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Institute of

WO Forest Ecosystems




Carbon Inventory 2017

© Thünen-Institut für Waldökosysteme

Carbon Inventory 2017

Forests are important carbon pools. The aim of the Carbon Inventory 2017 is to determine the carbon stocks changes in living biomass and dead wood in the forests during the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol for the whole of Germany.

Background and Objective

Germany is legally oligated to provide annually the National Inventory Report for the German Greenhouse Gas Inventory due to the convention on climate change, the Kyoto protocol and the EU decision 280/2004/EC.

The reporting includes among the other sectors Energy, Industrial Processes, Solvent, Agriculture and Waste, the bilances for carbon sinks and sources for the sector Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry too.

The calculation of carbon sinks and sources in German forest are based on data from the National Forest Inventory (NFI) and the German Soil Condition Survey in Forest. To meet the good practice guidelines Carbon Inventories are conducted in addition to the regular NFI, which will repeated every 10 years . These Carbon Inventories are identical to the NFI in Methodology but are concentrated on relevant pools for the reporting only, like above-ground and below-ground living biomass and dead wood.

The carbon inventory 2017 aims at:

  1. the survey of storages and their changes in the relavant carbon pools
  2. the tracking of geographic explicit land use changes
  3. the development of survey methods for the next NFI

and acts as an inventory on a sub-sample between two regular NFI


For the Carbon Inventory 2017 methods and software from the National Forest Inventory are used. The inventory method and the data collection are described in a field manual . For the data collection in the field we use our special data collection software.

Our Research Questions

How much carbon is stored in living biomass and in dead wood in 2017?

Did the carbon storage increase or decrease since 2012?

In which way changed the forest conditions in Germany, e.g. the tree species composition, the growing stock?

New IT- and measurement technologies will tested for possible  further application in the next regular NFI.


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    Gschwantner T, Alberdi I, Bauwens S, Bender S, Borota D, Bosela M, Bouriaud O, Breidenbach J, Donis J, Fischer C, Gasparini P, Heffernan L, Herve J-C, Kolozs L, Korhonen KT, Koutsias N, Kovacsevics P, Kucera M, Kulbokas G, Riedel T, et al (2022) Growing stock monitoring by European National Forest Inventories: Historical origins, current methods and harmonisation. Forest Ecol Manag 505:119868, DOI:10.1016/j.foreco.2021.119868

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    Alberdi I, Bender S, Riedel T, Avitable V, Bouriaud O, Bosela M, Camia A, Canellas I, Castro Rego F, Fischer C, Freudenschuß A, Fridman J, Gasparini P, Gschwantner T, Guerrero S, Kjartansson BT, Kucera M, Lanz A, Marin G, Mubareka S, et al (2020) Assessing forest availability for wood supply in Europe. Forest Pol Econ 111:102032, DOI:10.1016/j.forpol.2019.102032

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    Schwitzgebel F, Riedel T (2019) Die Kohlenstoffinventur 2017 - Methode, Durchführung, Kosten. AFZ Der Wald 74(14):19-21

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    Röhling S, Demant B, Dunger K, Neubauer M, Oehmichen K, Riedel T, Stümer W (2019) Equations for estimating belowground biomass of Silver Birch, Oak and Scots Pine in Germany. iForest 12(2):166-172, DOI:10.3832/ifor2862-012

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    Gschwantner T, Alberdi I, Balazs A, Bauwens S, Bender S, Borota D, Bosela M, Bouriaud O, Canellas I, Donis J, Freudenschuß A, Herve J-C, Hladnik D, Jansons J, Kolozs L, Korhonen KT, Kucera M, Kulbokas G, Kuliesis A, Riedel T, et al (2019) Harmonisation of stem volume estimates in European National Forest Inventories. Ann Forest Sci 76:24, DOI:10.1007/s13595-019-0800-8

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    Hennig P, Schnell S, Riedel T (2019) Produktivität der Wälder. AFZ Der Wald 74(14):28-31

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    Hennig P, Schnell S, Riedel T (2019) Rohstoffquelle Wald - Holzvorrat auf neuem Rekord. AFZ Der Wald 74(14):24-27

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    Riedel T, Hennig P (2019) Wald- und Holzbodenfläche unverändert. AFZ Der Wald 74(14):22-23

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    Riedel T, Stümer W, Hennig P, Dunger K, Bolte A (2019) Wälder in Deutschland sind eine wichtige Kohlenstoffsenke. AFZ Der Wald 74(14):14-18

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    Schnell S, Riedel T, Oehmichen K (2018) Integration von Fernerkundungsdaten in die Auswertung der Bundeswaldinventur. In: Ammer C, Bredemeier M, Arnim G von (eds) FowiTa : Forstwissenschaftliche Tagung 2018 Göttingen ; Programm & Abstracts ; 24. bis 26. September 2018. Göttingen: Univ Göttingen, Fakultät für Forstwissenschaften und Waldökologie, p 438

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    Riedel T, Hennig P, Kroiher F, Polley H, Schmitz F, Schwitzgebel F (2017) Die dritte Bundeswaldinventur : BWI 2012 ; Inventur- und Auswertungsmethoden. Berlin: Bundesministerium für Ernährung und Landwirtschaft (BMEL), 115 p

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    Riedel T, Kändler G (2017) Nationale Treibhausgasberichterstattung: Neue Funktionen zur Schätzung der oberirdischen Biomasse am Einzelbaum. Forstarchiv 88(2):29-56, DOI:10.4432/0300-4112-88-31

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    Riedel T, Demant B, Hennig P, Neubauer M, Polley H, Schwitzgebel F (2016) Aufnahmeanweisung für die Kohlenstoffinventur 2017 (CI 2017) : 1. Auflage, Juli 2016 (Version 1.2). Bonn: Bundesministerium für Ernährung und Landwirtschaft (BMEL), 84 p

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    Redmond JJ, Gschwantner T, Riedel T, Alberdi I, Vidal C, Bosela M, Fischer C, Hernández L, Kucera M, Kuliesis A, Tomter SM, Westman M, Lanz A (2016) Comparison of wood resource assessment in National Forest Inventories. In: Vidal C, Alberdi I, Hernández L, Redmond JJ (eds) National forest inventories : assessment of wood availability and use. Cham: Springer International Publ, pp 25-53, DOI:10.1007/978-3-319-44015-6_2

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    Riedel T, Polley H, Klatt S (2016) Germany. In: Vidal C, Alberdi I, Hernández L, Redmond JJ (eds) National forest inventories : assessment of wood availability and use. Cham: Springer International Publ, pp 405-421, DOI:10.1007/978-3-319-44015-6_21

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    Alberdi I, Gschwantner T, Bosela M, Redmond JJ, Riedel T, Snorrason A, Gasparini P, Braendli UB, Fridman J, Tomter SM, Kulbokas G, Lanz A (2016) Harmonisation of data and information on the potential supply of wood resources. In: Vidal C, Alberdi I, Hernández L, Redmond JJ (eds) National forest inventories : assessment of wood availability and use. Cham: Springer International Publ, pp 55-79

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