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Published: 2010

New monitoring system for global forest carbon stocks

An international partnership is building the first global monitoring system capable of producing annual assessments of forest carbon stocks, an advance over the current five-yearly assessment cycle.1

Deforestation contributes up to 20 per cent of humanity’s carbon dioxide emissions.

The new system will monitor changes in specific forest areas more accurately than before, ensuring carbon content data is credible and comparable from one country to another.

The high-tech global tracking system will support the work of policy-makers, the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change and emerging carbon markets.

The work is being led by governments with a strong interest in forest carbon monitoring (Australia, Canada, Japan and Norway). It also involves collaboration between the world’s space agencies – including the European Space Agency and the national agencies of Brazil, Canada, Germany, India, Japan and the USA – through the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites.

Other partners include the UN Food and Agriculture Organization and the Global Observation of Forest and Land Cover Dynamics.

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