You are on page 1of 58




This publication was produced for review by the United States Agency for
International Development. It was prepared by Tetra Tech.

This publication was produced for review by the United States Agency for International Development by Tetra Tech ARD,
through a Task Order under the Prosperity, Livelihoods, and Conserving Ecosystems (PLACE) Indefinite Quantity
Contract Core Task Order (USAID Contract No. EPP-I-00-06-00008-00, Order Number AID-OAA-TO-11-00022).

Tetra Tech
159 Bank Street, Suite 300
Burlington, Vermont 05401 USA
Telephone: (802) 658-3890
Fax: (802) 658-4247

Tetra Tech Contacts:
Ian Deshmukh, Senior Technical Advisor/Manager

Forest Carbon, Markets and Communities (FCMC) Program
1611 North Kent Street
Suite 805
Arlington, Virginia 22209 USA
Telephone: (703) 592-6388
Fax: (866) 795-6462

Stephen Kelleher, Chief of Party

Olaf Zerbock, USAID Contracting Officer’s Representative

• Jennifer Hewson, Conservation International
• Marc Steininger, FCMC & Conservation International
• Stelios Pesmajoglou, Greenhouse Gas Management Institute

Contributing authors:
• Angel Parra, Consultant; GHG inventory & LULUCF sector expert
• Gordon Smith, Greenhouse Gas Management Institute
• David Shoch, TerraCarbon, LLC
• John Musinsky, National Ecological Observatory Network
• Fred Stolle, World Resources Institute
• Kemen Austin, World Resources Institute
• Irene Angeletti, Greenhouse Gas Management Institute

The US Agency for International Development (USAID) has launched the Forest Carbon, Markets and Communities
(FCMC) Program to provide its missions, partner governments, local and international stakeholders with assistance in
developing and implementing REDD+ initiatives. FCMC services include analysis, evaluation, tools and guidance for
program design support; training materials; and meeting and workshop development and facilitation that support US
Government contributions to international REDD+ architecture.

Please cite this report as:
Hewson, J., M.K. Steininger and S. Pesmajoglou, eds. 2014. REDD+ Measurement, Reporting and Verification (MRV) Manual,
Version 2.0. USAID-supported Forest Carbon, Markets and Communities Program. Washington, DC, USA.





The author’s views expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the
views of the United States Agency for International Development or the United
States Government.


TABLE OF CONTENTS....................................................................................... III
ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS ...................................................................... V
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ................................................................................... VIII
1.0 INTRODUCTION....................................................................................... 1
1.1 PURPOSE, SCOPE AND STRUCTURE ...................................................................................... 1
1.2 BACKGROUND ............................................................................................................................... 4
1.3 REFERENCES...................................................................................................................................... 8
2.0 INSTITUTIONAL ARRANGEMENTS.............................................................. 9
2.1 INTRODUCTION ............................................................................................................................ 9
2.2 ELEMENTS OF A MRV SYSTEM FOR REDD+ .......................................................................13
2.4 STEPS IN ESTABLISHING INSTITUTIONAL ARRANGEMENTS.....................................19
2.5 EXAMPLES ........................................................................................................................................22
2.6 EPA NATIONAL SYSTEM TEMPLATES ...................................................................................26
2.7 REFERENCES....................................................................................................................................30
3.1 INTRODUCTION ..........................................................................................................................31
3.2 IPCC GUIDANCE...........................................................................................................................34
3.3 INVENTORY AND REPORTING STEPS .................................................................................38
3.4 DEFINITIONS OF CARBON POOLS AND LAND USES ..................................................41
3.6 REFERENCES....................................................................................................................................49
4.0 FIELD-BASED INVENTORIES .................................................................... 50
4.1 INTRODUCTION ..........................................................................................................................50
4.2 CARBON POOLS AND THEIR MEASUREMENT ................................................................54
4.3 CONCEPTS AND CONSIDERATIONS IN INVENTORY DESIGN ................................ 57
4.4 THE FOREST CARBON INVENTORY TEAM .......................................................................66
4.5 FIELD WORK AND ANALYSIS .................................................................................................67
4.6 CALCULATING CARBON STOCKS FROM FIELD DATA ...............................................69


4.7 DATA CHECKING ........................................................................................................................75
4.8 CONSOLIDATING INVENTORY DATASETS ......................................................................76
4.9 THE GAIN-LOSS METHOD ........................................................................................................78
4.10 REFERENCES .................................................................................................................................79
4.11 SELECTED RESOURCES ............................................................................................................81
5.0 REMOTE SENSING OF LAND COVER CHANGE ........................................... 82
5.1 INTRODUCTION ..........................................................................................................................82
5.2 LAND USES AND CATEGORIES IN THE UNFCCC ..........................................................84
5.3 OVERALL STEPS AND NEEDS...................................................................................................90
5.4 REMOTE SENSING OVERVIEW ................................................................................................93
5.5 EMERGING AREAS OF RESEARCH....................................................................................... 109
5.6 REFERENCES................................................................................................................................. 114
5.8 SELECTED RESOURCES............................................................................................................ 121
6.1 INTRODUCTION ....................................................................................................................... 125
6.2 REPORTING.................................................................................................................................. 127
6.3 VERIFICATION ............................................................................................................................ 141
6.4 REFERENCES................................................................................................................................. 151
7.0 THEMATIC REVIEWS ............................................................................. 152
7.1 HISTORY OF REDD+ UNDER THE UNFCCC .................................................................. 152
7.2 COMMUNITY-BASED MONITORING ................................................................................ 165
7.3 NEAR-REAL TIME MONITORING AND ALERT SYSTEMS ........................................... 181


Markets and Communities Program FCPF Forest Carbon Partnership Facility REDD+ MEASUREMENT. REPORTING AND VERIFICATION (MRV) MANUAL.0 v . Forestry and Other Land Use AGB Aboveground biomass BCEFs Biomass conversion and expansion factors BRDF Bi-directional reflectance distribution function BURs Biennial Update Reports CH4 Methane CI Conservation International CMP Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol CO2 Carbon dioxide COP Conference of the Parties CV Coefficient of Variation DBH Diameter at Breast Height DEM Digital Elevation Model DTs Decision Trees EFDB Emissions Factor Database EFs Emissions Factors EM Electromagnetic EOS Earth Observation System EPA Environmental Protection Agency FAO Food and Agriculture Organization FAS Fire Alert System FCMC Forest Carbon. VERSION 2. ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS ACR American Carbon Registry AD Activity Data AFOLU Agriculture.

REPORTING AND VERIFICATION (MRV) MANUAL. Meteorology and Environmental Studies ILUA Integrated Land Use Assessment INPE Brazilian National Space Research Institute IPCC Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change KCA Key Category Analysis LDCM Landsat Data Continuity Mission LEDS Low Emission Development Strategies LiDAR Light Detection and Ranging LUC Land-use Change MADS Colombian Ministry for Sustainable Development MCT Brazilian Ministry of Science.FIRMS Fire Information and Resource Management System FREL Forest Reference Emission Level FRL Forest Reference Level FSI Forest Survey of India FUNCATE Foundation of Space Science. Applications and Technology GEF Global Environmental Facility GFIMS Global Fire Information Management System GFOI MGD Global Forest Observation Initiative Methods and Guidance Documentation GFW Global Forest Watch GHG Greenhouse gas GHGMI Greenhouse Gas Management Institute GIS Geographic Information System GLAS Geoscience Laser Altimeter System GOFC-GOLD Global Observation of Forest and Land Cover Dynamics GPG-LULUCF Good Practice Guidance for Land Use. Land-use Change and Forestry GPS Global Positioning System IDEAM Colombian Institute for Hydrology. VERSION 2. Reporting and Verification N20 Nitrogen oxide NAMA Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Strategies NASA National Aeronautics and Space Agency REDD+ MEASUREMENT.0 vi . Technology and Innovation MMU Minimum-mapping unit MRV Measurement.

accuracy.0 vii .NCs National Communications NFMS National Forest Monitoring System NGGIP National Greenhouse Gas Inventories Program NGO Non-governmental organization NNs Neural Networks NRT Near-real Time PCA Principal components analysis PRODES Projeto De Estimativa De Desflorestamento da Amazoni (Brazilian Amazon deforestation monitoring program) QA/QC Quality Assurance and Quality Control QUICC Quarterly Indicator of Cover Change RADAR Radio Detection and Ranging REDD+ Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation. comparability. REPORTING AND VERIFICATION (MRV) MANUAL. SBSTA Subsidiary Body on Scientific and Technical Advice SES Social and Environmental Soundness SINA Colombian National Environmental System SLR Side Looking RADAR SRTM Shuttle Radar Topography Mission TACCC IPCC principles of transparency. sustainable forest management and enhancement of forest carbon stocks. plus the role of conservation. VERSION 2. completeness. and consistency TOA Top-of-atmosphere UMD University of Maryland UNDP United Nations Development Programme UNEP United Nations Environment Programme UNFCCC United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change USAID United States Agency for International Development USGS United States Geological Survey VCS Verified Carbon Standard WGs Working Groups WMO World Meteorological Organization WRI World Resources Institute REDD+ MEASUREMENT.

Michael Gillenwater of the Greenhouse Gas Management Institute. Asim Banskota of the University of Minnesota. including Colin Silver. Ronald McRoberts. Megan McGroddy. Karyn Tabor. Deborah Lawrence of the University of Virginia. and Jamie Eaton of TerraCarbon LLC. VERSION 2. REDD+ MEASUREMENT. and Leif Kindberg of FCMC. and Charles Scott of the US Forest Service. the International Panel on Climate Change and the Landsat program. John Rogan of Boston University. REPORTING AND VERIFICATION (MRV) MANUAL. Axel Penndorf of BlackBridge. including Ned Horning of the American Museum of Natural History. Additional figures are from the websites of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Carly Green and Jim Penman of the Global Forest Observations Initiative. Christine Dragisic of the US State Department. Mario Chacon and Johnson Cerda of Conservation International. SilvaCarbon Consultant. Maggie Roth.ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The authors thank the various colleagues in our organizations who have commented on the text.0 viii . and members of the USAID Climate Change office. Rishi Das. Frank Martin Seifert of the European Space Agency's Centre for Earth Observation ESRIN. The authors also thank those who have made graphics available for use in this Manual. Brice Mora of the Global Observation of Forest Cover and Land Dynamics. Chris Potter of the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Ames Research Center. Andrew Lister.

agriculture. coastal and marine ecosystems” (Article 4. plus the role of conservation. 7. Figure 7.1. transport. including transfer. including the energy. Informed decision-making and successful implementation of international agreements on climate change (such as the UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol) rely on the availability of accurate and reliable information on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and removals. of technologies. developing countries willing to take action on REDD+ have to establish a National Forest Monitoring System to assess anthropogenic forest-related GHG emissions by sources and removals by sinks. This review provides additional context. As REDD+ actions should be results-based. paragraph 1 (c) stipulates that all countries must “promote and cooperate in the development. developing countries will have to demonstrate that they are reducing emissions from deforestation. paragraph 1 (d)). The realization by the international community of the urgency to address REDD+ has prompted decisions that emphasize the importance of Measurement. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.” Also included in Article 4 are commitments for all countries to “promote sustainable management. Article 4.1 HISTORY OF REDD+ UNDER THE UNFCCC Author: Angel Parra 7. reduce or prevent anthropogenic emissions of GHGs not controlled by the Montreal Protocol in all relevant sectors. and promote and cooperate in the conservation and enhancement of sinks and reservoirs of all GHGs not included in the Montreal Protocol. or Forest Reference Emission Levels or Forest Reference Levels (FREL/FRLs). According to the decisions adopted by governments working under the aegis of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UNFCCC.1 outlines the REDD+ discussion progress from COP11 – COP19. Reporting and Verification (MRV) of GHG emissions and removals as well as their role in global mitigation efforts to address the impacts of anthropogenic climate change.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 152 . including biomass. application and diffusion. industry. especially in developing countries. forestry and waste management sectors. Land-Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF). 7. The complexity of the sector. which have postponed decisions on how to address the reduction of GHG emissions from forestry activities.2 Overview of REDD+ negotiations under the UNFCCC Forestry has been recognized as one of the key sectors to be addressed in the broader context of GHG mitigation under the UNFCCC. has posed a number of challenges. practices and processes that control. however.1.1 Introduction This thematic review provides an overview of negotiations on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.0 THEMATIC REVIEWS 7. sustainable forest management and enhancement of forest carbon stocks (REDD+) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the role that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has played in providing methodological guidance to Land Use. whereas the current reporting guidance under the UNFCCC is discussed in Chapter 6. The principle of “common but differentiated responsibilities” of the Convention (1992). compared to a business-as-usual scenario. forests and oceans as well as other terrestrial.

Seven decisions (Decisions COP19: 2013.16) recognizing that developing COP16: 2010. drivers of deforestation & forest degradation. change. NFMS.13 Adoption of the Cancun Agreements (Decision 1/CP. modalities for MRV. Agreement for the consideration of reducing emissions from deforestation.1: REDD+ discussions from COP11-COP19 COP11 This dynamic changed at the 11th Meeting of the COP (COP11) in Montreal. Agreement on methodological guidance (Decision 4/CP. coordination of support.15) including elements of Copenhagen NFMSs for implementing activities relating to Decision 2/CP. 9/CP. The proposal received wide support and the COP began a two year process to explore options for REDD with the participation of both governments and observer organizations submitting proposals and recommendations on how to reduce GHG emissions from deforestation and forest degradation. safeguards are being addressed and respected. Doha based finance for REDD+. demonstration activities and mobilization of resources COP15: 2009. modalities NFMSs.13) which includes REDD+ as one of the key elements of enhanced national/international action on mitigation of climate COP13: 2007. Warsaw safeguards. COP11: 2005. including scientific.19 to 15/CP.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 153 . Adoption of Decision 1/CP. FRELs/FRLs. ii) contribute Cancun to mitigation actions in forest sector. Bali technology transfer. proposed a mechanism for reducing emissions from deforestation in developing countries. policy approaches and positive Montreal incentives Adoption of the Bali Action Plan (Decision 1/CP. system for providing information on safeguards.19) that address: financing. national FRLs or sub-national RLs. Figure 7. and iii) develop a national strategy/action plan. (Decision 2/CP13) encourages actions on REDD+ including: capacity building. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. 17 that includes guidance on providing information on how COP17: 2011. Adoption of Decision 12/CP. and elaborates modalities relating to Durban FRELs\FRLs. Adoption of the Warsaw Framework for REDD-plus. technical and methodological issues.18 with agreement to initiate a work-programme on results- COP18: 2012. countries should aim to: i) slow/halt/reverse forest cover & carbon loss. Canada in 2005. when Papua New Guinea and Costa Rica. with support from eight other countries.

and • Policy approaches and positive incentives on issues relating to reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries. financing and capacity-building. in relation to decision 2/CP. namely mitigation. 46 COP14 One year later. changes in forest cover and associated carbon stocks and GHG emissions and the enhancement of forest carbon stocks to enhance action on climate change mitigation. as the negotiations process is to be informed by “… the best available scientific information. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Initiating negotiations on future action. sustainable development.13) signaled the beginning of a new global process through long-term cooperative action on all aspects of climate change. does not mean that current mitigation efforts should be discounted or discontinued. sustainable management of forests. however. technology. including: • The organization of an experts meeting on: methodological issues relating to Reference Emission Levels (RELs) for deforestation and degradation. the SBSTA reached agreement on a number of issues relating to REDD+. the facilitation of technology transfer and the development of demonstration activities. The decision also requested advancement of relevant methodological work by the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA). which defined a broader scope for future global action.13 on “reducing emissions from deforestation in developing countries: approaches to stimulate action. technical assistance.” Through this decision. These provisions bring together national mitigation efforts. technology and finance. A key element of the international negotiations was the role of developing countries in national and international efforts to mitigate climate change. The Bali Action Plan included considerations on the following actions: • Nationally appropriate mitigation actions (NAMAs) by developing country Parties in the context of sustainable development. as well as recognizing the need to promote the full and effective participation of indigenous 45 Paragraph 11 of Decision 1/CP.COP13 At COP13. • A recommendation on methodological guidance noting the importance of. finance and MRV. inter alia. and processes there under. the relationship among the RELs and other relevant reference levels (RLs). sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries (sub- paragraph 1 (b) (iii) of Decision 1/CP. at COP14 in Poznan.13). The Bali Action Plan (Decision 1/CP. promoting readiness of developing countries. and the role of conservation. and further mobilization of resources.13. supported and enabled by technology.13 46 The SBSTA is a permanent subsidiary body under the UNFCCC. reportable and verifiable manner (sub-paragraph 1 (b) (ii) of Decision 1/CP. and the role of conservation. It supports the work of the COP and the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP) through the provision of timely information and advice on scientific and technological matters as they relate to the Convention and the Protocol. the COP encouraged capacity-building activities. outputs from other relevant intergovernmental processes and insights from the business and research communities and civil society.” 45 The intention is that lessons learned from current efforts will guide the intergovernmental process as it defines a new way forward. REDD+. COP13 also adopted Decision 2/CP.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 154 . Poland in 2008. adaptation.13). governments agreed on the Bali Road Map. experience in implementation of the Convention and its Kyoto Protocol. in a measurable.

The COP also encouraged developing country parties to contribute to mitigation actions in the forest sector through actions in the five specific areas listed in Box 7. they usually differ in use. people and local communities. and while sometimes used interchangeably. COP16 The outcome of COP16 in Cancun. Poznan and Copenhagen) were consolidated as part of the Cancun Agreements (Decision 1/CP. These terms have not been defined by the UNFCCC or IPCC. safeguards and a phased approach to REDD+. through Decision 4/CP. • Encouraged capacity-building support from all able parties for capacity building in developing countries. COP15 Significant progress was made in REDD+ negotiations leading up to COP15 in Copenhagen. provided adequate and predictable support is forthcoming. inter alia. among other issues. Despite the difficulties in reaching agreement on an overall package as a result of COP15.2) would be addressed throughout implementation. In particular. among other things: • Requested developing countries to. developing countries should aim to slow. The Ad- REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Mexico in 2010 was a milestone for REDD+ because many of the key decisions adopted at previous sessions (Bali. a robust and transparent NFMS and a system for providing information on how the safeguards listed in Appendix I to Decision 1/CP. RLs refer to the amount of emissions from deforestation and forest degradation and the amount of removals from sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks. Denmark in 2009. taking into account national circumstances and relevant international agreements. the COP affirmed that. national FRLs or sub- national RLs as an interim measure. as appropriate. halt and reverse forest cover and carbon loss.16 (see Box 7. drivers of deforestation and degradation. and methodologies for estimating emissions and removals from these activities. Developing countries were requested to develop a national strategy or action plan. It is important to note that in climate negotiations. • Encouraged development of guidance for Indigenous Peoples and local community engagement. the negotiations on REDD+ culminated in the adoption of Decision 4/CP. and adjust for national circumstances. consistent with MRV of NAMAs for consideration at COP18.16).1. • Recognized that FRELs should take into account historic data. and encouragement to use the IPCC Good Practice Guidance for LULUCF (GPG-LULUCF). and • Urged coordination of efforts. the COP.15 which addressed issues such as scope. Specifically. RELs refer only to the amount of emissions from deforestation and forest degradation. the terms RL and REL refer to a business-as-usual baseline that can be developed by taking into account historic data. The work program was to develop modalities for MRV of emissions by sources and removals by sinks resulting from these activities.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 155 . and to use the most recent IPCC guidance to estimate emissions and establish NFMS. and • A recommendation on the use of the Revised 1996 IPCC Guidelines for National GHG Inventories. guiding principles.15. The COP also requested that the SBSTA develop a work program to identify. identify drivers of deforestation and forest degradation.

and • Guidance on systems for providing information on how safeguards are addressed and respected.1) should be consistent with the relevant provisions included in Decision 1/CP. additional and predictable may come from a wide variety of sources. including the safeguards in its Appendix I (see Box 7. the role of markets and non-markets and the potential use of offsets.16. In Decision 12/CP. and • In light of the experience gained from current and future demonstration activities. including principles that should be followed when designing MRV systems.16 The Conference of the Parties. the COP. at the SBSTA34 meeting in Bonn. including public and private. governments continued to work throughout 2011 in preparation for COP17 in Durban. South Africa in 2011. (b) Reducing emissions from forest degradation.2). These discussions have continued at subsequent SBSTAs. the COP agreed. modalities for FREL/FRLs and MRV. (c) Conservation of forest carbon stocks.17. (d) Sustainable management of forests. (e) Enhancement of forest carbon stocks. inter alia: REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. among other things: • Regardless of the source or type of financing.16 (see Box 7. as deemed appropriate by each Party and in accordance with their respective capabilities and national circumstances: (a) Reducing emissions from deforestation.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 156 . the COP noted that guidance on systems for providing safeguards information should be consistent with national sovereignty. • As part of the outcome of COP17 (Decision 2/CP. Under the section on providing information on how safeguards are addressed and respected. Earlier in the year.1: Paragraph 70 of Decision 1/CP. bilateral and multilateral. work continued on technical guidance for MRV. appropriate market-based approaches could be developed by the COP to support results-based actions in developing countries. Following the successful outcome of Cancun. • Results-based finance provided to developing countries that is new.17). the activities referred to in paragraph 70 of Decision 1/CP. COP17 The negotiations during COP17 focused on two groups of issues relating to REDD+: • Sources of financing for REDD+. Box 7. legislation and circumstances.Hoc Working Group on Long-Term Cooperative Action (AWG-LCA) was requested to explore financing options for the full implementation of results-based actions and to report on this at COP17. Germany. … 70. Encourages developing country Parties to contribute to mitigation actions in the forest sector by undertaking the following activities.

and noting that the United Nations General Assembly has adopted the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. (e) That actions are consistent with the conservation of natural forests and biological diversity.16 are not used for the conversion of natural forests.16. but are instead used to incentivize the protection and conservation of natural forests and their ecosystem services. (d) The full and effective participation of relevant stakeholders. When undertaking the activities referred to in paragraph 70 of Decision 1/CP. as appropriate. (c) Respect for the knowledge and rights of indigenous peoples and members of local communities. should provide a summary of information on how safeguards are being addressed and respected throughout implementation.16. and build upon existing systems. • Noted that the implementation of safeguards and information on how these safeguards are being addressed and respected should support national strategies or action plans and be included in all phases of implementation. Box 7. and the need for further guidance to the COP. and to enhance other social and environmental benefits. national circumstances and laws. be country-driven and implemented at the country level. and • Requested SBSTA 36 to consider the timing of the first presentation and the frequency of subsequent presentations of the summary of information to be considered by COP18. as well as the International Mother Earth Day.* (f) Actions to address the risks of reversals. in particular indigenous peoples and local communities. consistent with relevant COP decisions on non-Annex I Parties’ national communications. • Agreed that the systems for providing information on how the safeguards are addressed and respected should. in the actions referred to in paragraphs 70 and 72 of Decision 1/CP. ensuring that the actions referred to in paragraph 70 of Decision 1/CP. *Taking into account the need for sustainable livelihoods of indigenous peoples and local communities and their interdependence on forests in most countries. (b) Transparent and effective national forest governance structures. or communication channels agreed by the COP. (g) Actions to reduce displacement of emissions.2: Safeguards for REDD+ activities (paragraph 2 of Appendix I to Decision 1/CP. taking into account national legislation and sovereignty. • Decided that the summary of information referred to should be provided periodically and included in national communications. as appropriate. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. among other things: provide transparent and consistent information that is accessible by all relevant stakeholders and updated on a regular basis. by taking into account relevant international obligations. • Agreed that developing countries undertaking these activities.16) 2. reflected in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. the following safeguards should be promoted and supported: (a) That actions complement or are consistent with the objectives of national forest programmes and relevant international conventions and agreements.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 157 .

These decisions covered a range of topics including financing. and drivers of deforestation and forest NFMS.Under modalities for REL/RLs. ensuring consistency in the approaches to data collection and use. The decisions are outlined below. safeguards.3). trends and any modification of scope and methodologies. paragraph 7 and consistent with anthropogenic forest-related GHG emissions by sources and removals by sinks in a country’s GHG inventories. and iv) update RELs periodically to account for new knowledge and trends. Box 7. the COP. Poland in 2013 resulted in the adoption of seven decisions collectively known as the Warsaw Framework for REDD-plus. The cumulative guidance indicates that RELs should be developed with strong links to the design of the national MRV system. as appropriate. indicating that Parties should: i) establish RELs maintaining consistency with forest emissions and removals as contained in countries’ national GHG inventories. ii) submit information/rationale on the development of their RELs. which recognized that RELs should be established transparently. institutional arrangements. • Agreed that developing countries should update REL/RLs periodically. and if adjusted to national circumstances.php REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. while transitioning to a national level. inter alia: • Agreed that REL/RLs are benchmarks for assessing each country’s performance in implementing the referred activities. taking into account new knowledge. and that interim RLs may cover less than the national territory of forest area.15. COP19 COP19. and • Agreed to a process enabling technical assessment of the proposed RLs when submitted or updated by parties in accordance with guidance to be developed by SBSTA 36. REL/RLs represent benchmarks for assessing a country’s performance in implementing REDD+ activities. held in Warsaw. The emissions estimates from these will then be compared with those estimated via MRV. • Invited developing countries to submit information and rationale on the development of their REL/RLs including details of national circumstances. and that sub- national RELs could be used as an interim measure. FRELs.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 158 . 47 http://unfccc. Countries implementing REDD+ activities under the UNFCCC will need to develop their RELs and submit them to the UNFCCC. The UNFCCC has also addressed countries’ needs to set RELs. and the difference between the two will be used to measure the effectiveness of each country’s policies and measures related to REDD+. • Acknowledged that sub-national REL/RLs may be elaborated as an interim measure. in accordance with national circumstances.15. including how national circumstances were considered.16 then defined RELs/RLs as one of the elements Parties aiming to undertake REDD+ activities should develop. The most recent guidance on RELs emerged from COP17.3 includes the UNFCCC’s overview 47. including details in accordance with the guidelines contained in the annex to Decision 2/CP.17 (see Box 7. MRV. Decision 1/CP. iii) consider a step-wise approach to the development of RELs to enable the incorporation of improved data and methodologies. The first UNFCCC guidance on RELs was provided in Decision 4/CP. should take into account historical trends. and could be adjusted for national circumstances. • Decided that these shall be established considering Decision 4/CP.

appendix I.16. are being addressed and respected • Decision 13/CP.19: The timing and the frequency of presentations of the summary of information on how all the safeguards referred to in decision 1/CP.19: Modalities for national forest monitoring systems • Decision 12/CP.19: Coordination of support for the implementation of activities in relation to mitigation actions in the forest sector by developing countries.19: Work programme on results-based finance to progress the full implementation of the activities referred to in decision 1/CP.16.19: Modalities for measuring.19: Guidelines and procedures for the technical assessment of submissions from Parties on proposed forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels • Decision 14/CP. reporting and verifying • Decision 15/CP. paragraph 70 • Decision 10/CP.19: Addressing the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.• Decision 9/CP.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 159 . including institutional arrangements • Decision 11/CP.

16. with the first meeting to be held in conjunction with SBI 41 (December 2014) • Requests the Subsidiary Body for Implementation. inter alia: • Invites interested Parties to designate a national entity or focal point to serve as liaison with the secretariat and bodies under the Convention. paragraph 70 • Also decides that the frequency for subsequent presentations of the summary of information should be consistent with the provisions for submissions of national communications and. are being addressed and respected throughout the implementation of the activities referred to in decision 1/CP. Warsaw Framework for REDD-plus decisions adopted at COP19 (November 2013) Box 7. and build upon existing systems while being flexible and allowing for improvement Decision 12: CP. including institutional arrangements. paragraph 70. reporting and verifying. to publish information on the results and corresponding results-based payments • Requests the Standing Committee on Finance to consider the issue of financing for forests in its work on coherence and coordination • Recognizes the importance of incentivizing non-carbon benefits for the long-term sustainability of the implementation of the activities referred to in decision 1/CP. via the REDD Web Platform • Decides that developing country Parties should start providing the summary of information after the start of the implementation of activities referred to in decision 1/CP. are being addressed and respected.19: Addressing the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation The COP in this decision. inter alia: • Decides that measuring.16. on a voluntary basis. organizations and the private sector to take action to reduce the drivers • Also encourages to continue work to address drivers. inter alia: • Encourages Parties.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 160 . Parties and relevant entities financing REDD-plus to meet. including alternative sources • Encourages financing entities.16. and forest carbon stock and forest-area changes is to be consistent with the methodological guidance provided in decision 4/CP. suitable for MRV.19: Guidelines and procedures for the technical assessment of submissions from Parties on proposed forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels.16. inter alia: • Decides that each submission of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels shall be subject to a technical assessment • Invites Parties and relevant international organizations to support capacity-building for development and assessment of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels • Adopts the guidelines and procedures for the technical assessment. reporting and verification of nationally appropriate mitigation actions by developing country Parties as agreed by the COP • Decides that data and information should be provided through a technical annex to the biennial update reports. at the latest. a number of needs and functions were identified • Encourages national entities/focal points.15. bilateral and multilateral. as adopted or encouraged by the COP • Also decides that national forest monitoring systems should provide data and information that are transparent. paragraph 70 Decision 10/CP. inter alia: • Agrees that the summary of information on how all of the safeguards referred to in decision 1/CP.19: Coordination of support for the implementation of activities in relation to mitigation actions in the forest sector by developing countries. The COP in this decision. The COP in this decision. inter alia: • Reaffirms that results-based finance may come from a wide variety of sources. on a voluntary basis. consistent over time. The COP in this decision. as contained in the annex to this decision Decision 14: CP. The COP in this decision. paragraph 70.3: UNFCCC’s overview of the Warsaw Framework for REDD+ Decision 9/CP/19: Work programme on results-based finance to progress the full implementation of the activities referred to in Decision 1/CP.19: The timing and the frequency of presentations of the summary of information on how all the safeguards referred to in decision 1/CP. to discuss the needs and functions identified to address issues relating to coordination of support. at its forty-seventh session (November-December 2017) to review the outcomes of these meetings Decision 11/CP. including the Green Climate Fund in a key role.19: Modalities for measuring. and agrees that these LULUCF experts will develop a technical report on their analysis of the technical annex and identified areas for technical improvement • Also agrees that results-based actions that may be eligible to appropriate market-based approaches that could be developed by the COP may be subject to any further specific modalities for verification Decision 15: CP. inter alia: • Affirms that the activities referred to in this decision are undertaken in the context of the provision of adequate and predictable support to developing country Parties • Decides national forest monitoring systems should be guided by the most recent IPCC guidance and guidelines. The COP in this decision.19: Modalities for national forest monitoring systems. The COP in this decision. and to share information • Further encourages developing country Parties to take note of the information shared REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. appendix I. via the REDD Web Platform Decision 13: CP.16. underlining that the submission of the technical annex is voluntary and in the context of results-based payments • Further decides to include two additional LULUCF experts in the technical team of experts for the international consultation and analysis of results- based actions reported in a technical annex to the biennial update reports. on coordination of support. public and private. and any guidance on the measurement. on a voluntary basis. and to work with a view to increasing the number of countries that are in a position to obtain and receive payments for results-based actions • Decides to establish an information hub on the REDD Web Platform. and may also be nominated to receive and obtain results-based payments • Recognizes that in order to address issues related to the coordination of support. reporting and verifying anthropogenic forest-related emissions by sources and removals by sinks.16. to channel adequate and predictable results-based finance in a fair and balanced manner. could also be provided. forest carbon stocks. appendix I.

The NGGIP also established and maintains the IPCC Emission Factor Database (EFDB) discussed in Chapter 3. It does not conduct any research nor does it monitor climate related data or parameters. To accomplish its work. provided guidance on safeguards. the IPCC reviews and assesses the most recent scientific.1.The Warsaw Framework for REDD-plus represented another milestone for REDD as it identified options for financing and highlighted support coordination. Its mandate is to provide the world with a clear scientific view on the current state of climate change knowledge and its potential environmental and socio-economic impacts. and to encourage its use by countries participating in the IPCC and by the Parties to the UNFCCC. and addressed drivers of deforestation and forest degradation. Its core activity is to develop and refine internationally agreed-upon methodologies and a software program for the calculation and reporting of national GHG emissions and removals.3 Methodological work of the IPCC on GHG inventories The IPCC is a scientific body of the United Nations that was established by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). Peru (December 2014) include the need to fully incentivize the non-carbon benefits of REDD+ and emphasize the benefits of REDD+ in terms of both mitigation and adaptation. technical and socio-economic research produced worldwide.2: IPCC structure and functions (source: IPCC TFI) REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. and the Mitigation of Climate Change (WG3). the Framework more clearly addressed several NFMS activities. 7. the IPCC is organized into three working groups (WGs) responsible for assessing: the Physical Science Basis (WG1). the IPCC has established the Task Force on National GHG Inventories to oversee the IPCC National GHG Inventories Program (NGGIP). Other ad-hoc task groups and steering groups may be established to consider specific topics or questions. To do this.2.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 161 . A schematic on the structure of the IPCC is shown in Figure 7. Figure 7. Further. In addition to the three WGs. the Climate Change Impacts. Two major pending issues that will be discussed at COP20 to be held in Lima. Adaptation and Vulnerability (WG2).

which consolidates the approach to LULUCF in the GPG-LULUCF and the Agriculture sector in GPG2000 into a single Agriculture. • The 2006 IPCC Guidelines on National GHG Inventories are an evolutionary development starting from the Revised 1996 Guidelines. and the GPG-LULUCF in 2000 and 2003. • In response to requests by the UNFCCC. Forestry and Other Land Use (AFOLU) Volume. These two documents do not replace. time series consistency and quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC). Solvents and Other Product Use.1. and the GPG-LULUCF. respectively. This was the first internationally accepted methodology that became the basis for the development of national GHG inventories under the UNFCCC. perfluorinated hydrocarbons. including estimation of uncertainties. • The Revised 1996 IPCC Guidelines for National GHG Inventories include revised methodologies and default data for six main sectors: Energy. over the years. have become the cornerstone for all work on GHG inventories. methodologies were included for the estimation of halofluorocarbons. the GPG 2000. the IPCC has played a key role in the development of methodological guidelines and guidance that. methane [CH4]. but supplement the information in the Revised 1996 Guidelines and provide good practice guidance on choice of estimation methodology. Specifically: • In November 1994. which addressed all sectors mentioned above except for land-use change and forestry. sulphur hexafluoride. the IPCC approved the first version of the IPCC Guidelines for National GHG Inventories.7. Industrial Processes. Agriculture. and Waste. LULUCF.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 162 . the IPCC developed the Good Practice Guidance and Uncertainty Management in National GHG Inventories (GPG 2000). improvements of the methods and advice on cross-cutting issues. In addition. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. nitrogen dioxide [N2O]). The most significant changes occur in Volume 4.4 History of IPCC methodological guidelines and guidance Since its inception in the early 1990s. and direct GHGs (CO2. ozone and aerosol precursors.

including methodological information.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 163 . 7.16. which have been included in forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels and the reasons for omitting a pool and/or activity from the construction of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels. as appropriate. 2013.17) Each developing country Party aiming to undertake the actions listed in decision 1/CP. and descriptions of changes from previously submitted information. in a comprehensive and transparent way. site-level activities are being developed within jurisdictions that are also developing their own broader REDD+ strategies.5 Other non-UN processes In addition to countries preparing for national implementation of REDD+. advances have been made at the sub-national level in the context of voluntary carbon markets and bilateral agreements. methods. paragraph 70. used at the time of construction of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels. The information provided should be guided by the most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change guidance and guidelines. consistent with guidance agreed by the Conference of the Parties (COP) and accurate information for the purpose of allowing a technical assessment of the data. The LULUCF sector has evolved significantly between the Revised 1996 Guidelines and the 2006 IPCC Guidelines (see Figure 3. and activities listed in decision 1/CP. an explanation of why and how the definition used in the construction of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels was chosen. and include: (a) Information that was used by Parties in constructing a forest reference emission level and/or forest reference level. In some cases. inter alia. methodologies and procedures used in the construction of a forest reference emission level and/or forest reference level. (b) Transparent. These changes are a result of better understanding of the sector and the availability of more scientific research. descriptions of relevant policies and plans.4: Guidelines for submissions of information on reference levels(Annex to decision 12/CP. (c) Pools and gases.1. complete(1). This requires the development of a “nested” approach to REDD+ strategies. if applicable and assumptions used. Sub-national implementation has mostly been at the site level. as appropriate. including historical data.16. VCS. However. including. accounting of emission reductions and distribution of emissions-reduction credits. paragraph 70. Box 7. noting that significant pools and/or activities should not be excluded. These sub-national REDD+ efforts look to separate groups to provide guidance on setting RLs and aspects of MRV. in case there is a difference with the definition of forest used in the national greenhouse gas inventory or in reporting to other international organizations. should include in its submission information that is transparent. 2013). as adopted or encouraged by the COP. a description of data sets. approaches. Two groups providing guidance are the Voluntary Carbon Standards group (VCS) and the American Carbon Registry (ACR) (ACR. consistent and accurate information.1 in Chapter 3). Both have provided technical methodologies recommended REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. models. there has been some progress at the sub-national jurisdiction level. if appropriate. (1) Complete here means the provision of information that allows for the reconstruction of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels. (d) The definition of forest used in the construction of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels and. complete.

1.UNFCCC Decision 4/CP. Policy approaches and positive incentives on issues relating to reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries. Japan. allowing them to use the baseline and other requirements developed by the jurisdiction. An Environment & Energy Group Addendum Part Two: Action taken by the Conference of the Parties at its thirteenth session. Good Practice Guidance for Land sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries http://unfccc. Japan. C.Volume 4 -Agriculture. American Carbon Registry standards and verification. A sourcebook of methods and procedures for monitoring and reporting anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and removals caused by deforestation. Canada).pdf IPCC. Blaser. Japan. FCCC/CP/2007/6/Add. within the guidance of both the VCS and the ACR.C. These efforts have also helped provide guidance on how to approach issues particular to jurisdictional and nested REDD+. Land-Use Change and Forestry Institute for Global Environmental Strategies. VCS.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 164 . district. while also helping to attract private capital for REDD+. GOFC-GOLD Report version COP17-1. land-use change and forestry (LULUCF) with an emphasis on developing country perspectives. UNDP. 2006. IPCC. Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories Institute for Global Environmental Strategies. Voluntary Carbon Standards methodologies.Report of the Conference of the Parties on its thirteenth session. 2008. For example. This can have the benefit of reducing transaction costs for projects. deforestation rates and GHG reductions through REDD+ project activities. Robledo. 2013. rather than having to develop these at the project level. GOFC-GOLD. http://americancarbonregistry.15: Methodological guidance for activities relating to reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation and the role of conservation.1. A nested REDD+ project is one that is accounted and monitored in reference to the jurisdictional accounting framework (baseline. and forestation.). Forestry and other Land Use Institute for Global Environmental Strategies.for sub-national REDD+ RLs and MRV. gains and losses of carbon stocks in forests remaining forests. and J. state. though other ways of defining jurisdictional boundaries are also possible. 2011. and the role of conservation. They tend to defer to the IPCC. Both efforts seek to align with existing UNFCCC guidance on REDD+ and are intended to follow and support additional UNFCCC REDD+ guidance as it emerges. sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries http://unfccc. 2013. a jurisdiction is any politically defined region delineated for the purposes of tracking carbon stocks. Key issues on land use. Natural Resources held in Bali from 3 to 15 December 2007. Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories . 2003. FCCC/CP/2009/11/Add. (GOFC-GOLD Project Office. etc. leakage assessment. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. 2003. p11 FCCC/CP. IPCC. for example in carbon-stock assessments and fundamental concerns such as transparency and replicability. province.16: Outcome of the work of the Ad Hoc Working Group on long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention . 7.6 References ACR. monitoring requirements) in which the project takes place. A jurisdiction may be a national or sub-national political entity (nation.1 . http://v-c-s.

2. forest carbon stocks. or by training and contracting community members to carry out monitoring projects. either through their participation in collaborative monitoring efforts. Community-based monitoring can be incorporated into these monitoring systems. and ‘safeguards’ for biodiversity conservation and livelihood support (Danielsen and Theilade.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 165 . “Community-based monitoring implies the direct involvement of community members in monitoring. However. province. carbon stocks. or by external entities to evaluate larger landscape or regional-scale projects. These may include land tenure conflicts. a community member is defined as a resident in or near an area of interest. water quality.” In this review. 7. 2011). drivers of deforestation and forest degradation and policy and institutional frameworks. Additionally. as well as many other domestic policy initiatives. Community-based monitoring has been used to examine a number of forest elements including biodiversity. while acknowledging other areas in which community members can contribute valuable information. respect for human rights. and the role of Indigenous Peoples and local communities is explicitly referred to in the UNFCCC Cancun Agreement (UNFCCC. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. or country. This review focuses principally on how communities can participate in the collection of biophysical data. 2010).1.2.7. will require monitoring of non-carbon elements such as social safeguards (UNFCCC. this study recognizes that community-based monitoring can be initiated by community members to evaluate community initiatives such as forest management. cultural and religious points of interest.1 Definition of community-based monitoring According to Fernandez-Gimenez et al.2 COMMUNITY-BASED MONITORING Authors: Kemen Austin and Fred Stolle The objective of this thematic review is to highlight the potential benefits and required processes for incorporating community-based monitoring into a national REDD+ monitoring initiative.. and will depend on a variety of factors including: forest tenure and resource use by the community. The potential roles that community-based monitoring can contribute to a national REDD+ monitoring system are outlined in Table 7. We examine relevant literature and case studies of community-based monitoring of biodiversity. 2011).2 Community-based monitoring in the context of REDD+ As discussed in earlier chapters. and differentiates community members from external consultants who live in another city. in order to identify common challenges and lessons for REDD+. and mechanisms to ensure participation. illegal extraction rates and timber and non-timber products (Effah et al. (2008). Additionally it is broadly recognized that REDD+. 2010). the mechanisms by which communities will be involved in forest monitoring have not received much attention in the UNFCCC context. 7. benefit sharing. the range of MRV systems and forest monitoring systems that are being developed for REDD+ will likely require monitoring of forest changes. and forest biomass.

provide benefits such as training and salaries. GOFC-GOLD.2.1: Potential role for community-based monitoring in national monitoring systems (adapted from Pratihast and Herold.3 Rationale for community-based monitoring for REDD+ While remote sensing is considered the most promising method for national scale assessments of forest change (Patenaude et al. and provide independent verification information Monitoring Analyze historical data if available Collect regular ground-based degradation. DeFries et al. and provide information on carbon stocks timber forest product (NTFP) use local forest timber/non-timber uses Carry out national forest inventory and activities Estimation of emission Deploy field crews to collect data Collect field data regularly over time factors Rely on research projects Identification of Make inferences regarding patterns of Track types and patterns of local drivers of change change and likely cause activities that cause change Map tenure. measurements of forest carbon enhancement of forest Conduct surveys on fuelwood and non. and facilitate the collection of information on difficult-to-observe metrics. stocks. increase frequency of monitoring.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 166 . 2011) 7. 2013). limitations exist that will require the use of many ground-based methods to accurately report on emissions from forest change and emission reductions from a REDD+ program. 2007..Based Monitoring Forest Mapping and Map forests based on biophysical Map forests based on community Stratification indicators and some broad management tenure or site specific management regimes Monitoring Conduct remote sensing Observe the location. area and deforestation and type of change events (in near real- reforestation Carry out national forest inventory time) Collect data from forestry companies Collect regular measurements on Calibrate or validate satellite imagery. time. 2010) to develop emission factors and collect information on social and cultural indicators. and approaches that involve local people can reduce costs. 2005. with field crews Calibrate or validate maps. Remote sensing-based methods will need to be supplemented with a range of local-level monitoring for calibration and validation (Schelhas et al.. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. the ground in near real-time and derived maps. Reliability The use of international teams of specialized personnel in the collection of ground-based data represents an expensive process. management and land- use plans Data analysis and Collect and standardize data from Provide independent validation data reporting national and sub-national sources for national reporting Provide data to the public Use data for local purposes Table 7. Component of Monitoring Options at the Potential Contribution of Monitoring System National Level Community..

2011). community monitoring is most cost effective for larger areas and projects that aim to monitor over at least several years (Effah et al. Frequency Forest monitoring for REDD+ will require periodic collection of information. 2011). Community members are well positioned to collect information on a broader range of metrics beyond carbon that may be needed for potential REDD+ or national forest management policy implementation (Pratihast and Herold. once the community members have been trained in the required methods (Van Laake. More frequent monitoring of forest conditions and changes can improve the statistical and scientific reliability of the resulting data. These metrics include socio-economic information (e. particularly in forests undergoing rapid change (Danielsen et al.g. A study by Larrazábal et al. Therefore. Importantly. 2011)..Recent studies have used community members and external consultants to quantify forest carbon stocks to compare the accuracy of community-based monitoring against a ‘best practice’ alternative (Van Laake. 2006).. Danielsen et al. communities are well positioned to observe the impacts of human use on forest and forest carbon and gauge the influence of management or policy implementation. Topp-Jørgensen et al. including the frequency and scale of monitoring and the opportunity costs for monitors. 2011).. Additionally. these studies also estimate that data collected by community members can have higher variability and lower precision than data collected by external counterparts experienced in forest inventories (Skutsch and McCall. at intervals appropriate for the forest type and management regime. These costs include purchasing of equipment. However. identifying ways to reduce costs is vital (Skutsch et al. Sensitivity to local context Community members can have detailed knowledge of their local surroundings including an awareness of small scale variations in management (Dalle et al. 2010. Understanding of social and cultural impacts The success of REDD+ will depend on both accurate and transparent forest monitoring of carbon emissions and removals and on non-carbon elements such as the safeguards outlined in the Cancun Agreements (UNFCCC.. 2010).. 2005. One study suggests that a minimum size of 100 hectares is required to break even. 2011). 2011). However. 2010). 2011). 2011). 2011). community members are often knowledgeable regarding drivers of local forest changes (Van Laake. setting up permanent sample plots. Cost Effectiveness Forest monitoring is one of the largest costs associated with REDD+ in developing countries and. 2011).. 2011). Community members located in and around areas of interest are well positioned to monitor over longer periods of time and with higher frequency than several other options. Results from 30 projects in 7 countries demonstrate that there is no significant difference in the accuracy between these two groups. such as a national forest service entity or visiting technical consultants (Rist et al. costs of community-based monitoring are much lower compared to the costs associated with travel and salaries for external consultants (Rist et al. but generally less sophisticated data collection expertise (Skutsch and McCall.. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. This may be the result of the participating community members having expert knowledge of their own environment and resources... Other studies estimate that in the long run. relative to the transaction costs of setting up a community monitoring system (Danielsen et al.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 167 . and training. many of the costs associated with community monitoring occur in the initial stages of the project or initiative (Effah et al. because these costs are constant and independent of the size or timeframe of the project. the monitoring costs depend on many factors.. As a result. 2011).. therefore. (2011) estimated the costs of community-based monitoring to be one-third to half the cost of monitoring conducted by external consultants (including training costs).

built-in knowledge of local economy and other data local socio-economy and culture. includes professional fees. takes more time to identify.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 168 . Table 7.. adds to benefits the capacity of local residents. 2010. either for REDD+. In addition.3..2: Advantages and disadvantages of community-based and expert-based monitoring (from Knowles et al. substantial and Intensity to spend long periods in the field. the common challenges and lessons for scaling up to the national level are discussed. adapted from Larrazábal et al. or at least continue monitoring over the lifespan of the the same coordination. and offers opportunities to improve management Management Expected to be good Potential areas of concern in many communities Initial training Low. . participation of community members can lead to the long-term sustainability of interventions and of monitoring initiatives. travel and accommodation costs over time Local Usually poor. Thus. it is very costly for external experts High. increased ownership of mitigation actions. travel and High initial set-up and training costs followed by accommodation costs relatively lower salary. local authorities. access to resources.4 Lessons from case studies This section presents a synthesis of cases in which communities have been involved in forest monitoring. dependent on appropriate training and data verification Consistency Potentially low if the same consultants cannot Potentially high if the same team members. 2011).2 discusses the comparative advantage of local communities in forest monitoring projects. cultural relevance of monitoring approaches. mechanisms for participation in decision making).g. very challenging to understand Good. train and equip preparation teams Collection of Generally poor. governance (e. time culture. benefit sharing processes. laws and species Data Quality Good Good. residents typically know the area well in terms Knowledge needed of access.g. 2011) 7. species observations.2. assumes that professional teams need little High. Monitoring External Consultants Local Community Members Component Costs High. can be maintained project. improved social and environmental safeguards. biomass energy use. strengthened capacity of local institutions. habitat changes). and biodiversity (e. Provision of benefits to communities Involving local community members in forest monitoring can lead to additional benefits such as transparency. and employment opportunities (Danielson et al. even if sampling is done part-time. usually limited to technical input High. . logistics. local guides and translators usually Good. or return to travel and set-up time is saved and monitoring can be carry out measurements frequently over time carried out frequently Additional Low. easy to collect information and monitor consuming to collect the data changes Table 7. monitoring by locals creates ownership. or for other metrics that might be relevant to a REDD+ program.. or the same methods are not adhered to Frequency Usually low. food production). The cases are also summarized in Table 7. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.

2005) and bird censuses in Kenya (Bennun et al. However.. The authors present a case from Namibia where communities were provided adaptable but standardized data collection guidance. (2005) present an example highlighting the successful harmonization of scaling up data collection. loss.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 169 . 2011). Incentives Community-based monitoring is unlikely to be sustainable unless the benefits of participating in a monitoring program outweigh the costs (Skutsch et al. Mukama REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. The scope of local monitoring initiatives is tailored to local priorities and is usually not as in-depth as will be required for REDD+ monitoring (McCall. The Kyoto: Think Global. 2005. Act Local (K:TGAL) research and capacity building program. (2011) suggests that a phased approach to community monitoring may be most effective. community-based monitoring could. with the right incentives and training. 2012. found that training can take place over a short period of time. To achieve robust and consistent data collection. be extended to include collaborative monitoring of carbon stocks and fluxes that contribute to externally-driven REDD+ requirements (Lawrence and Elphick. using complex computer equipment. 2010). 2002). 2005.. Hartanto et al. The case studies examined here provided between $1 and $7 per day to participants.. 2008. External support in the form of salaries and skill building for employment will be necessary to incentivize forest monitoring (Evans and Guariguata.. and use of equipment (e.. clear standards and protocols must be developed that local communities can easily learn and implement..g. sufficient upfront resources and training may be necessary to effectively establish a community-based monitoring system. Such a system would first build participant’s capacity for forest monitoring. 2011). This training may include forest inventory methods. through intensive training and ‘learning by doing’ in which external consultants demonstrate principles and tasks to community members. the data could be aggregated and compared nationally. monitoring is used as a mechanism to track the performance of the management initiatives. Capacity building The literature on community-based monitoring demonstrates that community members can reliably collect data on forests once basic training is provided.. Mukama et al. A review of literature by Effah et al. However.Locally driven versus externally driven monitoring Several of the studies examined the application of community-based monitoring where a community had set up (or was in the process of setting up) a system for managing common forest resources (Topp-Jørgensen et al. 2003) and “externally driven monitoring with local data collection” (Danielsen et al. for example. in the case where community members are not already actively engaged in forest management. Rist et al. only two of the studies addressed whether these costs were sufficient to overcome the opportunity costs of lost wages. and stock change over large landscapes (Skutsch and Solis. However.. which will require monitoring forest area gain. Global Positioning System [GPS] units. 2011). This type of monitoring has also been termed “micro-macro monitoring” (Ojha and Bhattarai. data recording. As participating communities used the same methods. 2005). such as statistical sampling.. There are also cases where community-based monitoring is initiated for national inventories or national research purposes (Skutsch and Trines. In this case. and both found that the amount provided were not sufficient (Andrianandrasana et al. 2011). Standards and Protocols Monitoring for REDD+ will necessitate consistent and comparable data collection across sub-national jurisdictions. 2002). 2008). This type of monitoring will be important for REDD+. maps.. this is also referred to as autonomous local monitoring (Danielsen et al. and setting up permanent sample plots (Skutsch and Trines. 2003). even one week of field-based training can be sufficient to collect data for forest inventories (Skutsch et al. 2009). 2008). cameras). Consultants can then continue supervision and support of more challenging tasks... Examples include the event-book system in Namibia (Stuart-Hill et al. Stuart-Hill et al.

McCall (2011) argues that these technologies put local knowledge ‘on par’ with knowledge from outside experts. and the provision of capacity building on. 2011). for example. 2010). Quality assessment and control In order to incorporate forest monitoring into a national GHG inventory and reporting system. Data is frequently sent “upward” to be analyzed and used for management. 2011).2. (2011) found that many projects demonstrate successful aggregation of data across sub-national jurisdictions into a central database. will feed data on forest carbon stocks into Mozambique’s national GHG inventory (Envirotrade. and a mix of youth and elders chosen by the community into monitoring teams. the respective knowledge and strengths of each participant are shared amongst the group. data must be retained by community members so they can use it in their own decision-making processes (Stuart-Hill et al. and environmental context of communities and forests. Technical systems and equipment All of the case studies examined employed some form of advanced technology such as GPS or computer software for collecting and storing data. For example. community-based monitoring activities. systematic data collection. allow communities to assess tradeoffs between alternative forest uses and enable the evaluation of management impacts on forest resources. developing clear processes for engaging communities. 2003). skill development of participants. Data management and aggregation systems For data from local monitoring systems to be useful at larger geographic scales. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. a database system is needed that enables local data to be uploaded and shared (Pratihast and Herold. and periodic quality assessment of. hunters. and easy data sharing (Parmer Fry. additional training is provided (Scolel Tѐ. 7.5 Conclusion Community-based monitoring has several potential roles in the future of REDD+.. Depending on the circumstances of the study area. 10 percent of community-based monitoring is verified by project technical staff. different approaches regarding the use of advanced technologies can be used. By including a cross section of the community. 2008). provided countries assess the rights. 2012). younger participants learned to use the systems more readily. Further.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 170 .. cultural. the SocioBosque program in Ecuador addresses the issue of exposure to GPS-enabled cell phones by grouping forest guards. data management systems should be designed to ensure that data collected by local community members is securely managed. a quality control system should be put in place to assess the accuracy of data collected by local community members. This indicates that existing payment structures may not be sufficient to support community-based monitoring in the long-term. Providing feedback knowledge will contribute to planning. Benefits of using these systems include increased accuracy. 2011). roles and relationships between communities and the broader social. and elders and hunters have more experience with species identification and in-depth historical knowledge (Cerda. but the results of this analysis and its broader implications are not communicated clearly to communities (Ojha and Bhattarai. For example. Several considerations in designing community-based components of REDD+ monitoring include: consulting with communities on the purpose of monitoring for REDD+. designing information sharing systems that integrate with REDD+ (social and environmental) safeguards processes. such as access to electricity and internet or comfort level of community members with sophisticated software platforms. and how the information collected will be used is clearly defined (CIGA- REDD. Forest guards are comfortable with the technology. If inconsistencies or inaccuracies are identified. in the Scolel Tѐ project in Mexico. 2012). 2005). The Sofala Community Carbon Project in al. Additionally. simplification of validation. capture of media such as photos or audio. reduced data loss. Effah et al.

M. Rueda. M. Buckley. B. data aggregation systems and capacity building. Jones. H. Skielboe. J. Biodiversity and Conservation 14(11): 2757-2774. L. J. monitoring carried out by community members enables and supports their participation in developing and implementing national REDD+ strategies. H. F. Jensen. Massao. S.D. Lewis. Poulsen. R. Blomley.E. M. Mexico City. Balmford. J. B. 7. M.K. Cerda. D. Nozawa and A. S.2. Topp- Jørgensen and D. R. Mwangi and P. Jensen. S. P.. A simple system for monitoring biodiversity in protected areas of a developing country.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 171 . P. CT.. Ratsimbazafy. Murdiyarso. D. 2011. B.H. M. Biodiversity and Conservation. A. P. Fjeldså. Sørensen. UNAM. Johns. M. Evans. Danielsen.. C. 2008. Rep. N. Durbin. 2011. Proc. T.P. Dalle. 2000. 2011. 2006. Pohnan and A. P. P.R. G. Caballero and T. S. Biodiversity and Conservation 9: 1671– 1705. In addition. the system must be supported by appropriate incentives. 2005. Massao.. Lewis and J. J. Lovett. R. Concepts and Lessons Learned. Local participation in natural resource monitoring: A characterization of approaches. Holt. J. M. Danielsen. Theilade 2011. R. R.Herold. 2012. J. an explicit mandate of the Cancun Agreements (Paragraph 72). Hübertz. J. Y. M. Yale School of Forestry. D. F. cultural perceptions and land‐use/land cover data for assessing the success of community‐based conservation. J. and I. Integrating analyses of local landuse regulations. 2012. R. 2005. Effah. Bennun. Guariguata. S. CIFOR. Forest Ecology and Management 222(1‐3): 370‐383. Balete.P. E. Finally. DeFries.. N. Alviola.. Bogor. Personal communication. Danielsen. standards.F. Conservation International. Funder.E. of FCPF Workshop Linking Community Monitoring to National MRV for REDD+. Phartiyal. Input Paper No 3 of FCPF Workshop Linking Community Monitoring to National MRV for REDD+. Conservation Biology 23(1): 31-42. Stuart-Hill.D.S. de Blois. Yonten. T.E. Jensen.K. Ngaga. R. 14: 2757-2774. Enghoff. de Souza. Danielsen F. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Schlamadinger and C. J. Mulwa. Enghoff. Zahabu. M. Burgess. while community-based monitoring can contribute to a REDD+ MRV system at the national level. K. 2010. May. E..6 References Andrianandrasana. Participatory Monitoring in Tropical Forest Management: A Review of Tools. Environmental Science & Policy 10(4): 385‐394.M. Participatory ecological monitoring of the Alaotra wetlands in Madagascar. New Haven.K. Y. Community Based Monitoring of Forest and Carbon Stocks: Lessons for the REDD+ Negotiations at COP 17. Randriamahefasoa. Yeh. Mexico City. Poulsen. CIGA-REDD.As discussed above. Sofala Community Carbon Project Design Document. Achard. F.M. S. Balete. M. 2007. Indonesia. Ngaga. Mendoza.M. 2008. P. Matiku. P. recent research has demonstrated that data collected via community-based monitoring can be as reliable and policy-relevant as data collected by external technical consultants. Brown. At the heart of REDD+: A role for local people in monitoring forests? Conservation Letters 4: 158-167. Earth observations for estimating greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation in developing countries. Tewari. Karky. Solis. T. A. Poulsen. Sam.C. Child. M. Jensen. Envirotrade. A. J. S. Young and E.S. Potential fit of community-level monitoring of biodiversity and socio- economic outcomes with national REDD+ programmes. F. Andrianandrasana. Skutsch. Burgess. Donald. Singh. M.. Brashares. Monitoring important bird areas in Africa: towards a sustainable and scaleable system. and M. H.

156.C. H. GOFC-GOLD. H. Collective action and learning in developing a local monitoring system. Policy seminar convened by the Environmental Change Institute. McCall. 2005. gains and losses of carbon stocks in forests remaining forests.P. B. Oetting and R. T. 2011. The Netherlands). Ballard and V.K. A. p. Mexico City. Palmer Fry. 2010. A. E. A.. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Elphick. and M. London. In Zhu. Biodiversity and Conservation 17(8): 2023-2036. H. Adaptive management and social learning in collaborative and community-based monitoring: a study of five community-based forestry organizations in the western USA. M. McCall. Skutsch and L. A. M. and forestation. A. Bhattarai. p14. 2008. L. 2008. Knowles. M. Pratihast. Lawrence. eds. Hunter self-monitoring by the Isoseño-Guaraní in the Bolivian Chaco. 2002. Lorenzo. Frio. Holck. M. and M. M.K. International Forestry Review 5: 118-127. M. 2011. 2003. Hartanto. McCall. Earthscan. Skutsch. Mustalahti and E. A sourcebook of methods and procedures for monitoring and reporting anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and removals associated with deforestation. T. M Zaballa Romero. A Review of Experience of Community Monitoring for REDD+.Fernandez-Gimenez.B. Oxford.. Pathways for Implementing REDD+. Noss. Zahabu. Policy implications of participatory biodiversity assessment – summary report. R. Dawson. Larrazábal. Community Based Monitoring and potential links with National REDD+ MRV. Denmark: Technical University of Denmark. M.. 2012. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD. E. UK.L. Wageningen University. Herold. I. 2005. Projects come. Environmental Change Institute. L. Seeking good governance in participatory-GIS: a review of processes and governance dimensions in applying GIS to participatory spatial planning. and B. Input Paper No 1 of FCPF Workshop Linking Community Monitoring to National MRV for REDD+. Cuéllar. M. 2011. ed. Biodiversity and Conservation 14: 2679-2693. Ojha. 2003. Patenaude.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 172 . UK. projects go: lessons from participaotry monitoring in southern Laos. Theron.K.X. Local Participation in Mapping. Mukama. Environmental Science & Policy 8(2): 161-178. Participatory Forest Carbon Assessment and REDD+: Learning from Tanzania. Input Paper No 2 of FCPF Workshop Linking Community Monitoring to National MRV for REDD+.. Biodiversity and Conservation 14: 2591-2610.. Chapter 3 in Skutsch.. Milne and T. Article ID 126454. Poulsen. Ecology and Society 13(2): 4.L. 2005. Sturtevant. 2013. I. experiences from Carbon Markets and Communities. G. Measuring and Monitoring for Community Carbon Forestry. and K.. Community Forest Monitoring in REDD+: The ‘M’ in MRV? Environmental Science & Policy 14(2): 181-187. H. Luanglath. International Forestry Review 4(3): 184-195. 2011. K. Preparing Community Forestry for REDD+: Engaging Local Communities in the Mapping and MRV Requirements of REDD+. M. GOFC-GOLD Report version COP19-2 (GOFC-GOLD Land Cover Project Office. Synthesis of remote sensing approaches for forest carbon estimation: Reporting to the Kyoto Protocol. 2002. Roskilde. ETFRN. eds. and M.. Participatory forest monitoring: An assessment of the accuracy of simple cost-effective methods. Ravnkilde Møller. Mexico City. De Lopez. Habitat International 27: 549-573. International Journal of Forestry Research. Learning to manage a complex resource: a case of NTFP assessment in Nepal.P.

Rist. Skutsch. ed.. and M. M. K. Milner-Gulland and J. UK... Chapter 6 in Skutsch. and E. M.. P. and S. Diggle. Danielsen.. Earthscan REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Samar. Chapter 5 in Skutsch. London. 2011. UNFCCC.. Peters-Guarin. AMBIO. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD. 2005. Ghazoul. McCall. London. 2011. Draft decision–/CP. measuring and reporting.. Earthscan. ed. London. Earthscan.4 in GOFC-GOLD: Reducing GHG emissions from deforestation and degradation in developing countries: a sourcebook of methods and procedures for monitoring. Tagg and D. Shaanker. R. M.F. M. Skutsch and M. Uk. Rome. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD. Biodiversity and Conservation 14: 2653-2677. Chapter 3.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 173 . C. M. M. The Event Book System: a community- based natural resource monitoring system from Namibia. J. McCall. Tease. Blay. Skutsch. 2009. ed. S. Canada. Earthscan. Karky. London. Karky and F. FAO. Scolel-Te. Case Studies on Measuring and Assessing Forest Degradation: Community Measurement of Carbon Stock Change for REDD.. Ward. Earthscan. Johnson. Van Laake. 2010.pdf Van Laake. M. 2010. UK. J. ed. Solis.. Ecology and Society 15(1): 3. Munali.16. R. Outcome of the work of the ad hoc working group on long‐term cooperative action under the Convention. Trines. M. Zahabu and G. 2011. Why Community Forest Monitoring? Chapter 1 in Skutsch. 2011. Opportunities and capacity for community-based forest carbon sequestration and monitoring in Ghana. F. J. ed. Lund and J. Alberta. Italy. E. B. Asumadu. Skutsch.. Biodiversity and Conservation 14: 2611–2631. Stanturf and D.. E. How Much Carbon Does Community Forest Management Save? Chapter 2 in Skutsch. 2005. The Costs and Reliability of Forest Carbon Monitoring by Communities. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD.E. G. Topp-Jørgensen. P. London. M. M. The Policy Context of Community Monitoring for REDD+. J. Report version COP14-2. B. 2009. U. B.K..F. M. Available at: http://unfccc. Skutsch. 2010. Zahabu. Scolel Te Operational Manual: Natural Resources Management and Carbon Sequestration. UK. UK. Data collection and national/local level. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD. Chapter 4 in Skutsch.S. The use of traditional ecological knowledge in forest management: An example from india. Stuart-Hill. Poulsen. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD. Skutsch. 2011. Schelhas. Information Requirements for National REDD+ Programmes.J. K. Massao. E. Community-based monitoring of natural resource use and forest quality in montane forests and miombo woodlands of Tanzania.K. 2008. Nature & Faune 25(1): 35-39. M. Forest Resources Assessment Working Paper 156. M. E. McCall.

0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 174 . the participation between $0. records Assistance water quality higher were able to of user Program and increased administrative rapidly turn permits and prestige. village (two disturbance. 2005 District.. environment Bitterlich gauge conferred $0. levels. the District include were portion of this went monitoring and information government recognition of reported to setting up the data analysis. ropes supervision additionally are estimated to be collected data (determined village methods. Resource developed developing ~ $1/day. similar to by burns. Natural data and local million for the Resource Tanzania abundance of Committees protocols system Other Resource management entire project. Village Natural Locally Not specified Guidance in Monitors paid Village Monitoring Estimated $3 Village Natural et al. two members the and prestige costs of local of WCS Disturbance monitoring Tanzania) Checklist would enable transect more frequent and sustainable data collection Topp-Jørgensen Iringa Resource use. Table 7. records records are management of meetings kept decisions based and trainings publically on this available at information the village REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. stumps) committee. disturbance. and all around quick fees. and some approximately for monitoring training and Tanzania basal area. costs with full day Reserve. breast height.3: Case studies of community monitoring Case Study Location What Who What What What training What Who How was What was the cost Summary information conducted the standards were equipment was provided incentives conducted data of project? was gathered? monitoring? used? was used? to participants? were provided data aggregated at to monitors? compiling the national and analysis? or regional level? Holck 2008 Uluguru Tree Four elected Three methods Measuring Half-day and Participants Study No Once training has Participants North Forest diameter at participants of monitoring tapes. forest disturbance supervision disturbance members of the 20-tress gauge. on resource and the Danish the value for monthly to monitoring system and as a result use.not Committees indicator provided by incentives Committees decisions specified which managed species.12/ha/yr.25 per day. method and knowledge counterparts. from each flora paper. Bitterlich follow-up $6. pen and full day training received authors aggregation been done. 'expert' cuts.04 .

Teams catch compass. example marsh water and identification. paint. Three Change in Between 24 . Durrell Wildlife via transects. and analyzes priority enforcement change in size community discussions. amount in compiling monitoring responsible for Northern sightings of the park field diary. Multiple Notebook. are trained $2/day.) adaptive march areas. bird upfront and less than presented to orally to the ($0. GPS.may public data sheets information rates technicians observation scales. designated host NGOs.. The protected monitoring are Sierra Madre. No attractive community authorities. methodologies. Standard field guide on the type of employment on the radio reduced over fishery service.000/yr. lemur further detail because the meetings and fires were forest services.Danielsen et al. plans.for (from regional and management years. participants earned ~ information data approximately authorities Madagascar waterbirds. development 16 sites provided as a technical NGOs) expert REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. field over a period paid to park are involved for the staff areas. field guide. binoculars. This is was presented $5. 2005 wetlands. Monitoring Participants The Monitoring All costs Local et al. Conservation interviews. documentation. of 10 villagers observations. binoculars. frequency of park including developed. altimeter. change methods were tape measure experts were makes time of communities in perceived developed made for management writing. string. methodologies is key to buy in and long term capacity Andrianandrasana Alaotra Data on Organized by Data collected Canoe. of three years. film. maps. and protected (in order to of vegetation members Standards and sheets. watch. Capacity built Salaries were All park staff The system Not specified Important that 2000 protected number and 36 staff per methods pen. data Regular visits the data. listed superintendent. species and local forest transect walk. photo camera. effectively). Stakeholders not specified the data. staff. involved in the head of the areas was different from Bataan.. compass.21/ha/yr. Trust. M. guide. demonstrated fish catches. development protected being scaled those Kitanglad. guards and focus group GPS. lemurs. site subsequent have been through kept by local collected. by outside directly areas at the engage local types. then employed income from the general public and response to and hunting and 7 and species weighing again in fishing. A Involvement of Manual for park staff each field throughout the method and development indicator was and testing of prepared. and testing of area gathers to other responsible for Philippines resource use. methods were content of conferred the course of and used across the training special status the project.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 175 . harvest through assistance and decisions volume in national supervision based on this biodiversity collaborative result impacting process and activities field testing.

017/ha/yr and abundance trends in method. of various Conservation list of priority teams of 2-6 Society trained in annual salary. report to the conservation detailed site. provided to it. and adds national IBA standardize. individuals' in that deterioration forwards the deforestation. leading protect area funding to cooperation staff stopped and improved co- management REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. reports filed including 4-5 methods may Area. methods were between joint used Monitoring villagers and monitoring by stopped once park staff builds villagers and external trust. hunted though Villagers were wildlife standards were not paid species and not strictly non-timber enforced and Strong forest three main relationships products. 49 sites in Effectiveness Bird Life 'Site IBAs provide Not specified Not specified Not specified.local indicator (e. varied by site Poulsen and Xe Pian Walk through Depending on Wildlife Not specified Conservation Conservation Monitoring Not specified A week of A combination Luanglath. 2005 Biodiversity focusing on the method Conservation area staff were area staff paid forms and monitoring.Bennun et al. checks develops difficult to areas via autonomous habitat quality. world where method database. of indicators country number of Additionally. a use the main field approximately of resource use of status and monitoring monitoring allowances of $0.g. monitoring of partners of number of site support other status something that populations of Bird Life conservation groups from research to reports using Bird Life has relevant International staff) and space Bird Life develop an data from recognized and species and made up of for scoring International overall score each IBA. costs be the best villager selected during together with monitoring and support Management approximately way to get a interviews to village meeting. is working to threats to government improvement of Additionally improve.. Central IBA Bird Life Not specified This method is 2005 Kenya of IBA Support Group' forms with some financial unit compiles International subjective and conservation staff. This holistic determine and protected area staff and raising. support data. these species staff and 'other or improvement Bird Life (including knowledgeable deterioration or International habitat area. Laos species. international staff) specific secretariat to monitoring compile in a encouraged. conservation awareness provided for Unit's office $100. villagers established. biodiversity external at the Park villages. and can logistics and equivalent to representation perceptions area staff villagers. indicator. methods $5 per day.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 176 .

) age collaboration information. after 6 summarize number of costs weight and project in record record months the data every 6. Conservation data sheets pens. members also individuals on meetings number of Active hunters carry out line a part time held to hunters in and community transect basis in each present the the park members surveys of nine community results and conducted principal game discuss monitoring species possible interventions REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. organized and hunting spring scales.Noss et al.015/ha/yr. hunting program hired 12 months. specified on volunteer monthly and from the and transportation catch size. hunters ($0. supplies Park. 2005 Kaa-Iya del Species Wildlife Hunters carry Data sheets. tape provided. Training is Hunters Community Study authors Approximately Gran Chaco abundance.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 177 . supported the excursions to GPS used to basis.000 per year National catch per unit Society with them on measures. details not participated analyze data extrapolate for salaries. initially monitors use data to $50. participating with Park Community locations 7-10 Community to the total administration.. Bolivia effort rates.

challenges forest could have inventory been due to methods. objectives. allometric sample size types. $15/day for authors transect and biomass in gumboots. discussion cover using locally strata Tanzania to stratify gauge tape methods were opportunity derived or boundaries.. forest into communities measures.84/ha/monitoring included using Angai Villages mapping. be involved relascopes.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 178 .56 .Mukama et al. group including group as sufficient to biomass vegetation Reserve. transect walks discussions to diameter taps. concepts and community equations requirements. permanent GPS. introduce participants. used to costs of generalized calculating vegetation willingness to calipers. Challenges 2012 within the forest were selected Rural Appraisal inventory rural appraisal $4/day ( this of tree $0. locations establishing permanent Some of these sample plots. Three villages Participator Eight villagers Participatory Forest Participatory Approximately Calculations Not specified $0. use the short of equipment training time allocated Successful implementation will depend on collaboration between local communities and facilitating organizations for GIS and carbon data analysis REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Training was future work) permanent trees over transportation provided on sample plot time using GPS. and proposed ~ by study determining to measure also gauge interest. research members completed and sample plots hypsometers. in each to map forest equipment and focus was not seen volume and event GPS to mark Land Forest forest community area.

with local via school high and quarterly so for data income people's reports. Participants Not specified Monitoring Not Not specified Wide range of 2002 Tanabag and on social and framework developed for varied by type involved in results specified. communities. capabilities bulletin and forest and department financial boards. of data developing shared primary goal indicator data Multipurpose criteria. surveys.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 179 . and coastal of environment reports via More management and natural organization training resources record books. aggregation collection sources. varied skill set quality. during three for example collection criteria and through is to feedback highlights needs Cooperative. monthly line with and not strengthened village council income via existing community prioritized organizations. needed to officials. representatives.. San Rafael Information Monitoring Indicators Not specified. methods in newsletters. so monthly data to local for highly Philippines education discussions pupils in school awareness is meetings.Hartanto et al. including workshops and number of indicators. organization. required Concepcion environmental developed each criteria. Local and number of gauge people's trees via data success of organizations reports management conducted monitoring REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.

as quota Where are made who in turn setting. events workshops). provided on compilation data from there were conservancies themes have members) involved and copied data collection and analysis each long time lags in six national been decided what for archival in and reporting is conducted community is before the parks. monitoring is available to report to allocation of driven by local local conservancy technical priorities it communities manager or support. national analysis was example community Each year monitoring returned to rainfall. of understood by predator developed and Community Environment community abundance. of fire. tools for data collect data.Stuart-Hill 2005 30 Protocols for Field staff The All forms are Training is Not specified All data Each year the Not specified Traditionally community monitoring 21 (conservancies communities paper-based. monitoring 21 to a form to database and tables wildlife standard evaluate belonging to were not mortalities. themes have long-term the Ministry intuitively fish or been trends. standards for transferred evaluation and the graphs poaching. report this strategic community reporting and to natural decision priorities analysis of long resource making such term trends supervisors. or may not be elected compliance comprehensive. kits containing rangers and Tourism members etc.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 180 . chairman monitoring where society deems other indicators worth monitoring appropriate incentives must be provided REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. totals are and communities. indicators to a storage box by local copied to a results of data Namibia including for monitor (via communities.. developed. and used for depending on collection.

wildfire.3.1 Introduction Near real-time (NRT) forest monitoring involves the tracking of forest threats or disturbances to minimize the lag time between monitoring observations and the dissemination of critical information necessary for responding. thus strengthening public pressure for improved governance and reform. providing a platform for NRT surveillance of forest resources. NRT forest monitoring and the distribution of alerts.7. encroachment. This section summarizes the characteristics of NRT monitoring. intervening and reducing the impacts of detected threats. Frequent NRT alerts that track and facilitate active reporting on patterns of new deforestation. and many countries are considering including NRT monitoring in the development of their National Forest Monitoring Systems (NFMS). where local communities either receive NRT information. Such monitoring increases transparency and may deter future activities that contribute to forest loss or degradation. Knowledge that illegal forest activity can be tracked in almost real-time helps deter future illegal activity when those involved realize that their assumed difficult-to-monitor practices can.3 NEAR-REAL TIME MONITORING AND ALERT SYSTEMS Author: John Musinsky 7. indirect benefits due to its rapid-response nature.3. In addition to the many REDD+-related benefits.2 Background Remote sensing-based NRT forest monitoring and alert systems are among the most underutilized tools for helping manage and protect forest resources. degradation. it represents an additional monitoring component that enables more efficient enforcement and governance. fire and logging throughout the year help institutions design management plans REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Public access to NRT information on the existence and rate of expansion of a deforestation or forest degradation activity increases transparency about the effectiveness of institutions responsible for controlling such activity. bringing new opportunities for employing multiple streams of NRT forest monitoring data for decision support and use in Measurement. Reporting and Verification (MRV) systems. NRT alerts facilitate distribution of information in a streamlined user-customized form that can help overcome communication bottlenecks. or contribute to NRT monitoring via analysis or confirmation. NRT forest monitoring complements the periodic (annual or decadal) remote sensing-based analysis of forest extent and change conducted as part of MRV. NRT forest monitoring can strengthen enforcement and governance at local levels. NRT monitoring need not be part of the data analysis that produces quantitative estimates of forest cover and GHG emissions. instead. in fact. NRT monitoring is not a requirement for national greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting or inclusion in a national MRV system. Satellite and mobile technologies are also continually evolving. A range of publically available satellite image resources exist that can be adapted to NRT analysis and reporting. though there are significant benefits that can come from the application of NRT as part of MRV. There is also much potential for linking NRT monitoring with community-based monitoring and community-based management. and more rapid adjustment of REDD+ strategies to changing circumstances. facilitate effective forest management while ensuring local customs and rights are respected. combined with community-based monitoring. Many countries could benefit from the possibilities presented by NRT monitoring within their national forest management and monitoring strategies. be monitored and thwarted. and describes some of the more advanced satellite-based NRT applications and case studies. and potentially other phenomena “in-action”. NRT forest monitoring can provide multiple. thus ensuring as much forest carbon is protected as possible. It provides an effective project implementation and adaptive management tool for responding to immediate forest threats. By enabling a rapid response to deforestation. 7.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 181 .

Finally. Most satellite imagery used for forest monitoring in the tropics is acquired by sensors onboard polar-orbiting satellites such as Landsat. with higher spatial resolutions. Terra and Aqua. providing uninterrupted observations of the ground).that accommodate the intra. resulting in regular and more frequent image availability.000km. NRT monitoring data may be validated using independent. Each condition is discussed in detail below. and 4) optical data are generally cheaper. And.and the forest structure information provided by both RADAR and LiDAR instruments. However.3 Existing near real-time forest monitoring satellite technologies There are a range of existing and planned satellite technologies that are uniquely suited to providing NRT information due to their spatial and temporal characteristics. yielding coarse pixel resolution that limits their utility for monitoring small-scale forest disturbance like slash-and-burn deforestation or degradation.and inter-annual variability in spatial and temporal patterns of fire and associated deforestation and illegal logging activity.4 Technical considerations for NRT monitoring systems Effective NRT monitoring depends on the following conditions: i) access to frequent or continuous contaminant-free/cloud-free data for both automated and Manual interpretation. Optical remote sensing data are generally the most suitable data for NRT monitoring because: i) moderately trained remote sensing analysts can readily detect and interpret changes to forest extent and structure when using optical data.3. However. but lower temporal resolutions. most geostationary satellites are located at an altitude of around 35. to maintain their geosynchronous orbits.g. and the high cost of both RADAR and LiDAR mean these are currently not practical as NRT data sources.g. ii) data with adequate spatial resolution to enable the direct detection of a forest disturbance activity in progress (e.. and future geostationary satellites (e.3. while polar-orbiting satellites (orbiting at an altitude of less than 1000km) provide a cost- effective approach to gathering comprehensive. etc. which can be useful when monitoring subtle changes due to forest degradation. of which the latter two carry the MODIS instrument as a payload. these include a RADAR instrument’s ability to see through clouds -. Geostationary satellite data are nevertheless useful for NRT detection of fires due to the thermal sensitivities of the detectors. one disadvantage of polar-orbiting satellites for NRT monitoring is the resultant temporal gaps in the data record. highlighting risks associated with supply chains of commercial crops such as palm oil. iii) the image archives are spatially and temporally more complete. CBERS. Both RADAR and LiDAR data have unique attributes that may make them useful for NRT monitoring in certain circumstances. An alternate source of NRT remote sensing data are geostationary satellites (satellites that hover continually over the same point on the ground as the earth revolves. sufficient geographical precision to enable ground- based personnel to navigate to the location where the disturbance occurred.. FY‐4) with 1km visible and near-infrared bands may be more suitable for uninterrupted NRT monitoring of moderate-scale forest activity.a major advantage in perennially cloud-covered areas -. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. fire). GOES‐R. the lack of frequent acquisition or comprehensive spatial coverage of LiDAR data. 7. CBERS. and iv) when monitoring represents part of a field-based response or enforcement. field-based information to determine its accuracy.. iii) minimal lag time between the disturbance and resultant detection to enable effective action. As part of this process. This is particularly true for instruments such as Landsat. the technical challenges inherent in processing and interpreting RADAR data. NRT forest monitoring helps address issues of sustainable commodity value chains by providing timely information.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 182 . 7. or the indirect detection of disturbance post-activity in terms of altered physical forest structure or biomass lost. ii) the individual image footprints from optical instruments are generally larger and have a shorter re-visit time. planet-wide imagery.

25-0.e.65m). while Landsat 7 processing averages 1-3 days between image acquisition and distribution. Quickbird (0. Landsat images can be used to classify patches of deforestation 0. ASTER scenes are only available to the user 7-10 days after acquisition.5-6m). the satellite data used to detect forest activities must be acquired.“false-positive” detections may result from what appears to be new activity that is. For example.4m) or GeoEye-1 (0. or considerably longer when the analysis is performed Manually (either through computer-assisted classifications or Manual digitizing). 2003). Latency To effectively contribute to field-based responses to undesirable or illegal forest activity. SPOT-5 (5-10m). 30m. older disturbance.. on the order of two to three hours for MODIS data (O’Neal.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 183 . Finally. The Nataional Aeronautics and Space Agency (NASA)’s Near Real Time Processing Effort (NRTPE) for Earth Observation System (EOS) products utilizes data with very short latencies. 2005). the lag time may be substantially longer if cloud cover exists and additional satellite image acquisitions are required before cloud-free data are available. care must be used when co-analyzing multiple data sources with different spatial resolutions as certain small-scale activities may be detected in the higher resolution but not the lower resolution data. lower-resolution data. recently acquired higher resolution data are co- analyzed with older. and reported with minimal time delay. native resolution. This lag time may be very short when employing automated analytical processing systems. as well as merged products based on these data. to identify activities associated with Reduced Impact Logging (RIL). However. In addition to the satellite data latency. Latency refers to the delay between satellite observation and product delivery to users. If. very small-scale activities require high-resolution satellite data such as RapidEye (6. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Landsat 8 images are available for download within 12 hours of acquisition. including the deployment of environmental law enforcement officials or the coordination of community-based monitoring personnel.. (2003) used visual interpretation of 1m panchromatic and 4m multispectral IKONOS data.5-1. Thermal channels on many earth-observing satellite platforms are designed to accurately detect the large quantities of thermal radiation (heat) emitted from ground-fires. alternative data acquisition and processing strategies may be used. field studies in different environments and under different viewing conditions have shown that the 1km resolution thermal bands on MODIS are able to accurately detect open ground fires covering an area of only 100m2 when their temperature is sufficiently high and where observing conditions are good (Giglio et al.75 hectares and larger. For example. co- analysis may be performed using multiple data sources (such as Landsat with ASTER. For example. The sum of all these sources of delay is the functional latency of the NRT monitoring system.50 hectares. a lag exists during the image analysis phase and in distribution of data to end-users.5m). for example. Medium-scale imagery. These thermal bands have pixels that cover much larger areas than the fires they are able to detect. Generally. CBERS or SPOT) over the same geographical areas and time frames. a time lag often exists between the actual forest activity and the moment the satellite observes the disturbance. such as 15m resolution pan-sharpened Landsat imagery can also be useful in detecting moderate-scale forest activities like slash-and-burn agriculture on the order of 0. i. Brazil. in Amazonas.Cloud-free data Cloud contamination represents one of the biggest challenges in using optical satellite imagery for NRT forest monitoring. To compensate for excessive cloud contamination or temporal gaps in the data records of high- resolution satellite data. IKONOS (1-4m). multiple pixels of optical data are required to effectively delineate features on the ground. Spatial resolution The spatial resolution of the satellite data must match the scale of the landuse or resource extraction activity contributing to deforestation or forest degradation. These activities included road openings and treefall gaps. interpreted. in fact.7- 2. Read (2003) and Read et al. Though this time lag may in theory be small – for example a maximum of four hours when using MODIS data to monitor fires or up to 21 days when using Landsat to monitor deforestation – in practice. SPOT-6 (1. The relationship between pixel size and an observed phenomenon is somewhat different for the detection of active fires.

In certain cases. the University of Maryland (UMD) and host-country institutions enabled the development of a suite of NRT fire and deforestation monitoring and forecasting applications that channeled satellite observations directly to international users responsible for decision- making activities and actions related to wildfires. Given the prevalence worldwide of GPS-enabled mobile smart phone technology and data sharing through blogs and social networks. The monitoring of deforestation. Nevertheless. while strengthening decision support activities aimed at prevention. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. it can negatively impact the provider instutution and. The accuracy of many NRT forest monitoring products often lacks systematic validation.In addition to spatial resolution. field-based forest managers. a system can still be useful for guiding adaptive management activities even when latency is high. fire incidence and fire risk provides critical summary and trend data to help inform policy.3. latency is one of the factors that will determine the effectiveness of the system.g. And as mentioned. Fire risk forecasts are important in facilitating advanced preparation aimed at averting. Precision and validation High-resolution satellite imagery such as Landsat are usually pre-processed by satellite data providers to a maximum root mean square (RMS) error of less than 50m. and enhances the ability of national and sub- national governments to respond to threats in a strategic manner.. In contrast. These applications included: the Fire Alert System (FAS). the Fire Risk System and the Deforestation and Encroachment Alert System. Several NRT monitoring systems are described below. the lower the temporal resolution.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 184 . Developing privacy safeguards and field data verification controls are a critical part of this process. Latency is particularly important when tracking forest degradation as the spectral signal can rapidly disappear due to vegetation regrowth. local NGOs and local communities of wildfire activity. there is a trade-off between spatial resolution and temporal resolution: the higher the spatial resolution. This is partly due to the nature of near real-time information where the primary concern is speed of data delivery.. GPS- tagged photos) and provide feedback for validation of NRT forest monitoring data.5 Examples of existing NRT forest monitoring systems NRT monitoring with earth observation satellite data can help overcome many challenges associated with reducing illegal or undesirable forest activities and their impacts. both to guarantee the safety of individuals submitting information (e. the longer the gaps. encroachment and fire related to REDD+.g. Operating from 2003-2013. Some existing NRT monitoring systems are being configured to capture this information via smart phone applications and blogs. more broadly. preparedness. reporting on illegal forest activity) and to ensure that field data are accurate. 7. accuracy is a critical factor in building and sustaining user confidence in NRT products. and response to deforestation. there is now ample opportunity for users to collect field observations (e. reducing and managing deforestation related to out-of- control wildfire. patrols. the longer the gaps between repeat data acquisitions. CI Fire Alert / Fire Risk / Deforestation and Encroachment Alert Systems A partnership between Conservation International (CI). NRT monitoring plays a critical role in alerting park administrators. However. if data accuracy is questionable. the greater the latency and the less effective the system will be for rapid response. and the geographic locations of forest activity detected with these data are sufficiently precise that field personnel using a consumer-grade GPS can track and locate the activity based on the reported locations extracted from the imagery. planning and land management decisions. undermine people’s willingness to use NRT data as a source of information for decision making. governments have refused to use data from NRT forest monitoring systems that have not been officially vetted or designated as a certified data provider. the lower the temporal resolution. the geographic locations of active fire detections produced by MODIS are determined by the center point of the 1km2 thermal channel pixel. complicating navigation to the reported fire activity. The actual location of the fire detected by MODIS may be located up to 500m from the centerpoint of the pixel. encroachment.

delivering email alerts using MODIS active fire observations from UMD’s Web Fire Mapper overlaid on all protected areas in Brazil. single monitoring. protected areas management. Namibia. The Deforestation and Encroachment Alert System was a NRT alert system founded on rapid analysis of Landsat and ASTER imagery. South Africa and Tanzania. REDD+ forest carbon projects. Firecast 48. 48 http://firecast. FAS has since expanded to include Bolivia. Bolivia. FAS began in 2002.conservation. In 2014. Paraguay. Peru and the Indonesian islands of Sumatra and Kalimantan. In 2007. and forest conversion. 2013). Musinsky et al. With more than 1. The Fire Risk System was an automated daily risk model that estimated moisture fluctuations in litter fuels on the forest floor with daily inputs from MODIS and other weather satellites. GIS shapefiles and GoogleEarth KML files of fires occurring within user-defined areas of interest.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 185 . Madagascar. It also added public access to suspected illegal activity alerts generated for parks in Indonesia. and policy development related to conservation and sustainable development.300 subscribers from 45 countries. among others (NASA 2010. decribed below. users of these monitoring systems developed critical applications for NRT data and alerts in forest law enforcement. forecasting and alert system.3). with access to online reports and maps. fire suppression. and included email attachments with custom images. an automated version of FAS for Madagascar began sending real-time data generated by MODIS RapidFire to field personnel and government agencies responsible for natural areas management.FAS was an automated and customizable alert delivery system based on MODIS active fire data generated by NASA that provided subscribers with a range of products tailored to their needs (Figure 7. text files. community REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. these systems were integrated into a new.

2013). The model is based on the relationship between moisture content and flammability of fuels on the forest floor (i. The Fire Risk System uses NRT satellite estimates as inputs to the US Forest Service Fire Danger Rating System equations for estimating the moisture content of fuels. The model assumes that fuel is ignitable at moisture contents of 20 percent or less. temperature and humidity. and fuel moisture fluctuates with rainfall events. The model outputs are currently used by REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. daily rainfall sum. The Fire Risk System is an online application using satellite bioclimatology to model forest flammability (Steininger et al.Figure 7. days since last rainfall and the commonly used Keetch-Byram Drought Index. The satellite observations used in this model represent rainfall duration from TRMM 3B42RT and near- surface temperature and relative humidity from MODIS MOD07L2 Atmospheric Profiles.. Daily maps of forest flammability at 5km resolution are generated based on the previous day's fuel moisture content and the current day's air climate conditions and are distributed through FireCast (Figure 7. based on decades of field experiments by the US Forest Service that quantitatively describe the relationship between fuel moisture and flammability risk.e.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 186 . A subscription and user management page for a fire-alert system (top) and a sample email alert and jpg attachment notifying fire activity in a user-specified area of interest (bottom).3. The model runs nightly and pulls MODIS and TRMM data to generate maps of fire risk. litter and woody debris)..4).

4. ii) enhanced system functionality including user customization. Light grey is non. called FIRECAST.forest (N). The deforestation and encroachment alerts (Figure 7.8 million hectares of protected areas and REDD+ sites in Indonesia and Madagascar. Figure 7. Example of forest flammability model outputs used in an alert system. The Firecast prototype integrates CI’s existing Fire Alert System and Fire Risk System into a more stable and flexible system built in the cloud. that warns of potential severe fire activity months in advance of a fire season.. and dark grey areas are water (W) 49. based on the previous suite of NRT monitoring systems. Reports from counterparts in the field confirmed that the combination of both fire alert and encroachment alert systems catalyzed and guided numerous enforcement campaigns. is now under collaborative development by CI. http://firecast. iii) expansion to new geographies and sectors. 49 From Steininger et al.1) complemented the fire alerts.The Deforestation and Encroachment Alert System used the same approach as that of FAS: NRT delivery of suspected illegal forest activity observations to a range of in-country stakeholders who utilize the information for rapid response. has also been included in the system (Chen et al. Areas from yellow to red indicate moisture values of 20 percent or less.conservation. with support from a NASA Wildland Fires grant. A fire season forecast component developed by researchers at the University of California. leading to apprehension and deterrence of illegal forest activity within national parks. 2011). the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Ames and Goddard. Landsat and ASTER satellite archives were continually surveyed. indicating increasing flammability. Spatial patterns of daily moisture content for coarse fuels. medium grey is forest above 500m ASL (F).Fundación Amigos de la Naturaleza in Bolivia. Data are for July 16. Irvine and NASA. More substantial system enhancements will be implemented in the coming years. a useful indicator of fire risk. a supercomputing environment designed for model development and evaluation. and as new data became available the images were downloaded and analyzed for evidence of encroachment occurring within 2.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 187 . they permitted delineation of deforested areas where fire activity had been detected by MODIS. including: i) delivery of new NRT earth observation products. and the Bolivian forestry department for district and community level communications. A new integrated forest and fire monitoring and forecasting system for improved forest management in the tropics. (2013). while the high-resolution data of Landsat and ASTER are characterized by much greater latency than MODIS REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. and iv) online space for data sharing and collaboration among users. The fire risk model has been geographically expanded and enhanced in NASA’s NEX. 2014.

or used to build up a local database of fires. a data downloading tool that enables users to download MODIS active fire data based on date ranges.nasa.umd. FIRMS processes the NASA MODIS Level 3 Monthly Tiled 500m Burned Area Product 51 and makes it available in images displayed at resolutions of 8 km. email alerts for protected areas. Figure 7. or 2 km. MODIS active fire data are available through FIRMS in a range of easy-to-access data 50 (http://earthdata.5. or weekly summaries. FIRMS is now located at NASA EOSDIS (Earth Observing System Data and Information System) 50. one month at a time. FIRMS has four components: Web Fire Mapper. A buffer around the protected area can also be specified. or selecting a specific country or protected area via drop down boxes. The map image enables users to readily visualize the exact location of the fire. Developed by UMD in conjunction with NASA Goddard. and allows subscribers to choose daily NRT alerts.Fire Information for Resource Management System (FIRMS) The Fire Information for Resource Management System (FIRMS) is the most important and influential NRT fire monitoring system created to date.. 2011.. 2009). The email alert system supports the option to include a map image and a Comma Separated Values (CSV) text file of fire coordinates. 4 km. The email alerts messaging component of FIRMS delivers MODIS active fire information for specified protected areas or user-defined areas of interest. an interactive web-based mapping system created in 2001.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 188 . The open source Web Fire Mapper application allows users to view and query active fire data for any specified date range. Subscribers can specify any area for notification by selecting a rectangle on an interactive map. FIRMS Components (top) and Web Fire Mapper (bottom).gov/data/nrt-data/firms) 51 MOD45A1: REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. and the CSV file can be ingested into a GIS for further analyses. and access to daily MODIS image subsets (Figure 7. Davies et al. and view MODIS burned area images for the entire globe.5) (Justice et al.

The email alert includes a summary of the number of fires detected and an attached tabular list of fires with their attributes in CSV format. The user subscription information captures their area of interest. DETER and PRODES The Brazilian Space Research Agency (INPE) has developed multiple deforestation and fire monitoring tools. DETER data are based on MODIS. and email delivery preferences.inpe. The low spatial resolution used by DETER is compensated for by daily observations that are mosaicked into monthly wall-to-wall assessments of the entire legal Amazon.inpe.inpe.formats. ESRI Shapefiles. PROARCO is a web-based mapping tool publishing daily active fire detections from MODIS. and deforestation events with an area larger than 25 hectares can be detected. in other UN organizations. PROARCO is complemented by the Sistema de Detecção do Desmatamento em Tempo Real na Amazônia (DETER) 54. 52 http://www. KML files. Both the DETER and PROARCO web mapping tools operate in Portuguese. Global Fire Information Management System (GFIMS): The Global Fire Information Management System (GFIMS) integrates remote sensing and GIS technologies to deliver MODIS hotspot/fire locations and burned area information to natural resource managers and other stakeholders around the world. The PRODES system is based on high resolution Landsat and CBERS imagery capable of detecting small-scale deforestation. However.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 189 . some deforested areas will remain undetected due to persistent cloud cover and relatively low spatial resolution (a limitation of all NRT deforestation monitoring systems based on MODIS). DETER is also complemented by annual monitoring of forest removal using INPE’s Projeto de Monitoramento do Desmatamento na Amazônia Legal por Satélite (PRODES) 55. NASA World Wind files and Web Map Service (WMS) files. AVHRR and GOES. and delivers an email alert directly to subscribers by reading a database of user-entered subscription information (user profiles). Daily and weekly fire alerts are sent from the GFIMS system. GFIMS complements existing NRT information systems that deliver data and services to ongoing monitoring and emergency response projects in FAO headquarters and field 55 www. has the advantage of small file size and allows the option of querying attribute information. PROARCO is INPE’s fire monitoring system 53.obt. including CSV text files. such as an ESRI Shapefile. GFIMS is hosted at the Department of Natural Resources (NRD) of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations and is based on FIRMS 52. alert frequency. whereas NRT alerts are sent directly from the MODIS Rapid Response (MRR) facility to avoid potential delays caused by relaying the data from the MRR to the GFIMS servers.fao. The Fire Email Alerts is the GFIMS open-source email alert service that notifies registered users of MODIS-derived active fires in a specified area of REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Distributing active fire information in vector format. DETER provides an important source of data for control and enforcement due to the data’s high temporal resolution. DETER alerts are sent to Brazil’s Institute of Environment and Natural Resources (IBAMA) and state government agencies responsible for enforcing forest legislation. PROARCO. DETER provides an online mapping interface for displaying historical and NRT data on deforestation and 53 54 http://www.6). and the general public.dpi. DETER also produces monthly/bi-monthly Amazon deforestation alerts that facilitate effective control of forest clearing (Figure 7. Spanish and English.

SAD has been operating in the State of Mato Grosso since August 2006 and in the Amazon since April is a satellite-based monitoring system operated by the Amazon Institute of People and the Environment (IMAZON). Aqua GOES and NOAA satellites for the Brazilian Amazon. filters clouds. soils. and produces a Normalized Difference Fraction Index (NDFI) image showing the relative abundance of green vegetation.imazongeo.Figure 7. the IMAZON SAD team creates a temporal mosaic of daily MODIS MOD09GQ and MOD09GA products. The abundance of data streams on active fires is valuable in that it provides a more extensive temporal coverage and the opportunity for cross-validation among different data streams. computes a resolution merge between the 500m multispectral and 250m visble bands. SAD produces monthly and annual Forest Management Transparency bulletins and maps on deforestation and degradation in the legal Amazon that can be downloaded from the IMAZON web page and from ImazonGeo (Figure 7. shade and non-photosynthetic vegetation components that are used by IMAZON to detect deforestation and degradation over REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. and is often used as a source of independent. Brazil. corroborative measurement of Amazon deforestation statistics produced by INPE’s PRODES program. statistics and reports.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 190 . ImazonGeo 56is an interactive web portal distributing spatial information on the status and threats to forests and protected areas in the Brazilian Amazon. 56 http://www. IMAZON Deforestation Alert System (SAD) and ImazonGeo The Deforestation Alert System (Sistema de Alertas de Desmatamento .7). In addition to online maps.6 Yellow dots represent the location of deforestation in an alert issued by DETER. Included in the web portal are deforestation data from SAD. These data are available for download as shapefiles from the ImazonGEO website. a national non- governmental organization (NGO) based in Belém. ImazonGeo operates in Portuguese and English. as well as 29 unique data streams of active fire data that increase the probability of acquiring cloudfree observations from the Terra. For the deforestation/degradation products. DETER and PRODES. ImazonGeo supports delivery of SAD text-based alerts via cellphone and email.

WRI’s Global Forest Watch web page. The NASA Ames/CSU team updates and distributes its global QUICC products to GloF-DAS as soon as the most recent quarterly MODIS worldwide vegetation index image is REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. and December) for all forest and woodland areas that have lost at least 40% of their green vegetation cover during the previous year. 57 http://rainforests. and several other third-party data distribution systems (Figure 7. The QUICC products are distributed through multiple sources including: the GloF-DAS web portal 57hosted by September.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 191 . June.8). GloF-DAS is based on the NASA QUICC product and provides data on forest disturbance globally to map all large-scale forest cover change (including fire impacts) on a quarterly basis.Figure 7.mongabay. QUICC MODIS deforestation products and the Global Forest Disturbance Alert System (GloF-DAS) Investigators at NASA Ames Research Center and California State University (CSU) have developed a custom 5km resolution MODIS satellite product called the "Quarterly Indicator of Cover Change" (QUICC) for all forested areas of the globe. The global QUICC change product is based on a quarterly time-series comparison of MODIS daily vegetation index images at the same time each year (March.7 ImazonGeo.

timber and oil palm plantation concessions. This application allows users to overlay NRT satellite data on active fire locations from FIRMS and fire scars mapped by CIFOR from the most recent Landsat 8 imagery on peatlands.9). These data are useful for facilitating enforcement of environmental regulations established by the Indonesian national and provincial authorities. 58 http://www. logging moratorium boundaries.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 192 .Figure 7. based in Indonesia. and raw Landsat 8 images (before and after burns) (Figure 7. and as a tool suitable for the monitoring of commodity supply chains.8 GloF-DAS CIFOR Interactive Fire Risk Tool The Center for International Forest Research (CIFOR).cifor. has created a web-based fire risk mapping application REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.

9 CIFOR Interactive Fire Risk Tool. WRI’s Global Forest Watch 2.Figure 7. mapping and data distribution portal providing access to a range of NRT.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 193 . GFW 2. historical forest change and fire products from a variety of internal and external sources (Table 7.0 The World Resources Institute’s (WRI) Global Forest Watch (GFW) was established in 1997 to develop comprehensive information about forest resources and forest management in temperate and tropical countries through publication of the GFW Forest Atlases and State of the Forest reports series. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.0 was initiated in 2011 as a comprehensive online social networking.4).

and v) a blog. The map interface displays each of the forest monitoring datasets over user-specified time periods for individual countries. The country page. carbon stocks and emissions. ii) online mapping. iii) data download. relevant forestry legislation. provides basic statistics for a user-specified country on a number of forest-related metrics.4.0 website – still in beta as of this writing – operates in seven languages and is divided into multiple pages. publishing statistics for these time periods and enabling download of the selected data in a variety of GIS formats.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 194 . for example. Forest monitoring data available through the Global Forest Watch data portal and online mapping interface The GFW 2. Data Source Frequency Resolution Geographic Extent Tree Cover Loss and Gain University Annually 30m Global of and 12-year Maryland FORMA Probable Tree Cover World Monthly 500m Humid Tropics Loss Resources Institute SAD Deforestation and IMAZON Monthly 250m Brazilian Amazon Degradation QUICC vegetation cover loss NASA Quarterly 5km Global (>40% per time period) Active Fires NASA Daily 1km Global Table 7. and relevant international conventions. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. These include: employment and income generated from the forestry sector. iv) stories. Each page covers a different theme or topic including: i) country-specific data and statistics.

globalforestwatch. discussed above. and by selected commodities (including pulpwood and palm oil).org 60 http://www. as noted in the sections on of ImazonGeo and FIRMS.and conservation-related news reports.. The data download page allows users to directly download data from – or subscribe to email alerts. NASA FIRMS.). ImazonGEO. Global Forest Watch online mapping interface displaying one of five different types of forest monitoring data (FORMA probable deforestation events). Terra-i Terra-i 60 provides online access to bi-monthly estimates of vegetation change over the entire Latin American continent. dam construction. rather they are viewable and downloadable data from the GFW interactive map. or to discuss issues related to forest conservation and management in their countries. Using an approach similar to that of FORMA.10). However. if available – the source data projects’ website (e. haze and air quality. Data from the system (2004-2014) are available for online viewing via a map 59 http://fires. etc. GFW currently represents the most data-rich website for accessing a diverse range of historical and NRT monitoring data on the state of forest resources at a global scale (Figure 7. this page also links to a Google Groups discussion forum where users can interact with GFW staff to obtain assistance and technical information. GFW recently included another component in the portal. over selected districts/ REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. This site59 focuses on the Southeast Asian region and enables the user to incorporate and analyze different data layers that facilitate the tracking of forest fires.Figure7. The stories page provides links to external forest. These variables can be analyzed for selected time periods.terra-i. some GFW data contributors do provide automatically delivered email or cellphone based alerts from their project websites. GFW alerts are not actually active notifications sent out to users.g. Terra-i produces 250m resolution “greenness anomalies” from a ten-year time series of 16-day MODIS NDVI composites. indicating where vegetation cover may have recently changed due to factors such as clear-cutting. burning and. and the blog component is used by GFW staff to publish online articles on issues such as forest monitoring and technology.10. in English and Spanish.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 195 .

Indonesia and Madagascar. 13 percent for research. and the private sector (10 percent). The survey results confirmed numerous anecdotal reports from users in Madagascar. Peru. a series of meetings conducted as part of a mid-term project evaluation for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) revealed that fire monitoring data were being used for a broad range of applications. Over 21 percent of the respondents were using the data to support forest surveillance and monitoring efforts. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. international NGOs (22 percent). as well as institutional assessments of NRT monitoring systems in Bolivia. and studying the influence of climate change on fire frequency. academic institutions and the press (20 percent).6 Utility of NRT monitoring systems In November 2011.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 196 .3. improving protected areas and plantation forest management. Respondents also indicated that NRT and seasonal fire risk forecasting information presented valuable contributions to their decision-making activities. Annual and bi-monthly statistics can also be displayed on 2004-2014 vegetation change for each of these areas of interest.11. with 73 percent of respondents reporting that the fire alerts were very useful for their work or research. trigger official enforcement responses to deforestation and degradation. In Madagascar. the survey was expanded to include in-depth interviews with users.11) and for download in a range of GIS formats by country-specific areas of interest (ecoregions. helping to build awareness. prioritizing resource management based on fire intensity and ecological vulnerability. Peru and Bolivia about how forest and fire monitoring data facilitate conservation and management objectives. protected areas. 19 percent for protected areas management. The fire data were perceived as having high intrinsic value. fire control and prevention workshops. Terra-i online map interface showing NDVI greenness anomalies from 2004-2013 7. Indonesia. and 3 percent for social and public health-related activities. In 2013. indigenous areas and political units). and enable fire control and prevention. CI conducted a subscriber survey to collect feedback from users of CI’s NRT monitoring and forecasting systems on the utility of fire and forest monitoring systems in developing-country contexts. government agencies (20 percent). 17 percent to assist with policy development related to conservation and sustainable development. Figure 7. The 118 respondants represented national NGOs (28 percent). helping inform strategy. for example.interface (Figure 7. 12 percent for education and training. These applications included active fire suppression. The survey results provided information on how different institutions incorporate NRT data into their decision-making processes.

REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. particularly outside major urban centers.7 Key Issues In addition to the technical considerations associated with NRT forest monitoring data (e. etc. email alerts) on forest threats in a timely manner. As countries incorporate NRT monitoring into NFMS. such as interactive mapping. such as FIRMS and Firecast. but these systems require the user to repeatedly access the website to obtain the latest information. User-customization Providing precise geolocation information on forest threats can prove extremely beneficial to users engaged in actively responding to illegal forest activity.) may significantly enhance the value of NRT data in the context of decision making and response. NRT monitoring and data delivery systems that tailor both the analyses and subsequent notifications of illegal forest activity to an end-users’ geographic area of interest (e.. decrease the frequency in which users receive alerts and increase in the likelihood that alerts will be given proper attention once they are received. Manual data access systems require end-users to logon to a website and search for the information in a web browser. Web-based..g. Bandwidth demands Broadband internet access in many countries continues to be limited. or – for those users operating smart phones – low-bandwidth web-based notifications and simple mapping applications. REDD+ project areas. Some NRT monitoring systems. they will need to assess the utility of NRT monitoring systems for their needs in terms of bandwidth demands. automated push-based data delivery systems versus Manual data access systems and local buy-in and ownership. No-cost. conservation areas. email alerts.g.g. The end-user explores the NRT data interactively across broad geographic areas. Many users of NRT monitoring data also spend extended periods of time in remote field locations without access to computers and where communications are limited to cell phones.7.. resulting in significant lag times between publishing the data online and Manually accessing the data – when they are able to go online.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 197 .3. the need for cloud-free imagery with minimum latency or adequate spatial resolution). An important advance in the evolution of NRT monitoring was the development of automated “push”-based data delivery systems. user- customization options. vegetation types. several other key issues need to be investigated to ensure that a monitoring system adequately addresses both the needs and potential barriers that end-users face in accessing NRT data. such as illegal logging or encroachment. Filtering out non-essential information and targeting only those areas that are relevant to a given end-user willreduce data volumes transferred (important for users who access data over low-bandwidth connections or via cell phones). may operate too slowly to be readily useful for institutions operating with low-bandwidth internet connections. subscription-based automated delivery systems further enable users to define customized alerts that target specific areas-of-interest. Furthermore. content-rich data portals with robust functionality. as described in the “User-Customization” section above. It is therefore critical that NRT data distribution systems be optimized so that users are able to access notifications (e. An alert system that automatically generates and sends an email or text notification – along with map or shapefile/KML attachments – to users without requiring them to logon to a website means the data are accessed with minum effort and delivered to the end-user with minimum latency. Manual data access systems versus automated push-based data delivery systems Manual data access systems include data search-and-download portals and interactive mapping webpages that allow query-and-display of NRT monitoring data over a map background. while the other provides access to NRT data with minimum latency and end-user effort. administrative management units. Distribution of NRT alerts to such users is best performed via text messages. Manual data access systems and automated push-based data delivery systems should be seen as complementary: one provides interactive access to multiple data streams across broad geographic areas. provide both.

local buy-in and ownership One of the most significant barriers to wide-spread adoption and use of NRT monitoring data by host- country government agencies involved in REDD+ MRV is not technical in nature.Trust. and may ignore or suppress use of such data that they do receive.3. While such systems may not contribute directly to the required reporting. or by rebranding the website and/or alert system and associated emails to host the respective government agency’s logo. greater opportunities for NRT systems that can be incorporated into alert systems exist. designers and managers of NRT monitoring systems may find it useful to explore government “ownership” of the systems. for example. and some existing systems are evolving to integrate more data streams and offer an expanding array of services. positive working relationships with the appropriate government counterparts and address their potential concerns (e. particularly if public dissemination carries legal or financial ramifications. Government agencies may prohibit official use of NRT monitoring data generated and supplied by non-official sources. Furthermore. including social networking and mobile data exchange. Further.g. As more satellite data options become available. 7. fire risk. To overcome this potential barrier and obtain official buy-in for NRT data by government agencies. and associated acquisitions become less costly. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 198 . it involves trust and ownership of data. and large-scale deforestation are being created each year. NRT systems represent a useful component to any MRV system. they provide a robust first look and increase the potential for countries and programs to improve adaptive forest management and enforcement capabilities. regarding accuracy of data). Governments often prefer to control the generation and access to information.. it is important to establish early.8 Conclusion An ever-growing number of NRT forest monitoring systems focusing on active fire. and they are are adverse to data and systems from foreign entitites beyond a country’s jurisdiction. by embedding the functionality of an interactive mapping web page streaming NRT data within a government agency website. Instead.

Justice and M. M. Abrams.2008. Final Report to NASA Earth Science Applied Sciences Program. E. Collatz. NASA. B. S. p.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 199 . E.9 References Chen.. K. Mendoza. 2013.. J. L. A. O. Ramachandran.1016/S0034-4257(03)00184-6. J. O. J. 2011.. Y. Assessing the Use of the FIRECAST Near Real-Time Monitoring System as a Tool for Decision Support. J. J. Kasibhatla. 2003. Forecasting fire season severity in South America using sea surface temperature anomalies. Justice. and Marcelo P.. L. C. O’Neal.1007/978-1-4419-6749-7_29 Musinsky. Chaves. and C. Moreira 2003. J. C. O. J. J. Pinto. P. Soliz. D. Jin. Giglio. Tabor. M. C. C. and Kaufman. Ilavajhala. In: Land Remote Sensing and Global Environmental Change. Read. Tabor. J. 2003.. New York. E. Fire Information for Resource Management System: Archiving and Distributing MODIS Active Fire Data. Clark. et al. MODIS-Derived Global Fire Products. J. 2010. IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing 47 (1):72-79. Photogrammetric Engineering & Remote Sensing 69(3): 275-282. 2013. doi:10. Small. Crosslink Newsletter. NASA Earth Science Applied Sciences Program 2010 Annual Report. G. Cano. M. Wong.1109/TGRS. A. Ermayanti. Winter 2005. S. Steininger.. E. Read.. David B. Justice. Springer. Morton. D. Eduardo M. 2011. Spatial Analyses of Logging Impacts in Amazonia Using Remotely Sensed Data. Science 334: 787-791. The Near Real Time Processing Effort. DeFries.2002076 Giglio. eds.M. Ledezma. Rasolohery..3. A satellite model of forest flammability. O. 11: 661-679. L. Venticinque.K. 2005. R. Davies. T. Giglio. C. Justice.7. Application of merged 1- m and 4-m resolution satellite data to research and management in tropical forests. M. Y. doi:10. An enhanced contextual fire detection algorithm for MODIS.K. Environmental Management 52: 136-150. Randerson. Descloitres. Marlier. 16. C. Remote Sensing of Environment 87:273-282. Y. J. Journal of Applied Ecology 40: 592-600. K.M. doi: 10. S. 2009. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.

usaid.U. Agency for International Development 1300 Pennsylvania . DC 20523 Tel: (202) 712-0000 Fax: (202) 216-3524 www. NW Washington.