1) Research/Publication on Climate Change and Forestry
2) Climate Change News
3) Project
4) Web sites of interest:

No. 15/2001

19 December 2001



1) Research/Publication on Climate Change and Forestry

1. "Expected contribution of sinks to the Kyoto Protocol" by R. Sikkema, pp 8, Joint Implementation Quarterly, Volume 7, 2001. Foundation JIN.

At COP6bis and COP7, the issues of carbon uptake through forest growth, forest soils and agricultural management (Art. 3.4) and through forest activities related to Afforestation, Reforestation and preventing Deforestation (ARD; Art. 3.3), turned out to be a key factor in reaching a final compromise. The author, commissioned via JIN Foundation, supported the calculation process during the negotations. The article describes the backgrounds of the final compromise at COP-6 BIS in Bonn. At COP-7 in Marrakech, a major change occurred at the Russian cap for forest management. This cap has been renegotiated and is now changed to 33 Mton C instead of 17.6 Mton C. Consequently, the total expected contribution of sinks to the Kyoto Protocol will change from 201 Mton C to 216 Mton C".

The article can be downloaded from www.northsea.nl/jiq/ (click on "JIQ October 2001")

2. "What Prospects for Soil Carbon Sequestration in the CDM? COP-6 and Beyond" Lasse Ringius, Energy and Environment vol. 12, no. 4, pp. 275-285. 

Although generally supported by international experts and the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), carbon © sequestration has long been a contentious and difficult issue in global climate negotiations. As the recent sixth Conference of the Parties (COP-6) held in The Hague in November 2000 demonstrated, the `sinks' issue divides both the industrialized countries and the developing countries. To understand the background of the C sink controversy, and in order to assess the political acceptability of direct foreign investments in soil C sequestration in developing countries as an eligible climate policy measure, this paper briefly summarizes the main issues in the international policy debate on sinks. The paper finally analyzes the informal outcomes of COP-6 and attempts to predict the outcomes of the resumed COP-6 (COP-6 bis) to be held in July 2001. 

For more information, contact Lasse Ringius (lasse.ringius@risoe.dk)

3. "Managing Climate Risk" Michael Obersteiner, et.al.

The availability of technological options for adaptation, preventive mitigation, and backstop risk measures will be critical for limiting the risks associated with climate change. Using a modelling framework, it is illustrated that the long-run potential of a permanent sink technology, such as biomass energy in combination with carbon capture and sequestration, is large enough to neutralize historical fossil fuel emissions and satisfy a significant part of global energy and raw material demand.

The authors conclude that a system of climate risk management is practicable and necessary and that increasing deployment of sustainable bioenergy with carbon removal and sequestration, together with structural shift toward low carbon-intensive fuels, will turn out to be instrumental for such a risk-limiting regime and might offer ancillary benefits for sustainable development.

For a summary text and background paper, go to

2) Climate Change News

- 2001 the Second Warmest Year on Record
December 18, 2001 (ENS)

- Scientists see threat of abrupt world climate change December 13, 2001 (Andrew Quinn, Reuters/ENN)

- Climate Change Could Come Quickly, Study Warns December 12, 2001 (Cat Lazaroff/ENS)

- Forests Storing 700 Million Tons Of Carbon Per Year December 12, 2001 (UniSci)

- Earth's cold regions give evidence of global warming December 12, 2001 (ENN)

- Forests eyed for bulk of greenhouse cuts: Two-thirds of Kyoto Protocol reductions hoped to be met via carbon sinks
December 6, 2001 (MICK CORLISS/Japan Times)

- EU approves UK pollution trading, may seek changes November 29 (Reuters/PlanetAark) http://www.planetark.org/dailynewsstory.cfm/newsid/13485/story.htm

- UK Greenhouse Gas Emissions Trading Good to Go November 30, 2001 (ENS) http://ens-news.com/ens/nov2001/2001L-11-30-02.html

- Senate democrats to unveil U.S. energy bill
December 05, 2001 (Reuters/ENN)

- Mexican officials report deforestation worse than previously thought December 04, 2001 (Associated Press/ENN) http://enn.com/news/wire-stories/2001/12/12042001/ap_mexico_45773.asp

- Canadian minister denies government split on Kyoto November 23 (David Ljunggren, Reuters/ENN) http://enn.com/news/wire-stories/2001/11/11232001/reu_45652.asp

3) Project

Carbon sequestration projects in Guatemala

Andrew Roy wrote:

"I worked in Guatemala for 2.5 years from mid 1997. In 1998 and 1999 I was largely involved in a forestry and land based carbon sequestration project in the western highlands of the country around Lake Atitlan, while working with a local NGO called Fundacion Solar. Fundacion Solar is well known internationally, and is affiliated with Winrock International in the US, as well as being a member of UICN. The project explored the opportunities for rural communities to diversify their income and protect the local environment by moving to forestry and agroforestry. This is particularly relevant in Guatemala which is a very mountainous country, and where many subsistence agricultural practices are having a negative environmental impact.   The project was based in the catchment of Lake Atitlan, a beautiful lake surrounded by volcanoes, but threatened by land management within its catchment area. It is one of Guatemala's major tourist destinations. Reforestation and agroforesty activities were seen as the best way to protect the catchment, and the generation of credits under the Clean Development Mechanism was seen as a means of funding a shift to more sustainable land management practices, and diversifying the income of rural indigenous communities.  

There were two stages to the project I was involved in. The first was funded by Technoserve, and was a pilot project with a local organic coffee growing cooperative in the village of San Juan. The second phase broadened the focus and scope of the original project to include the whole southern catchment of the lake (including at least 6 towns and surrounding region) and include other environmental services in the catchment besides carbon sequestration, such as water supply, ecotourism, etc.

The second phase was funded by USAID. The project involved extensive community consultation, field carbon inventories to determine the current and potential carbon stock of the area, and the establishment of a pilot reforestation project. The major output was a funding proposal for project implementation under the AIJ pilot phase of the UNFCCC.   Fundacion Solar were also involved in identifying other opportunities for greenhouse projects in Central America, and while I was there we were involved in developing and facilitating several workshops in both Guatemala and Panama, and hosting visits and training courses for interested organizations from Mexico, El Salvador and Honduras. Participants at the workshops came from all over Central America, Mexico and the US."

A description of the Phase 1 project is available on the Guatemalan Office of Joint Implementation website at:

4) Web sites of interest:

- Global Warming and Climate Change An ENN In-depth Report http://www.enn.com/indepth/warming/index.asp

- Presentations at the IETA Forum on the Future of the Greenhouse Gas Market

Washington D.C., USA, December 3-4, 2001


Funded by European Commission DG Research - V th Framework programme

The objectives of the CarboEurope cluster are to advance the understanding of carbon fixation mechanisms and to quantify the magnitude of the carbon sources/sinks for a range of European terrestrial ecosystems and how these may be constrained by climate variability, availability of nutrients, changing rates of nitrogen deposition and interaction with management regimes. Research focusing on European ecosystem is complemented by investigations of the sink strength of Amazon forests.

An Online Guide to Published Research on Climate Change and Ozone Depletion.

Global Change Digest is a compendium of literature (journal articles, newsletter articles, reports, books) on global change resulting from human activities, particularly climate change and ozone depletion related to anthropogenic activities.

- UNEP's Climate Change Portal

Thank you for your inputs for this issue: Michael Obersteiner, Lasse Ringius, Andrew Roy and Richard Sikkema.

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 Products Division (FOP).




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