Climate and Forest Monitoring
Measuring forest growth and carbon storage
This task includes forming a team of three experts who will, at regular intervals record the degree of forest fragmentation, growth or shrinking of forest borders and biomass. In so doing they will quantify the effects of the project on CO² emissions. The international REDD expert will accompany forest monitoring at the conception and implementation stages by carrying out short-term operations, and is available as a “Backstopper”.
At the start of the project, a Reference Emission Level (REL) of deforestation in the project region will be taken, using available Landsat data. Forested areas that were not covered by Landsat at the necessary period, or which are unusable due to heavy cloud-cover will be completed using Aster or Spot data. Attempts will also be made to produce a REL for degradation using old forest inventory data. Additionally to this, the forests area and above-ground biomass will be determined at the start of the project in order to record the projects influence on deforestation and forest degradation long-term. This includes analysis of the fresh Landsat data from 2009, supplemented if necessary by Rapid Eye and/or Spot satellite data, as well as set up of a permanent sample plot system.
The forest inventory and monitoring concept will be drawn up by international experts at project outset. It is assumed that a sampling system with a 4 x 4 kilometer grid or maybe more compact will be used. Since degradation should be measured it is sampled without stratification. After two years and at project end the forest inventory will be repeated for the same purpose. To ascertain whether project measures are simply leading to a spatial displacement (Leakage) of deforestation and forest degradation, forested areas up to 20 kilometers around the forests of the project area will also be recorded as part of the inventory.
Beyond that it will be investigated if concessions for timber extraction and plantations which were hindered by the creation of the biosphere reserve (BR) are being granted elsewhere (i.e. areas outside the BR). The Leakage monitoring is limited to the Kafa region.
The project's conclusion report will compare CO² emissions avoided over the period of the project with the REL, as well as report on displacement effect. To measure the direct influence of project measures on avoiding and additional capture of CO², the team will carry out annual progress checks on reforested and rehabilitated areas and calculate the scale of increased capture and storage capacity.
The investigation will therefore require employing the services of national forest and climate experts and local guides for field surveys alongside the international experts (KZE). Coupled with this is the purchase of work material such as high-resolution satellite photographs and software (e.g. ERDAS, eCognition). Together with the national experts the international experts will work out a standard monitoring and inventory methodology and school colleagues at the BR in how to do it, in order to ensure forest monitoring continues even after the end of the project. This includes monitoring of rehabilitated and reforested areas as well as of existing PFM areas, which already use other forms of forest monitoring. The calculation of costs is based on similar activities in the project region and up-to-date studies on REDD monitoring.