reveal that households would pay US$30.24¿71.17 per year for 5 years for these environmental benefits. These estimates provide a basis for formulating policies to promote silvopasture practices in the Lake Okeechobee watershed.

Carbon stock changes in successive rotations of Chinese fir (Cunninghamia lanceolata (lamb) hook) plantations

Zhang, X.Q. - Kirschbaum, M.U.F. - Hou, Z. - Zhihua Guo, Z. (2004)

Forest Ecology and Management (Article in press, available online 27 August 2004)

ABSTRACT: Chinese fir is an important timber species in Southern China. Millions of hectares of Chinese fir plantations have been established during the past decades, and increasing areas are re-planted as second or later rotations. Since the 1980s, scientists and forest managers have reported apparent yield decline and soil fertility degradation over successive rotations. If this yield decline is accompanied by a reduction in carbon stocks, and if it is caused by management, it has to be considered as a form of forest degradation and will become important from a carbon-accounting point of view. In this paper we have collected and compiled published data relevant to growth and soil properties over successive rotations of Chinese fir, calculated the stocks of stand biomass and soil organic carbon and nitrogen, and have analyzed the impact on carbon stocks of growing Chinese fir over successive rotations. We found that on an average, stand biomass increments were reduced by 24% from the first to the second rotation, and by a further 40% from the second to the third rotation. Soil organic carbon was reduced by 10% and 15% between the first and second, and second and third rotations, respectively. Soil carbon losses were usually accompanied by nitrogen losses but carbon losses were generally larger than nitrogen losses. The reduction of carbon stocks in successive rotations appears to be related to increases in soil bulk density and nutrient losses caused by burning of residues during site preparation. Potential afforestation/reforestation projects under the clean development mechanism (CDM) of the Kyoto Protocol may also need to consider the possible yield decline and soil degradation over successive rotations of plantations.

Intensive management modifies soil CO2 efflux in 6-year-old Pinus taeda L. stands

Samuelson, L.J. - Johnsen, K. ¿ Stokes, T. Lu, W. (2004)

Forest Ecology and Management (Article in press, available online 23 August 2004)

ABSTRACT: Intensive forestry may reduce net CO2 emission into atmosphere by storing carbon in living biomass, dead organic matter and soil, and durable wood products. Because quantification of belowground carbon dynamics is important for reliable estimation of the carbon sequestered by intensively managed plantations, we examined soil CO2 efflux (SCO2) in a 6-year-old loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) plantation in response to weed control (W), weed control plus irrigation (WI), weed control plus irrigation and fertigation (addition of fertilizer to the irrigation water) (WIF), and weed control plus irrigation, fertigation and pest control (WIFP) since plantation establishment. Average (SCO2) ranged from 1.27 to 5.59 µmol m-2 s-1, and linear models indicated that soil temperature explained up to 56% of the variation in (SCO2). Plot position explained an additional 2¿11% of the variation in (SCO2). Soil moisture was only weakly correlated with (SCO2) in the W treatment, and (SCO2) was not significantly correlated to fine root mass. Predicted carbon loss from forest floor respiration ranged between 778 and 966 g C m-2 year-1 and was 20% lower in the WIF treatment relative to the W treatment. Annual soil carbon loss through soil respiration declined linearly with increasing carbon content in total root biomass (tap + coarse + fine) at age 6.

Tropical deforestation and greenhouse-gas emissions

Fearnside, P.M. - Laurance, W.F. (2004)

Ecological Applications 14 (4): 982¿986

ABSTRACT: A recent (2002) analysis concluded that rates of tropical deforestation and atmospheric carbon emissions during the 1990¿1997 interval were lower than previously suggested. We challenged this assertion with respect to tropical carbon emissions, but our conclusions were disputed by the authors of the original study. Here we provide further evidence to support our conclusion that the effect of tropical deforestation on greenhouse-gas emissions and global warming is substantial. At least for Brazilian Amazonia, the net impact of tropical deforestation on global warming may be more than double that estimated in the recent study.

Carbon sequestration and plant community dynamics following reforestation of tropical pasture

Silver, W.L. - Kueppers, L.M. - Lugo, A.E. - Ostertag, R. - Matzek, V. (2004)

Ecological Applications 14 (4): 1115¿1127

ABSTRACT: Conversion of abandoned cattle pastures to secondary forests and plantations in the tropics has been proposed as a means to increase rates of carbon (C) sequestration from the atmosphere and enhance local biodiversity. We used a long-term tropical reforestation project (55¿61 yr) to estimate rates of above- and belowground C sequestration and to investigate the impact of planted species on overall plant community structure. Thirteen tree species (nine native and four non-native species) were planted as part of the reforestation effort in the mid to late 1930s. In 1992, there were 75 tree species (>9.1 cm dbh) in the forest. Overall, planted species accounted for 40% of the importance value of the forest; planted non-native species contributed only 5% of the importance value. In the reforested ecosystem, the total soil C pool (0¿60 cm depth) was larger than the aboveground C pool, and there was more soil C in the forest (102 ± 10 Mg/ha [mean ± 1 SE]) than in an adjacent pasture of similar age (69 ± 16 Mg/ha). Forest soil C (C3-C) increased at a rate of ~ 0.9 Mg·ha-1·yr-1, but residual pasture C (C4-C) was lost at a rate of 0.4 Mg·ha-1·yr-1, yielding a net gain of 33 Mg/ha as a result of 61 years of forest regrowth. Aboveground C accumulated at a rate of 1.4 ± 0.05 Mg·ha-1·yr-1, to a total of 80 ± 3 Mg/ha. A survey of 426 merchantable trees in 1959 and 1992 showed that they grew faster in the second 33 years of forest development than in the first 22 years, indicating that later stages of forest development can play an important role in C sequestration. Few indices of C cycling were correlated with plant community composition or structure. Our results indicate that significant soil C can accumulate with reforestation and that there are strong legacies of pasture use and reforestation in plant community structure and rates of plant C sequestration.

Carbon balance and vegetation dynamics in an old-growth Amazonian forest

Rice, A.H. - Pyle, E.H. - Saleska, S.R. - Hutyra, L. - Palace, M. - Keller, M. - De Camargo, P.B. - Portilho, K. - Marques, D.F. - Wofsy, S.C. (2004)

Ecological Applications 14 (4) Supplement: S55¿S71

ABSTRACT: Amazon forests could be globally significant sinks or sources for atmospheric carbon dioxide, but carbon balance of these forests remains poorly quantified. We surveyed 19.75 ha along four 1-km transects of well-drained old-growth upland forest in the Tapajós National Forest near Santarém, Pará, Brazil in order to assess carbon pool sizes, fluxes, and climatic controls on carbon balance. In 1999 there were, on average, 470 live trees per hectare with diameter at breast height (dbh) >10 cm. The mean (and 95% CI) aboveground live biomass was 143,7 +/- 5,4 Mg C/ha, with an additional 48,0 +/- 5,2 Mg C/ha of coarse woody debris (CWD). The increase of live wood biomass after two years was 1.40 +/- 0.62 Mg C·ha21·yr21, the net result of growth (3.18 +/- 0.20 Mg C·ha-1·yr-1 from mean bole increment of 0.36 cm/yr), recruitment of new trees (0.63 +/- 0.09 Mg C·ha-1·yr-1, reflecting a notably high stem recruitment rate of 4.8 +/- 0.9%), and mortality (22.41 +/- 0.53 Mg C·ha-1·yr-1 from stem death of 1.7% yr-1). The gain in live wood biomass was exceeded by respiration losses from CWD, resulting in an overall estimated net loss from total aboveground biomass of 1.9 +/- 1.0 Mg C·ha-1·yr-1. The presence of large CWD pools, high recruitment rate, and net accumulation of small-tree biomass, suggest that a period of high mortality preceded the initiation of this study, possibly triggered by the strong El Niño Southern Oscillation events of the 1990s. Transfer of carbon between live and dead biomass pools appears to have led to substantial increases in the pool of CWD, causing the observed net carbon release. The data show that biometric studies of tropical forests neglecting CWD are unlikely to accurately determine carbon balance. Furthermore, the hypothesized sequestration flux from CO2 fertilization (,0.5 Mg C·ha-1·yr-1) would be comparatively small and masked for considerable periods by climate-driven shifts in forest structure and associated carbon balance in tropical forests.

2) Forest and Climate Change News

Scientists: "Anthropocene age" will bring marked environmental instability

A new geological epoch marking man's influence on the planet will see sharper environmental change and drastic effects from global warming, according to a theory its proponents say is growing in acceptance. New computer models reflecting the theory show its possible effects on Earth, including the desertification of the Amazon and the greening of the Sahara.

(from UN Wire)

Growing global consensus on temperature

The U.S. rejection of the Kyoto Protocol aside, there is a growing consensus among developed nations and international business that global warming presents imminent dangers that must be addressed in the near term. Britain has called for 60% reductions in greenhouse gases by 2050 and big petroleum companies are devoting more research monies than ever to hydrogen, wind and solar energy.

(from UN Wire)

Modest climate change could lead to substantially more and larger fires

The area burned by wildfires in 11 Western states could double by the end of the century if summer climate warms by slightly more than a degree and a half, say researchers with the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service and Pacific Northwest Climate Impacts Group at the University of Washington.

(from USDA Forest Service)

UNFCCC workshop Harvested Wood Products Lillehammer Norway 30 August - 1 September 2004

The workshop is being organized in response to a request by the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) at its nineteenth session. In accordance with the conclusions of the SBSTA at its twentieth session, the objective of the workshop is to increase the understanding of issues relating to harvested wood products. Specific topics to be discussed include:

(a) Definitions and scope of estimation, reporting and accounting of harvested wood products, including system boundaries, changes in carbon stocks and emissions in relation to wood products, and the relationship to waste and energy sectors.

(b) Approaches for accounting of harvested wood products and implications of different approaches in Parties included in Annex I to the Convention and Parties not included in Annex I to the Convention, impacts on sustainable forest management and biomass use, impacts on countries that export and import wood, and impacts on trade

(c) Methods for estimation and reporting of wood products, including inventory methods, assumptions, availability of data, classes of wood products, accuracy and uncertainties, feasibility and costs.

Download of presentations:

On page you can find the agenda as well as some presentations of the workshop for downloading:


3) Forest and Climate Change Info & Events

Fifteenth Meeting of the CDM Executive Board

The 15th meeting of the CDM Executive Board was held from 1 - 3 September 2004 in UNFCCC Headquarters in Bonn, Germany and agreed on the following issues relating to procedures for afforestation and reforestation project activities under the CDM:

  • The Project Design Document for Afforestation and Reforestation under the CDM (CDM-AR-PDD)
  • Two forms, i.e. ¿Proposed New Methodology for A/R: Baseline¿ (CDM-AR-NMB), and ¿Proposed New Methodology for A/R: Monitoring¿ (CDM-ARNMM)
  • Guidelines for completing the CDM-AR-PDD, the CDM-AR-NMB and the CDM-ARNMM
  • Revised procedures for submission and consideration of a proposed new methodology
  • for A/R project activities.
  • A draft for ¿Consolidated tools for demonstration of additionality¿.

The meeting report as well as the above mentioned documents can be downloaded at:

International Conference: Modelling carbon sequestration at the landscape level - techniques, models and policy relevance

2-5 November 2004, in Palenque, Chiapas, Mexico

The meeting marks the completion of the EU-funded CASFOR project and aims to provide a forum for discussion of state-of-the-art approaches to carbon sequestration in forest ecosystems and forested landscapes, giving emphasis to techniques and models, as well as to relevant international policy processes such as CDM, UNFCCC-GPG, etc.

We aim to bring together scientists who are involved in the application at stand and landscape level of models for carbon storage and carbon sequestration such as the CO2fix and CO2land models. Model applications to various case studies, model validation as well as model comparisons will receive attention at the conference. Participants are encouraged to bring their own models for demonstration and comparison.

The Conference will include sessions on worldwide applications of the CO2fix and CO2land models, soils, products and bioenergy (Day 1), biomass and competition, crediting and costs, comparisons with other models and measurements (Day 2), modelling at landscape level, CO2land -general principles and illustrative case studies- (Day 3), Future needs and a scientific excursion (Day 4). You will find the detailed programme from these pages later.

Abstract submissions for oral presentations, model demonstrations and posters are to be submitted before the 1st of August. The Conference proceedings will be published as a special issue in Forest Ecology and Management.

The number of participants is limited to 40 persons, with a preference for those individuals that want to report on a model quantifying carbon sequestration in forest ecosystems, or that want to report on an application of a model such as CO2FIX. Because of the restricted capacity of the venue, we recommend registering as soon as possible, in any case before the 1st of August. Please use the registration form that you find below.

On behalf of the organising committee,

Dr. Omar Masera

Dr. Ben de Jong

Prof.dr. Frits Mohren

Mrs. Floor Vodde

The registration form can be downloaded at:

4) New Publications

Value and Risks of Expiring Carbon Credits from CDM Afforestation and Reforestation

Dutschke, M. - Schlamadinger, B. ¿Wong, J.L.P. - Rumberg, M. (2004)


ABSTRACT: The Milan conference of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change has established two types of emission offsets under the Clean Development Mechanism

(CDM), valid for afforestation and reforestation activities. In order to account for the

non-permanent nature of carbon storage in forests, these credits expire after a predefined periods, after which the buyer needs to replace them. The present article

assesses their market value in relation to ¿permanent¿ credits, identifies their specific

risks and proposes how to mitigate and manage them. It analyzes strengths and

weaknesses of expiring credits for sellers and buyers. Taking the example of the EU

emissions trading system, the authors discuss how expiring credits could reach fungibility with permanent emission allowances on domestic markets.

Available at:

CDM and LULUCF: what¿s in it for women?

A note for the Gender and Climate Change Network

Skutsch, M. (2004)

ABSTRACT: The question of what CDM/LULUCF decisions on sinks ¿ afforestation and reforestation projects - taken at COP 9 mean in gender terms has hardly been addressed by anyone so far. This short note attempts to highlight the gender implications of current CDM policy, focusing particularly on the LULUCF sector. Although a primary purpose of CDM may be to reduce atmospheric carbon, for developing countries it is seen as a mechanism for sustainable development. In practice, to the extent that non-annex 1 countries welcome participation in the CDM, this is because it offers a much needed avenue for the acquisition of up to date technology, particularly energy technology, which has a number of (hopefully sustainable) environmental, economic and social benefits other than simply carbon reduction. The gender question that needs to be addressed here is, are the technologies that are likely to be promoted under CDM, and particularly under LULUCF projects under CDM, going to provide environmental, economic and social benefits that meet the particular needs of women? In order to deal with this question, it is first necessary to work through a number of underlying issues, as follows:

  • What kinds of energy technology do most women actually need and want?
  • What have been the difficulties in the past in delivering these technologies?
  • To what extent can CDM and its current LULUCF opportunities be used as a vehicle to overcome these difficulties and resolve women¿s energy problems?
  • Why is CDM/LULUCF so limited in this respect and what are the prospects that it could be altered to be more accommodating, in the future?

The paper can be downloaded at:

Techno-economic assessment of a biomass-based cogeneration plant with CO2 capture and storage

Uddin, N. (2004)

International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) Interim Report IR-04-034

ABSTRACT: Reduction of CO2 emissions from energy systems could be achieved through: CO2 capture and storage, energy savings, fuel switching among fossil fuels, increased use of renewable energy sources, and nuclear power. In addition, atmospheric CO2 reduction could also be achieved through increasing the carbon stock in soils and standing biomass. The CO2 capture and storage option for mitigating CO2 emissions from biomass-based cogeneration plants, considering critical aspects such as future development of technologies, economies of scale, carbon price, site-specific analysis, and future energy systems has received little attention in scientific studies. With the overall objective of improved understanding of the potential scope for its large-scale implementation, a techno-economic assessment of biomass-based cogeneration plants with CO2 capture and storage was carried out.

The results show the optimal scale of the conversion systems with respect to cost of electricity (COE). The optimal size for steam turbine-based cogeneration (CHP-ST) technologies without CO2 capture lies in the range 98¿106 MWe (COE is 5.7 USD/MWh) when fueled by forest/logging residues, but the optimal size increases to 200¿227 MWe for integrated gasification combined cycle based cogeneration (CHPIGCC) (COE is 16.73 USD/MWh). The optimal size range increases considerably to 249¿288 MWe (COE 15.70 USD/MWh) for Salix fueled CHP-ST technology without CO2 capture and 441¿504 MWe (COE 27.52 USD/MWh) for CHP-IGCC technology. With the additional feature of CO2 capture, transport, and storage (here we assume 100 km CO2 transport distance from the plant site) the unit capital cost for CHP-ST and CHP-IGCC technology increases around 70 and 30 percent, respectively. If one considers revenues from trading emission quotas earned through negative emissions one can estimate a market price of CO2 (PC) at which the COE becomes negative (i.e. all capital and operating costs are covered by revenues from heat and negative emissions delivered). Scale effects significantly influence the economic feasibility of CO2 capture. According to the model calculation, the PC at which the COE becomes negative significantly drops from 75 USD/tCO2 for 10 MWe CHP-ST plants to 32 USD/tCO2 for 90 MWe CHP-ST plants when fueled by Salix. The PC drop from 65 USD/tCO2 for 10 MWe CHP-ST plants to 25 USD/tCO2 for 90 MWe CHP-ST plants when fueled by forest/logging residues. For CHP-IGCC plants, the PC decreases from 72.5 USD/tCO2 for 30 MWe to 37.5 USD/tCO2 for 170 MWe when fueled by Salix.

When fueled by forest/logging residue, the PC decreases from 62.5 USD/tCO2 for 30 MWe plants to 30 USD/tCO2 for 170 MWe.

The paper can be downloaded at site:

IDS Bulletin "Climate change and development"

Edited by Farhana Yamin, assisted by Mark Kenber (2004)

Institute of Development Studies, IDS Bulletin Vol. 35, No. 3

The purpose of this issue of the IDS Bulletin is to generate awareness of climate change in the development community and to catalyse discussions about linkages with developmental policies, programmes and international funding priorities. The 19 articles have been prepared by leading development and climate change policymakers, researchers and members of the donor community from across the globe. Collectively, their contributions set out to:

  • look at the implications of the latest scientific assessments of the causes and impacts of climate change for development prospects in the developing countries
  • examine the substantive linkages connections, conflicts and institutional issues between key development issues and climate change which have implications for how climate change can ¿fit¿ into development agendas and
  • focus on what lessons and insights development researchers can provide that might be relevant to climate change based on decades of development theory and practice.

A table of content as well as summaries of the contributions con be obtained at:

5) Climate Change jobs

Research Fellow or Research Associate

Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES)

The Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), a non-profit organization in Japan, is currently in its Third Phase (April 2004-March 2007) of Strategic Research. It is currently seeking applicants for the position of Research Fellow or Research Associate for the Climate Policy project.

Further details on the post and how to apply can be found in the Recruitment Announcement of the following URL.

With best regards,

Hiroyasu TOKUDA


Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES)

Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES)

2108-11, Kamiyamaguchi, Hayama

Kanagawa 240-0115

(from Climate L)

World Bank - Methodology Specialist Carbon Finance Business

Job Number: 200408023

Dept/Div: 07691

Posted Date: 08/06/2004

Closing Date: 09/15/2004

Background: The Methodology and Quality Assurance team (QAT) in the World Bank¿s Carbon Finance Business (CFB) supports the CFB in all matters related to the methodologies for establishing the emission reductions achieved by greenhouse gas reduction projects, in particular in the context of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and Joint Implementation (JI). This includes ensuring that methodologies applied to these projects conform to approved methodologies as well as the development of new methodologies.

The World Bank is a global pioneer in the market for emission reductions. The Bank¿s carbon finance group creates and purchases emission reduction from greenhouse gas reducing investment projects for various governments and private sector entities through our innovative funds and instruments. One aim of these activities is to create knowledge and catalyze the market for emission reductions, while contributing to sustainable development and poverty reduction in Bank client countries. In all CFB projects, the quality and environmental credibility of the emission reductions are a major concern. The methodology and quality assurance team systematically observe the regulatory process and contribute to the bottom-up rule making for CDM and JI, thus bridging the gap between general guidelines and methodologies and their application to real-world projects. On this basis, the CFB shares knowledge and builds capacity for mitigating climate change around the world.

Additional background information on the World Bank¿s Carbon Finance Business is available on .

Job Openings at the Woods Hole Research Center

Senior and Mid-level Scientific Staff Positions

The Woods Hole Research Center seeks to expand its senior and mid-level scientific staff in the fields of hydrology, remote sensing, biogeochemical modeling, and energy policy to complement its expertise in environmental policy, forest ecology, carbon and nitrogen cycling, and land-use change.

Qualifications: Candidates should have a demonstrated ability to work with colleagues from other disciplines and a proven record in publishing, securing research funding, and developing research programs.

Staff of the Woods Hole Research Center work at local, regional, and global scales using the tools of ecology and economics to identify the causes of, and develop solutions to complex environmental problems such as global warming, biotic impoverishment, deforestation, eutrophication, and accumulation of toxins. Emphasis includes the interactions of science and public affairs. The Center has a staff of about 35 members and an annual budget of about $6 million, with support from individuals, private foundations, government, and international agencies.

To apply, send, by mail or fax (508-540-9700 - no email applications), cover letter, resume, and list with name, mailing address, email address, and telephone for three references, to:

Scientist Search

The Woods Hole Research Center

P.O. Box 296, Woods Hole, MA 02543

6) Readers Communications

Launch of Newsletter PeatMatters

Newsletter of the integrated Management of Peatlands for Biodiversity and Climate Change ¿ Project undertaken by Wetlands International and Global Environment Centre

PeatMatters has been developed under the Outreach Component of the Project on Integrated Management of Peatlands for Biodiversity and Climate Change. It is intended to enhance understanding at global level on peatland issues by informing readers of key issues on peatlands, biodiversity and climate change, progress on the project implementation as well as upcoming events and projects.

This first issue focuses on introducing the project and some of the main activities. Features are given on some of the recent international workshops organised and on linkages developed with the environmental conventions. Future issues will showcase some the results from the country components in China, Indonesia and Russia as well as the regional activities in SE Asia. We will include more general news items and feedback from members. This newsletter is one of a number of communication and outreach tools being developed under the project. Other electronic communication mechanisms are the peat-portal web site, and a range of electronic discussion groups - such as the South East Asia (SEA) Peat e-Group which has over 400 members and a new discussion group being established on peatlands and climate change. In addition there are a number of more traditional outreach tools such as posters and leaflets some of which are displayed on page 8 of the newsletter. The project is also developing demonstration sites to showcase good practices.

The distribution list for the newsletter will initially be about 800, but with your assistance we hope that it will grow. Please send us suggestions of those you think would like to be included in the mailing list as well as any issues for inclusion in future issues.

PeatMatters is distributed free to peatland and climate change-related forums, networks, researchers, experts, scientists and interested individuals. To subscribe or receive a free issue, please email to or visit

Best regards,

David Lee

Technical Officer

Global Environment Centre

2nd Floor, Wisma Hing

No. 78, Jalan SS2/72

47300 Petaling Jaya


Tel : +603-7957 2007

Fax : +603-7957 7003


Thank you for your Inputs for this Issue: Christel Palmberg, David Lee


The objective of CLIM-FO-L is to be a forum for sharing current information and experiences about climate change and forestry amongst experts and non-experts. CLIM-FO-L will send periodically to subscribers synopsis of contributions, indicating how to obtain more detailed information on the topic. CLIM-FO-L is a service provided by the FAO Forest Resources Division, Forest Conservation Service (FORC).




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last updated:  Tuesday, November 18, 2008