FRA 2010 NEWS 06 


We are pleased to present the sixth issue of the FAO Global Forest Resources Assessment 2010 E-Newsletter, the FRA 2010 News.

In this issue you will find information on the progress of the different components of FRA 2010, on the forest products statistics and on national forest monitoring and assessment systems. It also provides information on the workshops and meetings related to FRA.


  1. The FRA 2010 Country reporting process
  2. The Remote Sensing Survey
  3. Special Studies
  4. Survey on the Global Forest Resources Assessment programme
  5. FRA at the WFC
  6. National Forest Monitoring and Assessment at the WFC
  7. Forest products statistics
  8. UN-REDD
  9. Meetings
  10. Publications   

1. The FRA 2010 Country reporting process

The deadline for the submission of the FRA 2010 final draft Country Reports was the end of May 2009. We would like to thank, once again, all the National Correspondents for all the support provided to the FRA 2010 Reporting process. The degree of participation, the dedication to the reporting process and the level of response, have been beyond expectations.

Thanks to the crucial contribution of the National Correspondents network, we have to date a total of 208 cleared reports. For those countries that did not provide any reports the FRA secretariat prepared a number of desk studies based on new forest-related information whenever possible and on the information previously submitted to the FRA 2005 reporting process.

Now we are aiming for the next important step of the FRA 2010 Country Reporting Process, which is the validation of final Country Reports. The validation will take place during the month of October. An official letter will be sent to the Head of Forestry in each country together with the country report requesting a validation. If no changes or modification are submitted before a given deadline, the reports will be considered validated and the information contained will be used for the data analysis.

We would like to ask all National Correspondents, to kindly check the Head of forestry website (
Please kindly send us a message at: [email protected] in case of any change recently occurred.

2. The Remote Sensing Survey

A new internet based portal for downloading data and uploading results has been released for testing in the FRA 2010 Remote Sensing Survey. Public users can find out about the study and view and download the Landsat data. Authorised national expert users can login and download draft labelled polygons for checking and then upload the validated data and auxiallary information. The portal will be tested in the Pilot Study and ready for use by other countries in 2010. See: http://geonetwork4/geonetwork/srv/en/fra.home.

• FRA Partners at the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission have been very busy preparing the draft land-cover results for samples in the humid tropical countries. Substantial work has been done by staff in many countries to check and validate thousands of images so far and we value their input and experience.
• The first regional training and validation workshops are being organised jointly by JRC and FAO and will be held in Central and Eastern Africa in early October. Participants are coming from 8 countries for the workshop in Kinshasa DRC, and 9 countries in Nairobi, Kenya. A workshop will also be held in Brazil in November. Other countries will be involved in training later in 2009 and in 2010.
• A letter will be sent to National Correspondents (of countries with sample plots) asking them to help identify a suitable focal point for the FRA 2010 remote sensing survey.

Interesting images
This image comes from a FRA sample tile in Spain and shows agricultural land in the southern half of the image and a mixture of natural and planted forests in the north. The high resolution Google Earth image on the right shows a detailed excerpt enabling the planted forest lines to be easily seen which can help with validation. You can find out more and download the Landsat images and files to locate FRA RSS samples in Google Earth from:

3. Special Studies

Forests, Poverty and Livelihoods
A FRA 2010 special study on forests and poverty aims to explore the possibility of showing the spatial links between forests and poverty. It will do this by overlaying geo-referenced forest information with information not only on village location but also on village wealth, as characterised in national censuses, illustrated in sample cases with quick local studies on livelihood cash and non-cash income from all sources, with special reference to forests as well as off–farm resources in general.

The study aims to develop methods which can be applied in conjunction with global, regional and national maps of forest distribution to display the linkages between poverty and forests. The maps will be further informed by the sample of more intensive local scale cases.

Better knowledge of these linkages can be used to develop programmes which target poverty more effectively, and which distinguish appropriate interventions for those living in remote forested regions and those living nearer to markets and roads. This understanding will also generate the chance of better conservation of biological diversity and better management of forest resources. A scoping of the study and identification of potential partners is currently being undertaken by Gill Shepherd.

The number of countries selected for the purposes of this special study will depend on the amount of financial and technical support secured.

If you are interested in contributing to this special study, please contact:
Fred Kafeero, Forestry Officer Participatory Forestry: [email protected]
Sophie Grouwels, Forestry Officer Community-Based Enterprise Development: [email protected]

Assessment and Monitoring of Forest Degradation
A Technical Meeting on “Assessment and Monitoring of Forest Degradation” took place at FAO headquarters in Rome, Italy, from 8 to 10 September 2009.

The objectives of the meeting were to present and discuss an analysis of definitions of forest degradation, and a series of case studies on forest degradation and to recommend actions to improve measurement, assessment and reporting on forest degradation. The meeting provided an opportunity for participants to discuss technical aspects of methodologies for assessing and monitoring forest degradation. The main conclusions were as follows:

  1. Endorsement of the generic definition of “forest degradation” as a “reduction in the capacity of a forest to provide goods and services”;
  2. The many different aspects of forest degradation should be communicated better e.g. to the climate change negotiators;
  3. Attention should be focused on harmonization of definitions and methods for monitoring five aspects of forest degradation: stocking level, biodiversity, forest health, level of use/production and forest soil:
  4. Methodologies do exist to monitor changes in carbon stocks and therefore to include forest degradation in terms of climate change into the proposed REDD mechanism.

There was also a call for the development of tools and guidelines for measuring different aspects of forest degradation. The presentations made at the meeting can be found on the CPF site:

Some selected case studies and the outcome of this Meeting will be also presented at the World Forestry Congress.
For more information contact: [email protected].

4. Survey of the Global Forest Resources Assessment programme 

The FRA Secretariat at FAO Headquarters is conducting an evaluation of the outcomes of the Global Forest Resources Assessment (FRA) programme over the past 5 years. To this end, FRA 2010 National Correspondents and Alternate National Correspondents, as well as staff who contributed in a significant manner towards the FRA country report are encouraged to participate in an online survey. The feedback received will provide us an insight on outcomes achieved and help identify areas of possible future improvements to the FRA programme.

Please take part by completing the online survey available at: (English) (Spanish) (French version)

Should you wish to respond by filling in a Word version of the survey, please contact the FRA Secretariat at [email protected]. We are looking forward to receiving many completed surveys!

5. FRA at the WFC

For those that will be attending the World Forestry Congress in Argentina on 18-23 October 2009, please note that the following events related to FRA and forest assessment and monitoring in general will be organized:

Side event on Forest Degradation
What is it, and can it be measured? Monday 19 October: 18:30 - 20:30
At this event organized by members of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF), there will be a selection of case study presentations from the CPF/FRA 2010 initiative on Forest Degradation. More detailed information related to this event can be found at: 

Deforestation and forest fragmentation. Session 1.2. Tuesday 20 October: 10:45 - 12:15
This is the only session on this sub-theme. There will be five or six presentations on various aspects of deforestation and forest fragmentation from around the world.

Meeting on the FRA 2010 Remote Sensing Survey . Tuesday 20 October: 14:30 - 18:00
Adam Gerrand wishes to meet with participants of the Country Task Force and other partners who happen to be at the WFC.

State of the forests and assessment techniques. Session 1.1.a. Wednesday 21 October: 10:45 - 12:15
There will be three sections on this theme. The first one will focus on field level/national forest inventories (please see more on this session, in the NFMA paragraph below)

State of the forests and assessment techniques. Session 1.1.b. Thursday 22 October: 15:00 - 16:30
This is the second of 3 sessions on this sub-theme and will focus on remote sensing of forests.

State of the forests and assessment techniques. Session 1.1.c Thursday 22 October: 17:00 - 18:00
This is the last of 3 sessions on this sub-theme and will focus on monitoring of forest biodiversity.

Furthermore, an Ad-Hoc FRA Advisory Group Meeting is scheduled to take place on Thursday 22 October (from 9:00 to 12:00), to discuss progress on the country reporting process, the remote sensing survey and the special studies and to seek inputs and views on the FRA 2010 analysis of progress towards SFM).

6. National Forest Monitoring Assessment (NFMA) at the WFC

The FAO NFMA programme is organising three events for the World Forestry Congress.

The first is one of the Technical sessions on “State of the forests and assessment techniques”, focusing on field level/national forest inventories. The following four presentations are scheduled:

  1. Large area forest inventories as potential data sources for the international conventions – issues and options by Prof. Christoph Kleinn et al
  2. The Floristic and forest Inventory of Santa Catarina in Southern Brazil, by Alexander Christian Vibrans et al.
  3. The National Forest Inventory Program of Korea: Findings and Lessons
  4. Measuring and Monitoring Forest degradation Through National Forest Monitoring and Assessment by M. Saket et al.

The second is a side event on “National forest monitoring and assessment: an essential tool for national policies and international reporting”. The following three presentations are scheduled:

  1. FAO National Forest Monitoring Programme (NFMA) – Progress and way forward
  2. Practical NFMA experience from Nicaragua
  3. National Forest Inventory (NFI) System of Brazil – Support to national policies for SFM and international reporting e.g. biodiversity, carbon, REDD, etc.

A round table will be held for brief presentation of four themes namely biodiversity, REDD, Socio-economic information in NFMA and challenges of NFI implementation in Brazil.

Finally there will be the Inaugural meeting of the Advisory Panel for FAO NFMA programme. The meeting will discuss the organization, mandate and functioning of the Advisory Panel as well as the strategy and priorities of the NFMA programme.

7. Forest products statistics

We are pleased to announce the release of the 2007 Forest Products Trade Flows on the Web site: and the release of the publication on "Pulp and Paper Capacities Survey 2008-2013" (see publication list below).


The MRV meeting with UN-REDD countries was held in Rome, 10-11 September 2009. Objectives of the meeting were to share among countries and the programme agencies the current status of MRV tools and information, to share a common vision on strategies for MRV, to present and deliver tools and data for MRV /UN-REDD in each UN-REDD country and to update countries on the development of an MRV toolkit and receive their inputs.

To know more about the event:

9. Meetings

UNECE Timber Committee
The 67th session of the UNECE Timber Committee will take place from 12 to 16 October 2009, in Geneva.

The week begins on 12 October with a green building workshop on “Responding to Climate Change: Wood’s place in a global approach to green building”. On 13-14 October the Timber Committee sessions will start with the annual Market Discussions on “UNECE region forest products markets in a global economic crisis”.

United Nations Climate Change Conference
COP15 is the fifteenth Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Key issues to be discussed include a post Kyoto Protocol Agreement and a mechanism to reduce emission from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countreis (REDD). The conference will take place from 7 to 18 December 2009, in the Bella Center in Copenhagen, Denmark.

To know more about the conference:

The XIII World Forestry Congress will be held from 18 to 23 October 2009 in the city of Buenos Aires and its theme will be “Forests in development: a vital balance.” Around 3200 abstracts and a hundred requests for Side Events from different players in the Forestry Community have been received. These abstracts have now been reviewed and 460 have been selected for development into full papers.

FRA will feature prominently on the agenda, so we hope to see many at you at this important event. To find out more:

10. Publications

The publication "Pulp and Paper Capacities Survey 2008_2013" has recently been released and is available on the Forestry Department website under "Publications"at:









last updated:  Tuesday, November 3, 2009