Environmental Implications of Land Use, Land-Use Change an Forestry (LULUCF) under a Future Climate Regime
To still meet the 2-degree target of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the reduction of emissions from industry and energy industry is not sufficient alone. Emissions from deforestation, especially in the tropics, and unsustainable land uses play a crucial role at global scale.
The parties to the UNFCCC are currently negotiating a new international agreement which should enter into force in 2020 and is applicable to both, industrialized and developing countries. Our research project, which is funded by the German Federal Environment Agency (UBA), advises members of the German Delegation who are involved in land sector negotiations. The project includes the compilation of relevant policy instruments and approaches that can influence carbon fluxes in the forestry and wood sector. We want to identify options for land use guidance on emission reporting and accounting, and analyze and evaluate if these options appear acceptable to all parties under the new climate agreement. The investigated options must be environmentally integer, technically feasible and politically viable. Further they need to provide incentives for the protection of carbon reservoirs and for the promotion of carbon sinks in the land use.
Within the project the Thünen-Institute for International Forestry and Forest Economics focuses on forests in developing countries.
The project contents are closely linked to recent developments in UNFCCC negotiations, and consider both official negotiations as well as informal discussions. In addition to evaluating negotiation positions of parties and publications of relevant players, we create our own calculations for the potential development of forest related emissions with and without a new climate agreement. On this basis, we make recommendations for the design of the new climate agreement.
While for industrialized parties comprehensive emission data from existing reporting requirements is available, this is not the case for developing countries. Here, existing data on forest inventory and forest development must be used, for example, of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations FAO (FAO FRA2010, FAOStat). On this data basis and with existing calculation rules we estimate past and future emissions from deforestation.
In project expert panels and interim reports, we quantify how the accounting of forests affects national CO2 balances. We assess the results with regard to the expected environmental effect, inter alia, on biodiversity and "fairness", and what options thus for a common accounting of forests may be proposed in the land sector.
Results can be found in the project's publications.
11.2012 - 2.2015
Project status: finished