Title: Global estimates of C stock changes in living forest biomass: EDGARv4.3 –5FL1 time series from 1990 to 2010
Citation: BIOGEOSCIENCES vol. 9 no. 3 p. 3767–3793
Publication Year: 2012
JRC N°: JRC70061
ISSN: 1726-4170
URI: http://www.biogeosciences-discuss.net/9/3767/2012/bgd-9-3767-2012.html
DOI: 10.5194/bgd-9-3767-2012
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: While the Emissions Database for Global Atmospheric Research (EDGAR) focuses on global estimates for the full set of anthropogenic activities, the Land-Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) sector might be the most diverse and most challenging to cover consistently for all world countries. Parties to UNFCCC are required to provide periodic estimates of GHG emissions, following the latest approved methodological guidance by the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The aim of the current study is comparing the IPCC GPG 2003 and the IPCC AFOLU 2006 by calculating the C stock changes in living forest biomass, and then using computed results to extend the EDGAR database. For this purpose, we applied the IPCC Tier 1 method at global level, i.e. using spatially coarse activity data (i.e. area, obtained combining two different global forest maps: the Global Land Cover map and the eco-zones subdivision of the GEZ Ecological Zone map) in combination with the IPCC default C stocks and C stock change factors. Results for the C stock changes were calculated separately for Gains, Harvest, Net Deforestation and Fires (GFED3), for the years 1990, 2000, 2005 and 2010. At the global level, results obtained with the two set of IPCC guidance differed by about 40%, due to different assumptions and default factors. The IPCC Tier 1 method unavoidably introduced high uncertainties due to the "globalization" of parameters. When the results using IPCC AFOLU 2006 for Annex I countries are compared to other international datasets (UNFCCC, FAO) or scientific publications, it emerges a significant overestimation of the sink. For developing countries, we conclude that C stock change in forest remaining forest can hardly be estimated with Tier 1 method. Overall, confronting the IPCC 2003 and 2006 methodologies we conclude that IPCC 2006 suits best the needs of EDGAR and provide a consistent global picture of C stock changes in living forest biomass independent of country estimates.
JRC Institute:Sustainable Resources

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