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Land use, land use change and forestry (LULUCF) have been estimated to account for at least 20% of total global greenhouse gas emissions contributing to global warming and climate change (the majority of these LULUCF emissions are released through tropical forest clearing and forest fires). However, a variety of land uses employed by farmers and foresters have the potential to curb the effects of climate change by serving as net sinks of carbon and other greenhouse gases.
After being excluded from Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) for the first commitment period, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) mechanism began a serious dialogue on reduced emissions from deforestation in December 2005. ASB results have important potential to influence the shape of that mechanism and longer-term opportunities to support the effective implementation of the reduced emissions mechanism (see reduced emission from deforestation).
Research of the ASB Working Group on Climate Change determined those land-use systems that sequester more carbon and reduce trace gas emissions via:
1) quantification of above- and belowground carbon stocks in different land-use systems following forest clearing, and
2) quantification of net greenhouse gas emissions from these different land-use systems.
By linking these results to profitability data collected by other ASB researchers, it has been possible to look at the trade-offs that exist between global environmental benefits and the local economic benefits to farmers.
See the ASB Climate Change Working Group Final Report, Phase II: Carbon sequestration and trace gas emissions in slash-and-burn and alternative land uses in the humid tropics, November 2000 and ASB Carbon stocks dataset.
|Trade-offs between global environmental benefits and the local economic benefits to farmers.|