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Research Report

Counting on forests and accounting for forest contributions in national climate change actions

Johnson Nkem
David Oswald
Denboy Kudejira
Markku Kanninen
Copyright Date: Jan. 1, 2009
Pages: 28
OPEN ACCESS
https://www.jstor.org/stable/resrep02287
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. 1-1)

    Climate change is the biggest risk to stable functioning of the Earth system, and ecosystems play critical roles in mitigation of and adaptation to climate change. Ocean and forest ecosystems absorb roughly half of global anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions (Schimel et al. 1996). Changes in temperature affect the rate of ecosystem processes, and elevated levels of carbon dioxide increase the rate of photosynthesis and reduce transpiration (Field et al. 1995; Sellers et al. 1996). Ecosystems are thus an integral part of global climatic processes. There is a dynamic series of feedback relationships that must be considered from an ecosystem...

  2. (pp. 2-2)

    The TroFCCA framework (Figure 1) was consistently used as the standard approach in each country for connecting biophysical processes to the ecosystem level, to the landscape level and to the socioeconomic and policy levels. Country-based analyses, however, recognised the contextual differences that required specific adjustments in the application of the methodologies. For example, in Indonesia and Nicaragua, regional models and geospatial analysis were used at the national level to determine areas of vulnerability and risk to climate impacts. In Burkina Faso, Ghana and Mali, regional studies with direct community involvement were more widely used.

    The study commenced with a review...

  3. (pp. 3-3)

    Climate change risks as determined by each of the countries studied (summarised in Annexes 1 and 5) differed among the seven countries. The key areas in which the study nations are exposed to risks are through increased frequency of forest fires, negative impacts on human health due to respiratory problems, greater uncertainty in carbon stock estimates, negative impacts on agricultural productivity and related agro-industries, more droughts, impacts from higher frequency of high-energy storms, and reduced hydroelectric outputs. Most of the countries directly draw attention to a wide range of climate risks on the forest ecosystem. For example, Honduras and Indonesia...

  4. (pp. 4-5)

    Forest information can be used to explain the linkages between activities and policies related to climate change and other United Nations initiatives such as the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Millennium Development Goals. TroFCCA ecosystem research can be used to explain synergies in adaptation and mitigation objectives, and to provide information on how forests fit into development priorities. Knowledge of ecosystem health and function is essential to clearly define how mitigation through programmes such as REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation plus co-benefits) may work and support adaptation. Adaptation is also dependent on understanding how forest ecosystems...

  5. (pp. 6-7)

    The provision of multiple goods and services by an ecosystem such as forest provides diversity in the range of opportunities that could be used by different countries in addressing their peculiarities and priorities in climate change adaptation, mitigation and vulnerability. Understanding priorities in ecosystem goods and services desired by different communities is crucial in the efficient use of a common response strategy to climate change. Regionally focused ecosystem research can potentially inform development policy, with a view to reducing vulnerability to climate change and climate variability through adaptation strategies.

    Forest information is important in formulating climate-change mitigation and adaptation policy...

  6. (pp. 8-8)

    This meta-analysis highlights the important role that forests can play in formulating national climate-change adaptation policies. The outputs of the TroFCCA project demonstrate, for example, the importance of forests in the supply of water resources. Ecosystems are an integral part of the hydrological cycle at regional and global scales. Climate-change adaptation policies in all regions must consider the role of ecosystems in water provision for industrial applications and human consumption. The role of forests in national carbon budgets and mitigation plans is another factor that is common across the case study countries. Climate-change adaptation policies need to be linked with...