Forest CDM in indonesia
 

REDD - Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation


Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in which from herewith shall be referred to as REDD means all forest management activities in order to prevent and or decrease the deterioration of forest cover quantity and carbon stock through various activities to support sustainable national development.

Deforestation means the permanent alteration from forested area into a non-forested area as a result of human activities.

Forest degradation means the deterioration of forest cover quantity and carbon stock during a certain period of time as a result of human activities.

Reference Emission Level means the level of emission from deforestation and forest degradation in the condition of no existing REDD scheme and can be determined based on historical trend or future development scenario.

Carbon trading means trading service activities from forest management activities which results the reduction of emission from deforestation and forest degradation.

The aim of an REDD activity is to prevent and reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in order to enhance forest management.

The objective of an REDD activity is to reduce the occurrence of deforestation and forest degradation in order to achieve sustainable forest management and to increase the welfare of the people.

 




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The Procedure Of Implementation Afforestation And Reforestation Project Under The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) In Indonesia
 
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Wetlands and climate change


The global importance of wetlands

Wetlands encompass a significant proportion of the area of the planet. The global estimate is 1280 million hectares (equivalent to approximately 9% of the land surface) and this is recognised to be an under-estimate (Ramsar STRP, 2005). Wetlands deliver a wide range of critical services, arguably valued at US$14 trillion annually. These include food, fibre, water supply, water purification, regulation of water flows, coast protection, carbon storage, regulation of sediments, biodiversity, pollination, tourism, recreation and cultural services. Their benefits to people are essential for the future security of humankind, and this depends on maintenance of their extent, natural functioning and ecological character.

The principal supply of renewable fresh water for humans comes from an array of wetland types, including lakes, rivers, swamps and groundwater aquifers. Up to 3 billion people are dependent on groundwater as a source of drinking water, but abstractions increasingly exceed recharge from surface wetlands. Increasing demand for, and over-use of, water is jeopardising human well-being and the environment. Access to safe water, human health, food production, economic development and geopolitical stability are made less secure by the degradation of wetlands, driven by the rapidly widening gap between water demand and supply. Water governance urgently needs to be reformed: instead of being demand-driven, which promotes over-allocation of water, it should treat wetlands as our “natural water infrastructure”, integral to water resource management at the scale of river basins.

The degradation and loss of wetlands is more rapid than rates for other ecosystems (Ramsar STRP, 2005). Similarly, the status of both freshwater and, to a lesser extent, coastal species is deteriorating faster than that of species in other ecosystems. These trends have primarily been driven by land conversion and infrastructure development, water abstraction, eutrophication, pollution and over-exploitation. There are a number of broad, interrelated economic reasons, including perverse subsidies, why wetlands continue to be lost and degraded. This is leading to a reduction in the delivery of wetland ecosystem services, yet demand for these same services is projected to increase. Addressing this is of critical importance for achieving the Millennium Development Goals.

Impacts of climate change on wetlands

Literature on climate-wetlands interactions, as well as dealing with the role of wetlands in climate change effects, mitigation and adaptation, also covers the impacts on wetlands from climate change, and from climate change policies. Globally, the negative impacts of climate change on freshwater systems are expected to outweigh the benefits (Bates et al, 2008). Key review documents covering this are included in the reference list given at the end of this paper; but these aspects (ie impacts on wetlands) are not addressed further here, since the focus of this review is instead on the role of wetlands in potential responses.

Greenhouse gas emissions

Wetlands play a sometimes crucial role in regulating exchanges to/from the atmosphere of the naturally-produced gases involved in “greenhouse” effects, namely water vapour, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide (all associated with warming) and sulphur dioxide (associated with cooling). They tend to be sinks for carbon and nitrogen, and sources for methane and sulphur compounds, but situations vary widely from place to place, from time to time, and between wetland types (for more detail see Ramsar Secretariat, 2002 and Lloyd, in prep). (Overall, the long-term negative effect of methane emissions is lower than the positive effect of CO2 sequestration -

Wetland land-use, and discharge, treatment and re-use of waste water can all have profound effects on emissions and hence on the success of mitigation and adaptation strategies. The most robust generalisation is that degradation and disturbance of naturally-functioning wetlands can be (and already is) a major cause of increased carbon emissions (Ramsar Secretariat et al, 2007).

One of the best documented dimensions of this relates to peatlands, where the delicate balance between anaerobic production and aerobic decay causes them readily to switch from carbon sinks to sources following human interventions. Peatland degradation is now a major and growing cause of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions, with drainage, fires and extraction releasing an estimated minimum of 3,000 million tonnes per annum (two-thirds of which is from southeast Asia, mostly Indonesia, consisting of 600 Mt from decomposition and 1400 Mt from fires), equivalent to more than 10% of the global total (Parish et al, 2008).

Carbon capture and storage

Wetlands have always sequestered carbon and decomposed to produce carbon dioxide and methane; but their effect upon future climate change depends on how these processes depart from historical steady-state rates of production (Lloyd, in prep). Wetlands are different from other biomes in their ability to sequester large amounts of carbon, as a consequence of high primary production and then deposition of decaying matter in the anaerobic areas of their waterlogged soil. In such soils the normal production of carbon dioxide that occurs during decomposition is slowed or completely inhibited by the lack of oxygen; although these same conditions are also conducive to the production of methane.

It is the interplay between waterlogging, high plant productivity, sequestration of carbon in the soil, and production of carbon dioxide and methane that makes wetlands one of the most important terrestrial surfaces in climate change; complicated by the fact that different wetland types have markedly different greenhouse gas and carbon balance profiles (Lloyd, in prep). Climate change may itself of course also affect the wetland carbon sink, although the direction of the effect is uncertain due to the number of climate-related contributing factors and the range of possible responses (Ramsar Secretariat, 2002).

Sources estimate that wetlands account for about one-third of terrestrial carbon stores (Ramsar Secretariat, 2002). There is however a dearth of consolidated information on the role and importance of different types of wetlands and in different parts of the world in carbon sequestration and storage. Lloyd (in prep) reviews available information on a range of different types and regions, the implications for future storage and emissions under a changing climate, and gaps in knowledge. It is anticipated by the Ramsar Convention, whose Scientific & Technical Review Panel (STRP) commissioned Lloyd’s work, that his report will assist countries in identifying which wetlands play a particularly significant role in climate change mitigation and adaptation, and should thus be a focus of attention for maintenance and restoration. It has been claimed that restoration of wetlands offers a return on investment up to 100 times that of alternative carbon mitigation investments (Ramsar Secretariat et al, 2007).

Peatlands are the most important long-term carbon store in the terrestrial biosphere. Although covering only 3% of the world's land area, peatlands contain as much carbon (400-700 Gt) as all terrestrial biomass, twice as much as all global forest biomass, and about the same amount as is in the atmosphere (Parish et al 2008). Intact peatlands can store up to 1,300 tons of carbon per hectare, compared to 500-700 tons in old-growth forests (Pena, 2008). They account for the majority of all carbon stored in wetland biomes worldwide. This would, if all converted to carbon dioxide, increase the atmospheric concentration of CO2 by 200 ppm (Lloyd, in prep).

Although peatlands are known to be an overall sink for carbon, and in many regions are still actively sequestering it (Ramsar Secretariat, 2002), initial studies produced a confusing picture of this, with some sites appearing as carbon sinks and others as sources. As research studies have lengthened, a picture of interyear variability has become more apparent, with climatic and hydrological variability acting to switch the balances. There are now many long-term studies of overall carbon dioxide and methane exchange in temperate and northern peatlands which highlight the complex nature of the interaction between the various plant and soil components at work. Figures for different peatlands vary greatly: from a carbon uptake of more than 220g CO2 m-2 yr-1 to losses of 310g CO2 m-2 yr-1. This complexity and range of variation will complicate any general predictions (Lloyd, in prep).

Peatland degradation is now a major and growing cause of loss of global carbon storage capacity. In addition to the contribution this makes to the global problem, the large size of some of the areas, for example in the northern hemisphere tundra and taiga zones, can result in modifications to energy, water, and gas fluxes that change local and regional climate, with local feedback effects (eg through increased incidence of fires) which exacerbate further emissions.

Any action that would avoid degradation of these wetlands would therefore be a beneficial mitigation option. Peatland restoration and mitigation programmes are beginning in Europe and north America. Mitigation is the most that can probably happen in the short-term as the current plant species are largely incapable of increasing production in response to higher temperatures and atmospheric CO2 concentrations (Lloyd, in prep). Nonetheless, Erwin (2009) reports research in Canada showing a reduction in the magnitude of CO2 losses from cutover peatlands after restoration and revegetating, and to other evidence of the switching of the carbon balance of Finnish cutover peatlands from sources to sinks within a few years of restoration. Wetlands International (2008b) report similar results from pilot projects in south-east Asia, Russia, Argentina and the Himalayas, indicating that relatively minor investments have significant emission reduction impacts. Carbon sequestration benefits should result from restoration of areas of other wetland types too (eg mangroves, saltmarshes, floodplain marshes), but there are as yet few documented case experiences relating to these.

Sea level rise

Coastal wetlands will play a major part in strategies for dealing with problems created by sea level rise. Mangrove forests, coral reefs and tidal flats can attenuate wave-energy and contribute to coast defences in a more cost-effective way than hard defences, providing enhanced protection against increasingly frequent storm-events as well as rising sea levels. In the Asian tsunami of 2004, areas behind intact mangrove forests and coral reefs were less affected than areas that lacked these natural physical buffers (Wetlands International, 2008a).

In addition to physical damage, inundation (causing loss of productive or otherwise valuable areas), upstream and underground salinisation (causing loss of freshwater supplies) and other impacts can also be lessened through maintenance or restoration of naturally-functioning coastal hydrology and wetland ecosystems.

Moreover, land-use change and hydrological modifications anywhere in a water catchment or river basin may have downstream impacts which interact in the coastal zone with sea level rise risk factors. Changes in marine sediment cycles (affecting erosion and deposition rates, with huge economic impacts eg in delta regions), abstraction of water (affecting groundwater salinisation), lowering of water tables and subsidence (exacerbating seawater inundation), may all be involved (Bates et al, 2008). Integrated planning (as advocated in many technical and policy guidance materials adopted over the years under the Ramsar Convention in particular) is essential here.

Water management

Demand for water worldwide has more than trebled since 1950 and is projected to double again by 2035 (Postel, 1997, cited in Erwin, 2009). Globally, the area of land classified as “very dry” has more than doubled since the 1970s. Under climate change scenarios, some areas are projected to become wetter, others drier: precipitation is due to increase in high latitudes and parts of the tropics, and to decrease in some subtropical and lower mid-latitude regions. Water supplies stored in glaciers and snow cover are projected to decline, thus reducing water availability in regions supplied by meltwater from major mountain ranges, affecting more than one-sixth of the world’s population (Bates et al, 2008).

Climate change is increasing the levels of uncertainty in water management, and making it more difficult to close the gap between water demand and supply. Irrigation already comprises 70% of water used globally, and this may increase under climate change and food production scenarios. The effects of climate change will increasingly be felt most directly through changes in the distribution and availability of water (Bates et al, 2008).

Adaptation options designed to ensure water supply during average and drought conditions require integrated demand-side as well as supply-side strategies. An expanded use of economic incentives to encourage water conservation, development of water markets and implementation of virtual water trade holds considerable promise for water savings and the reallocation of water to highly valued uses (including wetland-based climate change mitigation measures). Supply-side strategies generally involve increases in storage capacity, abstraction from watercourses, and water transfers. More integrated water resources management on the other hand provides an important framework for achieving adaptation measures across socio-economic, environmental and administrative systems (Bates et al, 2008). Once again, maintenance of the ecological character and ecosystem services provided by wetlands offers the clearest route to sustainable outcomes.

Other wetland services

Wetlands buffer climate change impacts and play a role in mitigation and adaptation strategies in some additional ways too. One of these is in the biodiversity and other non-water resources they provide for people, especially the poor, who may be affected by climate change through loss of agricultural land or productivity, or through being displaced from areas they normally live in or use.

Naturally-functioning wetlands regulate and buffer fluctuations in water levels over seasonal flood patterns, and this function may be doubly important where these patterns become disrupted. Conversely, loss of this functionality increases risks, as has been seen for example with the reduced ability of many highaltitude wetlands in the Himalayas (through erosion, siltation, overgrazing and mining) to store water after heavy rainfall, which was implicated in the longlasting floods in northern India in 2007 (Wetlands International, 2007).

Climate change itself of course is one threat to the ability of wetlands to deliver all the services mentioned in this paper, and it can exacerbate the effects of other stressors, often in a non-linear way. Current water management practices may not be robust enough to cope with the impacts of climate change on wetland services - indeed in many places, such practices cannot satisfactorily cope even with current climate variability, leading to major problems of floods and droughts. As a first step, improved incorporation of information about current climate variability into water-related management (and wetland restoration) would assist adaptation to longer-term climate change impacts (Bates et al, 2008; Erwin, 2009).

Wetlands are therefore vital parts of the “natural infrastructure” needed for addressing climate change, Degradation and loss of wetlands make climate change worse and leave people more vulnerable to its impacts. Conservation and restoration of wetlands, and safeguarding their resilience and range of functions, are therefore effective climate adaptation strategies (Erwin, 2009). According to Wetlands International (2007), “strategies for adaptation to climate change that do not address the continuing crisis in wetlands loss and degradation will have real limitations, and could result in maladaptation and reduced resilience”. By the same token, appropriate responses may not only address climate change impacts but could provide "win-win" benefits in relation to other problems caused by wetland loss and degradation.

Conversely, climate change responses involving afforestation/reforestation, bioenergy crops, hydrodams etc, if carried out without due regard to their consequences for the water cycle and other wetland functions, may be unsustainable and may do more harm than good.

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Source :
Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development.
Dave Pritchard, March 2009

     
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