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FAO to develop and implement forest monitoring system in Sudan


Khartoum – FAO has launched a two and half-year USD 1.27 million project to develop and implement a national monitoring and reporting system for Sudan’s forests in the framework of REDD+ Readiness in Sudan.

Since the last national forest inventory which was conducted in 1998, Sudan witnessed many political, economical, technological, social and climatic changes. This explain the necessity to update the national forest data base, which in turns facilitate the proper planning and development of the forestry sector.

The “Inventory of Forest Resources for REDD+ Readiness in Sudan” project will provide technical assistance to the Government of Sudan to establish a national reference scenario and inventory of forest resources. In doing so, FAO will work to institutionalize the use of an effective monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) system and strengthen the capacity of key institutions to build the foundation needed for future: i) operationalization of Forest Monitoring System, ii) calculation of a national reference emission level (REL)/reference level (RL), and iii) generation of robust forest data feeding into the National Greenhouse Gas Inventory and National Communications/Biennial Updates to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)..

The project will support data collection and measurement activities underpinning the Sudan Forest Monitoring System. In line with relevant UNFCCC decisions and IPCC guidelines, the project will support Sudan to use a combination of remote sensing and ground based forest carbon inventory approaches for estimating forest-related GHG emissions by sources and removals by sinks, forest carbon stocks and forest area changes.

This work is part of FAO Sudan’s commitment to support the Government of Sudan to implement the United Nations Collaborative Programme on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Developing Countries (REDD+). The project is funded by the World Bank through its Forest Carbon Partnership Facility. FAO Sudan will implement the project in collaboration with the Forest National Corporation (FNC) of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. The development of a national MRV system on national forests will ensure that the government has the capacity and data it needs to effectively monitor, report and verify its REDD+ activities.

“FAO is extremely pleased to be partnering with the World Bank and the Government of Sudan to advance the protection of Sudan’s forests through the country’s first national forest monitoring and inventory system after secession of South Sudan,” said Dr. Abdi Adan Jama, FAO Representative in Sudan. “Forests are a key source of food and income for millions of people in Sudan. The development of a national MRV system is essential to the stainable management of Sudan’s forests, which is an integral part of Sudan’s food security and resilience to climate change in the coming years.”

In the last 20 years, Sudan’s forest and woodlands have disappeared at an alarming rate: From 1990 to 2000 forest cover decreased at a rate of 598 000 hectares/year, and 54 000 hectares/year from 2000-2010. The biggest direct driver of this loss has been the conversion of natural forests to cropland and pasture. Some 17 million hectares have been converted into mechanized and traditional rain-fed and irrigated agriculture during the period 1940-2012. Energy consumption is another key driver of forest degradation in Sudan, with the demand for wood fuel increasing over the last 20 years due to rapid population growth and supply shortages of other forms of energy. Wood fuel currently provides between 70-81 percent of the national energy supply.