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).

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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


ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS ACR American Carbon Registry AD Activity Data AFOLU Agriculture. VERSION 2. Markets and Communities Program FCPF Forest Carbon Partnership Facility REDD+ MEASUREMENT. REPORTING AND VERIFICATION (MRV) MANUAL. 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.0 v .

VERSION 2. REPORTING AND VERIFICATION (MRV) MANUAL.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. Land-use Change and Forestry GPS Global Positioning System IDEAM Colombian Institute for Hydrology.0 vi . Technology and Innovation MMU Minimum-mapping unit MRV Measurement. Reporting and Verification N20 Nitrogen oxide NAMA Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Strategies NASA National Aeronautics and Space Agency REDD+ MEASUREMENT. 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. 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.

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. plus the role of conservation. completeness. accuracy. comparability.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. sustainable forest management and enhancement of forest carbon stocks.0 vii . 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. VERSION 2.

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

or Forest Reference Emission Levels or Forest Reference Levels (FREL/FRLs). developing countries will have to demonstrate that they are reducing emissions from deforestation. industry.1 outlines the REDD+ discussion progress from COP11 – COP19. coastal and marine ecosystems” (Article 4. practices and processes that control.1. According to the decisions adopted by governments working under the aegis of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UNFCCC.1. forests and oceans as well as other terrestrial. which have postponed decisions on how to address the reduction of GHG emissions from forestry activities. 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. paragraph 1 (d)). and promote and cooperate in the conservation and enhancement of sinks and reservoirs of all GHGs not included in the Montreal Protocol. has posed a number of challenges. whereas the current reporting guidance under the UNFCCC is discussed in Chapter 6. agriculture. including transfer. Land-Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF). compared to a business-as-usual scenario. transport.” Also included in Article 4 are commitments for all countries to “promote sustainable management. forestry and waste management sectors. 7. especially in developing countries. This review provides additional context. Figure 7. 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. paragraph 1 (c) stipulates that all countries must “promote and cooperate in the development. plus the role of conservation. of technologies. however. The realization by the international community of the urgency to address REDD+ has prompted decisions that emphasize the importance of Measurement.1 Introduction This thematic review provides an overview of negotiations on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation. 7. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.1 HISTORY OF REDD+ UNDER THE UNFCCC Author: Angel Parra 7. including biomass. The complexity of the sector.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 152 . reduce or prevent anthropogenic emissions of GHGs not controlled by the Montreal Protocol in all relevant sectors.0 THEMATIC REVIEWS 7. 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. 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. As REDD+ actions should be results-based. The principle of “common but differentiated responsibilities” of the Convention (1992). Article 4.2 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. application and diffusion.

0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 153 . REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. national FRLs or sub-national RLs. ii) contribute Cancun to mitigation actions in forest sector. when Papua New Guinea and Costa Rica.19 to 15/CP. coordination of support. policy approaches and positive Montreal incentives Adoption of the Bali Action Plan (Decision 1/CP.13 Adoption of the Cancun Agreements (Decision 1/CP. modalities NFMSs. Doha based finance for REDD+. with support from eight other countries. Agreement for the consideration of reducing emissions from deforestation. safeguards are being addressed and respected. drivers of deforestation & forest degradation.1: REDD+ discussions from COP11-COP19 COP11 This dynamic changed at the 11th Meeting of the COP (COP11) in Montreal. change. countries should aim to: i) slow/halt/reverse forest cover & carbon loss. and iii) develop a national strategy/action plan. FRELs/FRLs.18 with agreement to initiate a work-programme on results- COP18: 2012.16) recognizing that developing COP16: 2010. system for providing information on safeguards. Seven decisions (Decisions COP19: 2013. modalities for MRV. 17 that includes guidance on providing information on how COP17: 2011. Canada in 2005. proposed a mechanism for reducing emissions from deforestation in developing countries. NFMS. Adoption of Decision 1/CP.19) that address: financing. technical and methodological issues.13) which includes REDD+ as one of the key elements of enhanced national/international action on mitigation of climate COP13: 2007. Bali technology transfer. 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. COP11: 2005. Figure 7. including scientific. Warsaw safeguards. demonstration activities and mobilization of resources COP15: 2009. and elaborates modalities relating to Durban FRELs\FRLs.15) including elements of Copenhagen NFMSs for implementing activities relating to Decision 2/CP. Agreement on methodological guidance (Decision 4/CP. (Decision 2/CP13) encourages actions on REDD+ including: capacity building. Adoption of Decision 12/CP. Adoption of the Warsaw Framework for REDD-plus. 9/CP.

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

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

the role of markets and non-markets and the potential use of offsets.16 (see Box 7. 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.16 The Conference of the Parties. Germany. • Results-based finance provided to developing countries that is new.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 156 . legislation and circumstances. work continued on technical guidance for MRV. Following the successful outcome of Cancun. the COP agreed.17. including public and private. • As part of the outcome of COP17 (Decision 2/CP. among other things: • Regardless of the source or type of financing. bilateral and multilateral. and • In light of the experience gained from current and future demonstration activities. the COP.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. modalities for FREL/FRLs and MRV. … 70. Box 7. additional and predictable may come from a wide variety of sources. inter alia: REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.16. (b) Reducing emissions from forest degradation. (d) Sustainable management of forests. the activities referred to in paragraph 70 of Decision 1/CP. appropriate market-based approaches could be developed by the COP to support results-based actions in developing countries. governments continued to work throughout 2011 in preparation for COP17 in Durban. including principles that should be followed when designing MRV systems. South Africa in 2011.17). (e) Enhancement of forest carbon stocks. Earlier in the year. (c) Conservation of forest carbon stocks. including the safeguards in its Appendix I (see Box 7. as deemed appropriate by each Party and in accordance with their respective capabilities and national circumstances: (a) Reducing emissions from deforestation. at the SBSTA34 meeting in Bonn. In Decision 12/CP. These discussions have continued at subsequent SBSTAs.1: 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+. Under the section on providing information on how safeguards are addressed and respected.2). Encourages developing country Parties to contribute to mitigation actions in the forest sector by undertaking the following activities. the COP noted that guidance on systems for providing safeguards information should be consistent with national sovereignty.

* (f) Actions to address the risks of reversals. and to enhance other social and environmental benefits. 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. (d) The full and effective participation of relevant stakeholders. • Decided that the summary of information referred to should be provided periodically and included in national communications. • Agreed that developing countries undertaking these activities. (e) That actions are consistent with the conservation of natural forests and biological diversity. ensuring that the actions referred to in paragraph 70 of Decision 1/CP. consistent with relevant COP decisions on non-Annex I Parties’ national communications. and the need for further guidance to the COP. taking into account national legislation and sovereignty. by taking into account relevant international obligations. in particular indigenous peoples and local communities. (b) Transparent and effective national forest governance structures. among other things: provide transparent and consistent information that is accessible by all relevant stakeholders and updated on a regular basis. in the actions referred to in paragraphs 70 and 72 of Decision 1/CP. reflected in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. • Agreed that the systems for providing information on how the safeguards are addressed and respected should.16. as appropriate. (g) Actions to reduce displacement of emissions. but are instead used to incentivize the protection and conservation of natural forests and their ecosystem services.16 are not used for the conversion of natural forests.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 157 . • 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. and noting that the United Nations General Assembly has adopted the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. (c) Respect for the knowledge and rights of indigenous peoples and members of local communities. as well as the International Mother Earth Day. and build upon existing systems. as appropriate. national circumstances and laws. When undertaking the activities referred to in paragraph 70 of Decision 1/CP.16) 2.2: Safeguards for REDD+ activities (paragraph 2 of Appendix I to Decision 1/CP.16. should provide a summary of information on how safeguards are being addressed and respected throughout implementation. Box 7. or communication channels agreed by the COP. be country-driven and implemented at the country level. 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. *Taking into account the need for sustainable livelihoods of indigenous peoples and local communities and their interdependence on forests in most countries.

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

19: Modalities for measuring.19: The timing and the frequency of presentations of the summary of information on how all the safeguards referred to in decision 1/CP. are being addressed and respected • Decision 13/CP. including institutional arrangements • Decision 11/CP. appendix I.16.16.19: Addressing the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.19: Work programme on results-based finance to progress the full implementation of the activities 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.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.• Decision 9/CP.19: Modalities for national forest monitoring systems • Decision 12/CP. paragraph 70 • Decision 10/CP.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 159 .

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. The COP in this decision. could also be provided. and to share information • Further encourages developing country Parties to take note of the information shared REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.19: The timing and the frequency of presentations of the summary of information on how all the safeguards referred to in decision 1/CP. appendix I. and forest carbon stock and forest-area changes is to be consistent with the methodological guidance provided in decision 4/CP. inter alia: • Reaffirms that results-based finance may come from a wide variety of sources. inter alia: • Agrees that the summary of information on how all of the safeguards referred to in decision 1/CP. inter alia: • Decides that measuring. public and private. Warsaw Framework for REDD-plus decisions adopted at COP19 (November 2013) Box 7.19: Modalities for measuring. appendix I. 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. a number of needs and functions were identified • Encourages national entities/focal points. on a voluntary basis. to discuss the needs and functions identified to address issues relating to coordination of support. forest carbon stocks. and build upon existing systems while being flexible and allowing for improvement Decision 12: CP.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. paragraph 70. to channel adequate and predictable results-based finance in a fair and balanced manner. consistent over time.19: Modalities for national forest monitoring systems. inter alia: • Encourages Parties. 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. at the latest. reporting and verifying anthropogenic forest-related emissions by sources and removals by sinks. Parties and relevant entities financing REDD-plus to meet. The COP in this decision.16. suitable for MRV. bilateral and multilateral. paragraph 70 Decision 10/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. on a voluntary basis. including alternative sources • Encourages financing entities. on coordination of support. including the Green Climate Fund in a key role. are being addressed and respected. and any guidance on the measurement. The COP in this decision. 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. as adopted or encouraged by the COP • Also decides that national forest monitoring systems should provide data and information that are transparent. with the first meeting to be held in conjunction with SBI 41 (December 2014) • Requests the Subsidiary Body for Implementation. reporting and verifying. The COP in this decision.16.19: Guidelines and procedures for the technical assessment of submissions from Parties on proposed forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels. The COP in this decision.19: Coordination of support for the implementation of activities in relation to mitigation actions in the forest sector by developing countries. via the REDD Web Platform Decision 13: 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.16.15. as contained in the annex to this decision Decision 14: CP.16. 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.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 160 . 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. paragraph 70. organizations and the private sector to take action to reduce the drivers • Also encourages to continue work to address drivers. 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.16. at its forty-seventh session (November-December 2017) to review the outcomes of these meetings Decision 11/CP. including institutional arrangements.16. 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. 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. The COP in this decision. on a voluntary basis.19: Addressing the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation The COP in this decision. are being addressed and respected throughout the implementation of the activities referred to in decision 1/CP.

0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 161 . 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. 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. and the Mitigation of Climate Change (WG3). Other ad-hoc task groups and steering groups may be established to consider specific topics or questions.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). the Framework more clearly addressed several NFMS activities. Two major pending issues that will be discussed at COP20 to be held in Lima. The NGGIP also established and maintains the IPCC Emission Factor Database (EFDB) discussed in Chapter 3. Figure 7. Further. the IPCC reviews and assesses the most recent scientific. To do this.2: IPCC structure and functions (source: IPCC TFI) REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. In addition to the three WGs. the Climate Change Impacts. Adaptation and Vulnerability (WG2).The Warsaw Framework for REDD-plus represented another milestone for REDD as it identified options for financing and highlighted support coordination. It does not conduct any research nor does it monitor climate related data or parameters. and to encourage its use by countries participating in the IPCC and by the Parties to the UNFCCC. technical and socio-economic research produced worldwide.1. provided guidance on safeguards. 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.2. To accomplish its work. 7. A schematic on the structure of the IPCC is shown in Figure 7. the IPCC has established the Task Force on National GHG Inventories to oversee the IPCC National GHG Inventories Program (NGGIP). and addressed drivers of deforestation and forest degradation. the IPCC is organized into three working groups (WGs) responsible for assessing: the Physical Science Basis (WG1).

and Waste. Specifically: • In November 1994. the IPCC developed the Good Practice Guidance and Uncertainty Management in National GHG Inventories (GPG 2000). perfluorinated hydrocarbons. Forestry and Other Land Use (AFOLU) Volume. LULUCF. improvements of the methods and advice on cross-cutting issues. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. These two documents do not replace. • The 2006 IPCC Guidelines on National GHG Inventories are an evolutionary development starting from the Revised 1996 Guidelines.1. sulphur hexafluoride. methodologies were included for the estimation of halofluorocarbons. the GPG 2000. ozone and aerosol precursors. • The Revised 1996 IPCC Guidelines for National GHG Inventories include revised methodologies and default data for six main sectors: Energy. and the GPG-LULUCF in 2000 and 2003.4 History of IPCC methodological guidelines and guidance Since its inception in the early 1990s. and direct GHGs (CO2. have become the cornerstone for all work on GHG inventories. and the GPG-LULUCF. which consolidates the approach to LULUCF in the GPG-LULUCF and the Agriculture sector in GPG2000 into a single Agriculture. • In response to requests by the UNFCCC. including estimation of uncertainties. Agriculture. the IPCC has played a key role in the development of methodological guidelines and guidance that. time series consistency and quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC). Solvents and Other Product Use.7. This was the first internationally accepted methodology that became the basis for the development of national GHG inventories under the UNFCCC. respectively. The most significant changes occur in Volume 4. nitrogen dioxide [N2O]). which addressed all sectors mentioned above except for land-use change and forestry. but supplement the information in the Revised 1996 Guidelines and provide good practice guidance on choice of estimation methodology.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 162 . the IPCC approved the first version of the IPCC Guidelines for National GHG Inventories. Industrial Processes. over the years. In addition. methane [CH4].

accounting of emission reductions and distribution of emissions-reduction credits. However.17) Each developing country Party aiming to undertake the actions listed in decision 1/CP. (b) Transparent. if appropriate. Box 7. in a comprehensive and transparent way. methodologies and procedures used in the construction of a forest reference emission level and/or forest reference level. The LULUCF sector has evolved significantly between the Revised 1996 Guidelines and the 2006 IPCC Guidelines (see Figure 3. 2013. site-level activities are being developed within jurisdictions that are also developing their own broader REDD+ strategies. paragraph 70. advances have been made at the sub-national level in the context of voluntary carbon markets and bilateral agreements. approaches. 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.1.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 163 . as adopted or encouraged by the COP. there has been some progress at the sub-national jurisdiction level. including historical data. complete. including methodological information. Two groups providing guidance are the Voluntary Carbon Standards group (VCS) and the American Carbon Registry (ACR) (ACR. and descriptions of changes from previously submitted information. noting that significant pools and/or activities should not be excluded. an explanation of why and how the definition used in the construction of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels was chosen. should include in its submission information that is transparent. and include: (a) Information that was used by Parties in constructing a forest reference emission level and/or forest reference level.1 in Chapter 3). The information provided should be guided by the most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change guidance and guidelines. a description of data sets. (d) The definition of forest used in the construction of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels and. 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. Both have provided technical methodologies recommended REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. 2013). These changes are a result of better understanding of the sector and the availability of more scientific research.16. consistent and accurate information.5 Other non-UN processes In addition to countries preparing for national implementation of REDD+.16. descriptions of relevant policies and plans. including. Sub-national implementation has mostly been at the site level. as appropriate. models.4: Guidelines for submissions of information on reference levels(Annex to decision 12/CP. used at the time of construction of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels. (c) Pools and gases. complete(1). 7. 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. methods. VCS. inter alia. This requires the development of a “nested” approach to REDD+ strategies. as appropriate. In some cases. if applicable and assumptions used. and activities listed in decision 1/CP. (1) Complete here means the provision of information that allows for the reconstruction of forest reference emission levels and/or forest reference levels. paragraph 70. These sub-national REDD+ efforts look to separate groups to provide guidance on setting RLs and aspects of MRV.

sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries http://unfccc. monitoring requirements) in which the project takes place. district. GOFC-GOLD Report version COP17-1. and the role of conservation.for sub-national REDD+ RLs and MRV. 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. for example in carbon-stock assessments and fundamental concerns such as transparency and replicability.). 2011.16: Outcome of the work of the Ad Hoc Working Group on long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention .int/files/meetings/cop_16/application/pdf/cop16_lca. within the guidance of both the VCS and the ACR. Forestry and other Land Use Institute for Global Environmental Strategies. Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories . 2013. IPCC. 2008. deforestation rates and GHG reductions through REDD+ project activities. http://v-c-s. leakage assessment. These efforts have also helped provide guidance on how to approach issues particular to jurisdictional and nested REDD+.6 References ACR. Good Practice Guidance for Land Use. A nested REDD+ project is one that is accounted and monitored in reference to the jurisdictional accounting framework (baseline. GOFC-GOLD.1 . 7. etc. Blaser. For example. allowing them to use the baseline and other requirements developed by the jurisdiction. Addendum Part Two: Action taken by the Conference of the Parties at its thirteenth session. Japan. and J.Report of the Conference of the Parties on its thirteenth session.1. p11 FCCC/CP. A sourcebook of methods and procedures for monitoring and reporting anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and removals caused by deforestation. while also helping to attract private capital for REDD+.pdf IPCC. C. Policy approaches and positive incentives on issues relating to reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries. gains and losses of carbon stocks in forests remaining forests. A jurisdiction may be a national or sub-national political entity (nation. Alberta. Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories Institute for Global Environmental Land-Use Change and Forestry Institute for Global Environmental Strategies. land-use change and forestry (LULUCF) with an emphasis on developing country FCCC/CP/2009/11/Add. Canada).Volume 4 -Agriculture. 2003. http://americancarbonregistry. a jurisdiction is any politically defined region delineated for the purposes of tracking carbon stocks. Robledo. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Voluntary Carbon Standards American Carbon Registry standards and verification. 2013. IPCC. VCS. FCCC/CP/2007/6/Add. Natural Resources Canada. rather than having to develop these at the project level. (GOFC-GOLD Project Office.UNFCCC Decision 4/CP. An Environment & Energy Group Publication.1. and forestation. This can have the benefit of reducing transaction costs for projects.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 164 . province. Key issues on land use. UNDP. though other ways of defining jurisdictional boundaries are also possible. Japan. 2003. 2006.15: Methodological guidance for activities relating to reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation and the role of conservation. held in Bali from 3 to 15 December 2007. They tend to defer to the IPCC. state. Japan.

We examine relevant literature and case studies of community-based monitoring of biodiversity. will require monitoring of non-carbon elements such as social safeguards (UNFCCC. 2011). These may include land tenure conflicts. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. and ‘safeguards’ for biodiversity conservation and livelihood support (Danielsen and Theilade. Community-based monitoring can be incorporated into these monitoring systems. Community-based monitoring has been used to examine a number of forest elements including biodiversity. 7. in order to identify common challenges and lessons for REDD+. 2011). as well as many other domestic policy initiatives. a community member is defined as a resident in or near an area of interest. province.2 Community-based monitoring in the context of REDD+ As discussed in earlier chapters.. this study recognizes that community-based monitoring can be initiated by community members to evaluate community initiatives such as forest management. either through their participation in collaborative monitoring efforts.1.2 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. or country. 7. “Community-based monitoring implies the direct involvement of community members in monitoring. illegal extraction rates and timber and non-timber products (Effah et al. while acknowledging other areas in which community members can contribute valuable information. the mechanisms by which communities will be involved in forest monitoring have not received much attention in the UNFCCC context. and will depend on a variety of factors including: forest tenure and resource use by the community. water quality. drivers of deforestation and forest degradation and policy and institutional frameworks. or by training and contracting community members to carry out monitoring projects. and the role of Indigenous Peoples and local communities is explicitly referred to in the UNFCCC Cancun Agreement (UNFCCC. and mechanisms to ensure participation. carbon stocks. 2010). benefit sharing.1 Definition of community-based monitoring According to Fernandez-Gimenez et al.” In this review. 2010). and differentiates community members from external consultants who live in another city. The potential roles that community-based monitoring can contribute to a national REDD+ monitoring system are outlined in Table 7. forest carbon stocks.2. Additionally it is broadly recognized that REDD+.2. cultural and religious points of interest. Additionally.7. This review focuses principally on how communities can participate in the collection of biophysical data. and forest biomass. or by external entities to evaluate larger landscape or regional-scale projects.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 165 . respect for human rights. However. (2008). the range of MRV systems and forest monitoring systems that are being developed for REDD+ will likely require monitoring of forest changes.

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. 2013). and facilitate the collection of information on difficult-to-observe metrics. and provide independent verification information Monitoring Analyze historical data if available Collect regular ground-based degradation. 2007.. time.. 2010) to develop emission factors and collect information on social and cultural indicators. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. stocks.2.3 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. with field crews Calibrate or validate maps. 2011) 7. DeFries et al. 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. the ground in near real-time and derived maps. 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. Component of Monitoring Options at the Potential Contribution of Monitoring System National Level Community. provide benefits such as training and salaries. GOFC-GOLD. 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. and approaches that involve local people can reduce costs. Reliability The use of international teams of specialized personnel in the collection of ground-based data represents an expensive process. 2005.. 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.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 166 . increase frequency of monitoring. measurements of forest carbon enhancement of forest Conduct surveys on fuelwood and non.1: Potential role for community-based monitoring in national monitoring systems (adapted from Pratihast and Herold. Remote sensing-based methods will need to be supplemented with a range of local-level monitoring for calibration and validation (Schelhas et al.

As a result.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 167 . identifying ways to reduce costs is vital (Skutsch et al. community members are often knowledgeable regarding drivers of local forest changes (Van Laake.. 2011). This may be the result of the participating community members having expert knowledge of their own environment and resources. A study by Larrazábal et al. 2010. 2011). relative to the transaction costs of setting up a community monitoring system (Danielsen et al. Topp-Jørgensen et al.. 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. therefore. at intervals appropriate for the forest type and management regime.. However. 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. One study suggests that a minimum size of 100 hectares is required to break even.. and training. 2011). 2011). These metrics include socio-economic information (e. 2011).. (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). REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.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. 2011). However. 2010).g. 2010). Cost Effectiveness Forest monitoring is one of the largest costs associated with REDD+ in developing countries and. setting up permanent sample plots. Frequency Forest monitoring for REDD+ will require periodic collection of information.. Therefore. including the frequency and scale of monitoring and the opportunity costs for monitors. 2011). 2011). 2005. More frequent monitoring of forest conditions and changes can improve the statistical and scientific reliability of the resulting data. 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. once the community members have been trained in the required methods (Van Laake. These costs include purchasing of equipment.. 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. many of the costs associated with community monitoring occur in the initial stages of the project or initiative (Effah et al. 2011). but generally less sophisticated data collection expertise (Skutsch and McCall. 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... Importantly. Danielsen et al. 2011).. such as a national forest service entity or visiting technical consultants (Rist et al.. 2011). because these costs are constant and independent of the size or timeframe of the project. costs of community-based monitoring are much lower compared to the costs associated with travel and salaries for external consultants (Rist et al. 2006). 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. Additionally. the monitoring costs depend on many factors. 2011). particularly in forests undergoing rapid change (Danielsen et al. community monitoring is most cost effective for larger areas and projects that aim to monitor over at least several years (Effah et al. Results from 30 projects in 7 countries demonstrate that there is no significant difference in the accuracy between these two groups. Other studies estimate that in the long run.

access to resources. includes professional fees. improved social and environmental safeguards. travel and High initial set-up and training costs followed by accommodation costs relatively lower salary. In addition. local authorities. The cases are also summarized in Table 7.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 168 . local guides and translators usually Good. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. governance (e.2. monitoring by locals creates ownership. food production). time culture. the common challenges and lessons for scaling up to the national level are discussed. assumes that professional teams need little High. laws and species Data Quality Good Good. either for REDD+. it is very costly for external experts High. 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. Provision of benefits to communities Involving local community members in forest monitoring can lead to additional benefits such as transparency. or at least continue monitoring over the lifespan of the the same coordination. 2011). train and equip preparation teams Collection of Generally poor. built-in knowledge of local economy and other data local socio-economy and culture. easy to collect information and monitor consuming to collect the data changes Table 7.3. takes more time to identify. adapted from Larrazábal et al. . can be maintained project. biomass energy use. even if sampling is done part-time. increased ownership of mitigation actions. travel and accommodation costs over time Local Usually poor.4 Lessons from case studies This section presents a synthesis of cases in which communities have been involved in forest monitoring. Table 7.. mechanisms for participation in decision making).g. dependent on appropriate training and data verification Consistency Potentially low if the same consultants cannot Potentially high if the same team members. and offers opportunities to improve management Management Expected to be good Potential areas of concern in many communities Initial training Low. or the same methods are not adhered to Frequency Usually low. logistics.g. Monitoring External Consultants Local Community Members Component Costs High..2: Advantages and disadvantages of community-based and expert-based monitoring (from Knowles et al. 2010.2 discusses the comparative advantage of local communities in forest monitoring projects. Thus. residents typically know the area well in terms Knowledge needed of access. adds to benefits the capacity of local residents. strengthened capacity of local institutions. and employment opportunities (Danielson et al. benefit sharing processes. substantial and Intensity to spend long periods in the field. usually limited to technical input High.. cultural relevance of monitoring approaches. participation of community members can lead to the long-term sustainability of interventions and of monitoring initiatives. species observations. and biodiversity (e. 2011) 7. habitat changes). very challenging to understand Good. . or for other metrics that might be relevant to a REDD+ program.

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

Data is frequently sent “upward” to be analyzed and used for management. 2003). Data management and aggregation systems For data from local monitoring systems to be useful at larger geographic scales. in the Scolel Tѐ project in Mexico. 2011). By including a cross section of the community. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. 2008). If inconsistencies or inaccuracies are identified. McCall (2011) argues that these technologies put local knowledge ‘on par’ with knowledge from outside experts. the respective knowledge and strengths of each participant are shared amongst the group. roles and relationships between communities and the broader social. developing clear processes for engaging al. 2012). provided countries assess the rights. 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. a quality control system should be put in place to assess the accuracy of data collected by local community members. and elders and hunters have more experience with species identification and in-depth historical knowledge (Cerda. 2011). This indicates that existing payment structures may not be sufficient to support community-based monitoring in the long-term. Depending on the circumstances of the study area. (2011) found that many projects demonstrate successful aggregation of data across sub-national jurisdictions into a central database.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 170 .. and the provision of capacity building on. designing information sharing systems that integrate with REDD+ (social and environmental) safeguards processes. community-based monitoring activities.. Further.5 Conclusion Community-based monitoring has several potential roles in the future of REDD+. For example. allow communities to assess tradeoffs between alternative forest uses and enable the evaluation of management impacts on forest resources. skill development of participants. but the results of this analysis and its broader implications are not communicated clearly to communities (Ojha and Bhattarai. data must be retained by community members so they can use it in their own decision-making processes (Stuart-Hill et al. reduced data loss. For example. Additionally. 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. Providing feedback knowledge will contribute to planning. The Sofala Community Carbon Project in Mozambique. 2010). 2005). capture of media such as photos or audio. different approaches regarding the use of advanced technologies can be used. 2011). and easy data sharing (Parmer Fry. younger participants learned to use the systems more readily. data management systems should be designed to ensure that data collected by local community members is securely managed. Benefits of using these systems include increased accuracy. 10 percent of community-based monitoring is verified by project technical staff. Effah et al. systematic data collection. Forest guards are comfortable with the technology. simplification of validation. for example. the SocioBosque program in Ecuador addresses the issue of exposure to GPS-enabled cell phones by grouping forest guards. 7. hunters. and periodic quality assessment of. 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. Quality assessment and control In order to incorporate forest monitoring into a national GHG inventory and reporting system. additional training is provided (Scolel Tѐ. and environmental context of communities and forests. Several considerations in designing community-based components of REDD+ monitoring include: consulting with communities on the purpose of monitoring for REDD+. cultural.2. a database system is needed that enables local data to be uploaded and shared (Pratihast and Herold. 2012).

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

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Information Requirements for National REDD+ Programmes. F. M. 2008. Chapter 6 in Skutsch. R. B. 2011.16. Tease. Data collection and national/local level. Draft decision–/CP. M. Outcome of the work of the ad hoc working group on long‐term cooperative action under the Convention.. Diggle. and M. Earthscan REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. ed.E. 2011. The Policy Context of Community Monitoring for REDD+.. Biodiversity and Conservation 14: 2653-2677. Tagg and D. C. Johnson. B. B. U. London. Skutsch. Topp-Jørgensen. and Ecology and Society 15(1): 3. Chapter 5 in Skutsch. M. How Much Carbon Does Community Forest Management Save? Chapter 2 in Skutsch. Skutsch. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD.. UK.J. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD. Report version COP14-2. M. 2011.F. M. P. 2005. E. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD.K. 2011. L. UK. 2009. P.. Van Laake. Blay. Ward. Karky and F. Skutsch and M.. M. M. M. Stanturf and D. McCall. 2009. Massao. and E. J.S. Italy. Opportunities and capacity for community-based forest carbon sequestration and monitoring in Ghana. FAO. London. Shaanker. Nature & Faune 25(1): 35-39. Canada. 2010. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD. ed. M.. Earthscan. E.4 in GOFC-GOLD: Reducing GHG emissions from deforestation and degradation in developing countries: a sourcebook of methods and procedures for monitoring. K. J. Uk. UK. Alberta. Earthscan. London. Zahabu and G. Ghazoul. Available at: http://unfccc. McCall. Lund and J. G. Milner-Gulland and J. AMBIO. Trines. Skutsch.. Skutsch.. UK. Schelhas. 2010. Samar... ed. J. 2005. London. Asumadu. E. Chapter 3. E. K. Stuart-Hill. London. M. Scolel-Te. M. The use of traditional ecological knowledge in forest management: An example from india. measuring and reporting..K. Munali.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 173 . 2010. Earthscan. R. ed. M.. Earthscan. UNFCCC.F. Community-based monitoring of natural resource use and forest quality in montane forests and miombo woodlands of Tanzania. The Costs and Reliability of Forest Carbon Monitoring by Communities. Skutsch. Why Community Forest Monitoring? Chapter 1 in Skutsch. Poulsen. The Event Book System: a community- based natural resource monitoring system from Namibia.Rist. Forest Resources Assessment Working Paper 156. McCall. M. Scolel Te Operational Manual: Natural Resources Management and Carbon Sequestration. Zahabu. Chapter 4 in Skutsch.pdf Van Laake. 2011. J. S. Rome. Biodiversity and Conservation 14: 2611–2631. Danielsen. Case Studies on Measuring and Assessing Forest Degradation: Community Measurement of Carbon Stock Change for REDD. Peters-Guarin. Solis. Karky. ed. Community Forest Monitoring for the Carbon Market: Opportunities under REDD.

disturbance.12/ha/yr. records records are management of meetings kept decisions based and trainings publically on this available at information the village REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. costs with full day Reserve. method and knowledge counterparts.. Table 7. 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. Bitterlich follow-up $6. from each flora paper. the District include were portion of this went monitoring and information government recognition of reported to setting up the data analysis.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 174 . the participation between $0. 2005 District.04 . and some approximately for monitoring training and Tanzania basal area. Village Natural Locally Not specified Guidance in Monitors paid Village Monitoring Estimated $3 Village Natural et al. records Assistance water quality higher were able to of user Program and increased administrative rapidly turn permits and prestige. stumps) committee. breast height.not Committees indicator provided by incentives Committees decisions specified which managed species. similar to by burns. Resource developed developing ~ $1/day. and all around quick fees. environment Bitterlich gauge conferred $0. levels.25 per day. forest disturbance supervision disturbance members of the 20-tress gauge. pen and full day training received authors aggregation been done. Natural data and local million for the Resource Tanzania abundance of Committees protocols system Other Resource management entire project. on resource and the Danish the value for monthly to monitoring system and as a result use.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. 'expert' cuts. ropes supervision additionally are estimated to be collected data (determined village methods. village (two disturbance.

staff. field over a period paid to park are involved for the staff areas. Conservation interviews. 2005 wetlands. designated host NGOs. GPS. site subsequent have been through kept by local collected.. development protected being scaled those Kitanglad. photo camera. Teams catch compass. by outside directly areas at the engage local types. frequency of park including developed.. change methods were tape measure experts were makes time of communities in perceived developed made for management writing. A Involvement of Manual for park staff each field throughout the method and development indicator was and testing of prepared. bird upfront and less than presented to orally to the ($0. maps. of 10 villagers observations.for (from regional and management years. Three Change in Between 24 . No attractive community authorities. involved in the head of the areas was different from Bataan. harvest through assistance and decisions volume in national supervision based on this biodiversity collaborative result impacting process and activities field testing. lemur further detail because the meetings and fires were forest services. The protected monitoring are Sierra Madre.may public data sheets information rates technicians observation scales. methods were content of conferred the course of and used across the training special status the project. guide. species and local forest transect walk. of three years. Multiple Notebook. paint. documentation. demonstrated fish catches. example marsh water and identification. guards and focus group GPS. and protected (in order to of vegetation members Standards and sheets. are trained $2/day. amount in compiling monitoring responsible for Northern sightings of the park field diary. compass. then employed income from the general public and response to and hunting and 7 and species weighing again in fishing. plans. methodologies is key to buy in and long term capacity Andrianandrasana Alaotra Data on Organized by Data collected Canoe. Stakeholders not specified the data. and analyzes priority enforcement change in size community discussions. Standard field guide on the type of employment on the radio reduced over fishery service. field guide. development 16 sites provided as a technical NGOs) expert REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 175 . string. binoculars. Durrell Wildlife via transects.000/yr. methodologies. Trust. altimeter. Capacity built Salaries were All park staff The system Not specified Important that 2000 protected number and 36 staff per methods pen. participants earned ~ information data approximately authorities Madagascar waterbirds. effectively). Monitoring Participants The Monitoring All costs Local et al.21/ha/yr. film. listed superintendent.Danielsen et al. lemurs. watch.) adaptive march areas. M. binoculars. and testing of area gathers to other responsible for Philippines resource use. data Regular visits the data. This is was presented $5.

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

supplies Park. organized and hunting spring scales.Noss et al. Bolivia effort rates.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 177 .000 per year National catch per unit Society with them on measures. after 6 summarize number of costs weight and project in record record months the data every 6.015/ha/yr. participating with Park Community locations 7-10 Community to the total administration.) age collaboration information. initially monitors use data to $50. hunters ($0. supported the excursions to GPS used to basis. Conservation data sheets pens. details not participated analyze data extrapolate for salaries.. Training is Hunters Community Study authors Approximately Gran Chaco abundance. tape provided. 2005 Kaa-Iya del Species Wildlife Hunters carry Data sheets. specified on volunteer monthly and from the and transportation catch size. 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. hunting program hired 12 months.

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

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

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

or contribute to NRT monitoring via analysis or confirmation. NRT alerts facilitate distribution of information in a streamlined user-customized form that can help overcome communication bottlenecks. There is also much potential for linking NRT monitoring with community-based monitoring and community-based management. 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. This section summarizes the characteristics of NRT monitoring. providing a platform for NRT surveillance of forest resources. bringing new opportunities for employing multiple streams of NRT forest monitoring data for decision support and use in Measurement. NRT forest monitoring can strengthen enforcement and governance at local levels. and potentially other phenomena “in-action”. By enabling a rapid response to deforestation. and many countries are considering including NRT monitoring in the development of their National Forest Monitoring Systems (NFMS). NRT forest monitoring complements the periodic (annual or decadal) remote sensing-based analysis of forest extent and change conducted as part of MRV. 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. degradation. instead. and describes some of the more advanced satellite-based NRT applications and case studies. Frequent NRT alerts that track and facilitate active reporting on patterns of new deforestation. facilitate effective forest management while ensuring local customs and rights are respected. 7. thus ensuring as much forest carbon is protected as possible. and more rapid adjustment of REDD+ strategies to changing circumstances. encroachment. though there are significant benefits that can come from the application of NRT as part of MRV. intervening and reducing the impacts of detected threats.3.3. wildfire. A range of publically available satellite image resources exist that can be adapted to NRT analysis and reporting. It provides an effective project implementation and adaptive management tool for responding to immediate forest threats. Satellite and mobile technologies are also continually evolving.7. NRT monitoring is not a requirement for national greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting or inclusion in a national MRV system. thus strengthening public pressure for improved governance and reform. NRT monitoring need not be part of the data analysis that produces quantitative estimates of forest cover and GHG emissions.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. Reporting and Verification (MRV) systems. it represents an additional monitoring component that enables more efficient enforcement and governance. where local communities either receive NRT information.3 NEAR-REAL TIME MONITORING AND ALERT SYSTEMS Author: John Musinsky 7. be monitored and thwarted. NRT forest monitoring can provide multiple. fire and logging throughout the year help institutions design management plans REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. indirect benefits due to its rapid-response nature. in fact. Many countries could benefit from the possibilities presented by NRT monitoring within their national forest management and monitoring strategies. Such monitoring increases transparency and may deter future activities that contribute to forest loss or degradation. 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. combined with community-based monitoring.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 181 . NRT forest monitoring and the distribution of alerts.

This is particularly true for instruments such as Landsat. of which the latter two carry the MODIS instrument as a payload. 7. NRT monitoring data may be validated using independent. sufficient geographical precision to enable ground- based personnel to navigate to the location where the disturbance occurred. with higher spatial resolutions. ii) the individual image footprints from optical instruments are generally larger and have a shorter re-visit time. FY‐4) with 1km visible and near-infrared bands may be more suitable for uninterrupted NRT monitoring of moderate-scale forest activity. And.. GOES‐R.3. As part of this process. Both RADAR and LiDAR data have unique attributes that may make them useful for NRT monitoring in certain circumstances..g. Terra and Aqua. planet-wide imagery. the lack of frequent acquisition or comprehensive spatial coverage of LiDAR data.a major advantage in perennially cloud-covered areas -. resulting in regular and more frequent image availability. ii) data with adequate spatial resolution to enable the direct detection of a forest disturbance activity in progress (e. fire). However.3.4 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. Geostationary satellite data are nevertheless useful for NRT detection of fires due to the thermal sensitivities of the detectors. iii) the image archives are spatially and temporally more complete.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 182 .that accommodate the intra. which can be useful when monitoring subtle changes due to forest degradation. to maintain their geosynchronous orbits. and the high cost of both RADAR and LiDAR mean these are currently not practical as NRT data sources. highlighting risks associated with supply chains of commercial crops such as palm oil. the technical challenges inherent in processing and interpreting RADAR data. 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. these include a RADAR instrument’s ability to see through clouds -.g. yielding coarse pixel resolution that limits their utility for monitoring small-scale forest disturbance like slash-and-burn deforestation or degradation. Finally.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. field-based information to determine its accuracy. and iv) when monitoring represents part of a field-based response or enforcement. and future geostationary satellites (e. and 4) optical data are generally cheaper. CBERS. or the indirect detection of disturbance post-activity in terms of altered physical forest structure or biomass lost. providing uninterrupted observations of the ground). etc. 7. 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.and inter-annual variability in spatial and temporal patterns of fire and associated deforestation and illegal logging activity.and the forest structure information provided by both RADAR and LiDAR instruments. However. CBERS. NRT forest monitoring helps address issues of sustainable commodity value chains by providing timely information. while polar-orbiting satellites (orbiting at an altitude of less than 1000km) provide a cost- effective approach to gathering comprehensive. one disadvantage of polar-orbiting satellites for NRT monitoring is the resultant temporal gaps in the data record.. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Most satellite imagery used for forest monitoring in the tropics is acquired by sensors onboard polar-orbiting satellites such as Landsat. iii) minimal lag time between the disturbance and resultant detection to enable effective action. Each condition is discussed in detail below. most geostationary satellites are located at an altitude of around 35.000km. but lower temporal resolutions.

multiple pixels of optical data are required to effectively delineate features on the ground.. (2003) used visual interpretation of 1m panchromatic and 4m multispectral IKONOS data. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. For example. Latency To effectively contribute to field-based responses to undesirable or illegal forest activity. SPOT-5 (5-10m). To compensate for excessive cloud contamination or temporal gaps in the data records of high- resolution satellite data. 30m. for example.50 hectares. alternative data acquisition and processing strategies may be used. CBERS or SPOT) over the same geographical areas and time frames. 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.e. Thermal channels on many earth-observing satellite platforms are designed to accurately detect the large quantities of thermal radiation (heat) emitted from ground-fires. co- analysis may be performed using multiple data sources (such as Landsat with ASTER. 2005). If. 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. a time lag often exists between the actual forest activity and the moment the satellite observes the disturbance. 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. These activities included road openings and treefall gaps. including the deployment of environmental law enforcement officials or the coordination of community-based monitoring personnel. For example. Finally. Latency refers to the delay between satellite observation and product delivery to users. SPOT-6 (1. interpreted.75 hectares and larger. 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. For example.5m). Landsat 8 images are available for download within 12 hours of acquisition. Landsat images can be used to classify patches of deforestation 0.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 183 . 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. lower-resolution data. older disturbance.5-6m). in Amazonas. In addition to the satellite data latency.4m) or GeoEye-1 (0. Generally. recently acquired higher resolution data are co- analyzed with older. The relationship between pixel size and an observed phenomenon is somewhat different for the detection of active fires.7- 2. i. 2003). IKONOS (1-4m). However.25-0. in fact. The sum of all these sources of delay is the functional latency of the NRT monitoring system. as well as merged products based on these data. on the order of two to three hours for MODIS data (O’Neal. very small-scale activities require high-resolution satellite data such as RapidEye (6..5-1.“false-positive” detections may result from what appears to be new activity that is.65m). a lag exists during the image analysis phase and in distribution of data to end-users. and reported with minimal time delay. or considerably longer when the analysis is performed Manually (either through computer-assisted classifications or Manual digitizing). This lag time may be very short when employing automated analytical processing systems. 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. Medium-scale imagery. native resolution. These thermal bands have pixels that cover much larger areas than the fires they are able to detect. Brazil. the satellite data used to detect forest activities must be acquired. while Landsat 7 processing averages 1-3 days between image acquisition and distribution. Read (2003) and Read et al.Cloud-free data Cloud contamination represents one of the biggest challenges in using optical satellite imagery for NRT forest monitoring. to identify activities associated with Reduced Impact Logging (RIL). the lag time may be substantially longer if cloud cover exists and additional satellite image acquisitions are required before cloud-free data are available. Quickbird (0. ASTER scenes are only available to the user 7-10 days after acquisition.

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

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

temperature and humidity. 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). days since last rainfall and the commonly used Keetch-Byram Drought Index. 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. daily rainfall sum.Figure 7. The model outputs are currently used by REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. based on decades of field experiments by the US Forest Service that quantitatively describe the relationship between fuel moisture and flammability risk..e. The model is based on the relationship between moisture content and flammability of fuels on the forest floor (i. The model assumes that fuel is ignitable at moisture contents of 20 percent or less. 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 runs nightly and pulls MODIS and TRMM data to generate maps of fire risk.3. The Fire Risk System is an online application using satellite bioclimatology to model forest flammability (Steininger et al. litter and woody debris). 2013).0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 186 . 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. and fuel moisture fluctuates with rainfall events.4).

org/ REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. 49 From Steininger et al. Areas from yellow to red indicate moisture values of 20 percent or less. a useful indicator of fire risk. Reports from counterparts in the field confirmed that the combination of both fire alert and encroachment alert systems catalyzed and guided numerous enforcement campaigns. 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.. The fire risk model has been geographically expanded and enhanced in NASA’s NEX. A fire season forecast component developed by researchers at the University of California. Spatial patterns of daily moisture content for coarse fuels. has also been included in the system (Chen et al. based on the previous suite of NRT monitoring systems.conservation.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 187 . A new integrated forest and fire monitoring and forecasting system for improved forest management in the tropics. Example of forest flammability model outputs used in an alert system.1) complemented the fire alerts. is now under collaborative development by CI. and the Bolivian forestry department for district and community level communications. and dark grey areas are water (W) 49. indicating increasing flammability. Data are for July 16. called FIRECAST. More substantial system enhancements will be implemented in the coming years.4.forest (N). 2011). Light grey is non. Irvine and NASA. with support from a NASA Wildland Fires grant. a supercomputing environment designed for model development and evaluation.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. Figure 7. 2014. ii) enhanced system functionality including user customization. leading to apprehension and deterrence of illegal forest activity within national parks.8 million hectares of protected areas and REDD+ sites in Indonesia and Madagascar. that warns of potential severe fire activity months in advance of a fire season. iii) expansion to new geographies and sectors. they permitted delineation of deforested areas where fire activity had been detected by MODIS. The deforestation and encroachment alerts (Figure 7. http://firecast. and as new data became available the images were downloaded and analyzed for evidence of encroachment occurring within 2.Fundación Amigos de la Naturaleza in Bolivia. (2013). medium grey is forest above 500m ASL (F). while the high-resolution data of Landsat and ASTER are characterized by much greater latency than MODIS imagery. the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Ames and Goddard. including: i) delivery of new NRT earth observation products. and iv) online space for data sharing and collaboration among users. Landsat and ASTER satellite archives were continually surveyed.

The map image enables users to readily visualize the exact location of the fire.5. 2009). or 2 km. and allows subscribers to choose daily NRT alerts. Davies et al. and the CSV file can be ingested into a GIS for further analyses.. MODIS active fire data are available through FIRMS in a range of easy-to-access data 50 (http://earthdata.nasa. A buffer around the protected area can also be specified. FIRMS Components (top) and Web Fire Mapper (bottom).. or weekly 51 MOD45A1: http://modis-fire. The email alert system supports the option to include a map image and a Comma Separated Values (CSV) text file of fire coordinates. The email alerts messaging component of FIRMS delivers MODIS active fire information for specified protected areas or user-defined areas of interest. Developed by UMD in conjunction with NASA Goddard. one month at a time. or used to build up a local database of REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. and view MODIS burned area images for the entire globe. 2011. The open source Web Fire Mapper application allows users to view and query active fire data for any specified date range.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.5) (Justice et al. an interactive web-based mapping system created in 2001.umd. or selecting a specific country or protected area via drop down boxes. Subscribers can specify any area for notification by selecting a rectangle on an interactive map. and access to daily MODIS image subsets (Figure 7. FIRMS is now located at NASA EOSDIS (Earth Observing System Data and Information System) 50.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 188 . FIRMS has four components: Web Fire Mapper. Figure 7. a data downloading tool that enables users to download MODIS active fire data based on date ranges. 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. 4 km. email alerts for protected areas.

DETER also produces monthly/bi-monthly Amazon deforestation alerts that facilitate effective control of forest clearing (Figure 7.formats. PROARCO is INPE’s fire monitoring system 53. DETER alerts are sent to Brazil’s Institute of Environment and Natural Resources (IBAMA) and state government agencies responsible for enforcing forest legislation. and the general public.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 189 . The user subscription information captures their area of interest. including CSV text files.inpe. PROARCO is complemented by the Sistema de Detecção do Desmatamento em Tempo Real na Amazônia (DETER) 54. 52 http://www.6). and deforestation events with an area larger than 25 hectares can be detected. and email delivery preferences. NASA World Wind files and Web Map Service (WMS) files. The PRODES system is based on high resolution Landsat and CBERS imagery capable of detecting small-scale deforestation.dpi. 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. KML files. alert 53 http://www. 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. such as an ESRI Shapefile.obt. 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 interest.inpe. 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. 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. DETER data are based on MODIS. DETER and PRODES The Brazilian Space Research Agency (INPE) has developed multiple deforestation and fire monitoring tools. GFIMS complements existing NRT information systems that deliver data and services to ongoing monitoring and emergency response projects in FAO headquarters and field offices.inpe. PROARCO. 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). However. DETER provides an online mapping interface for displaying historical and NRT data on deforestation and fire. ESRI Shapefiles. in other UN organizations.obt. Distributing active fire information in vector 54 http://www. AVHRR and GOES. DETER provides an important source of data for control and enforcement due to the data’s high temporal resolution. Spanish and English. and delivers an email alert directly to subscribers by reading a database of user-entered subscription information (user profiles).br/deter/indexdeter 55 www. Daily and weekly fire alerts are sent from the GFIMS REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. 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. has the advantage of small file size and allows the option of querying attribute information. 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. Both the DETER and PROARCO web mapping tools operate in Portuguese. PROARCO is a web-based mapping tool publishing daily active fire detections from MODIS.

Aqua GOES and NOAA satellites for the Brazilian Amazon. ImazonGeo supports delivery of SAD text-based alerts via cellphone and email.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 190 . For the deforestation/degradation products. soils. 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.SAD) is a satellite-based monitoring system operated by the Amazon Institute of People and the Environment (IMAZON). filters clouds. and produces a Normalized Difference Fraction Index (NDFI) image showing the relative abundance of green ImazonGeo 56is an interactive web portal distributing spatial information on the status and threats to forests and protected areas in the Brazilian Amazon. shade and non-photosynthetic vegetation components that are used by IMAZON to detect deforestation and degradation over time.imazongeo. DETER and PRODES. These data are available for download as shapefiles from the ImazonGEO website.Figure 7. SAD has been operating in the State of Mato Grosso since August 2006 and in the Amazon since April 2008.6 Yellow dots represent the location of deforestation in an alert issued by DETER. IMAZON Deforestation Alert System (SAD) and ImazonGeo The Deforestation Alert System (Sistema de Alertas de Desmatamento . corroborative measurement of Amazon deforestation statistics produced by INPE’s PRODES program. ImazonGeo operates in Portuguese and English. the IMAZON SAD team creates a temporal mosaic of daily MODIS MOD09GQ and MOD09GA products. statistics and reports. Brazil. In addition to online maps.7). 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. and is often used as a source of REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. a national non- governmental organization (NGO) based in Belém. 56 http://www. Included in the web portal are deforestation data from SAD. as well as 29 unique data streams of active fire data that increase the probability of acquiring cloudfree observations from the Terra.

The QUICC products are distributed through multiple sources including: the GloF-DAS web portal 57hosted by Mongabay.8). and December) for all forest and woodland areas that have lost at least 40% of their green vegetation cover during the previous 57 http://rainforests.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 191 .7 ImazonGeo. 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 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. 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. September. 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. June. WRI’s Global Forest Watch web page. and several other third-party data distribution systems (Figure 7.Figure 7.

and raw Landsat 8 images (before and after burns) (Figure 7. 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.8 GloF-DAS CIFOR Interactive Fire Risk Tool The Center for International Forest Research (CIFOR).org/map/fire/ REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7.9).cifor. based in Indonesia.Figure 7. and as a tool suitable for the monitoring of commodity supply chains. has created a web-based fire risk mapping application 58. These data are useful for facilitating enforcement of environmental regulations established by the Indonesian national and provincial authorities. timber and oil palm plantation concessions.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 192 . 58 http://www. logging moratorium boundaries.

WRI’s Global Forest Watch 2.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 193 . REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. historical forest change and fire products from a variety of internal and external sources (Table 7.4). GFW 2.Figure 7.0 was initiated in 2011 as a comprehensive online social networking.9 CIFOR Interactive Fire Risk Tool.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. mapping and data distribution portal providing access to a range of NRT.

The map interface displays each of the forest monitoring datasets over user-specified time periods for individual countries. carbon stocks and emissions. The country page. for example. iii) data download. These include: employment and income generated from the forestry sector. relevant forestry legislation. publishing statistics for these time periods and enabling download of the selected data in a variety of GIS formats. and v) a blog.0 website – still in beta as of this writing – operates in seven languages and is divided into multiple pages. 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. provides basic statistics for a user-specified country on a number of forest-related metrics. ii) online mapping.4.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 194 . REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Forest monitoring data available through the Global Forest Watch data portal and online mapping interface The GFW 2. iv) stories. Each page covers a different theme or topic including: i) country-specific data and statistics. and relevant international conventions.

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

0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 196 . international NGOs (22 percent). protected areas. Indonesia and Madagascar.3. and enable fire control and prevention. Annual and bi-monthly statistics can also be displayed on 2004-2014 vegetation change for each of these areas of interest. The survey results provided information on how different institutions incorporate NRT data into their decision-making processes. 12 percent for education and training. 19 percent for protected areas management. and studying the influence of climate change on fire frequency. and the private sector (10 percent). The 118 respondants represented national NGOs (28 percent). academic institutions and the press (20 percent).11) and for download in a range of GIS formats by country-specific areas of interest (ecoregions. helping to build awareness. the survey was expanded to include in-depth interviews with users. Peru.6 Utility of NRT monitoring systems In November 2011. as well as institutional assessments of NRT monitoring systems in Bolivia. The survey results confirmed numerous anecdotal reports from users in Madagascar. prioritizing resource management based on fire intensity and ecological vulnerability.11. Terra-i online map interface showing NDVI greenness anomalies from 2004-2013 7. Indonesia. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Respondents also indicated that NRT and seasonal fire risk forecasting information presented valuable contributions to their decision-making activities. improving protected areas and plantation forest management.interface (Figure 7. for example. helping inform strategy. In 2013. 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. indigenous areas and political units). and 3 percent for social and public health-related activities. Figure 7. Over 21 percent of the respondents were using the data to support forest surveillance and monitoring efforts. Peru and Bolivia about how forest and fire monitoring data facilitate conservation and management objectives. These applications included active fire suppression. In Madagascar. The fire data were perceived as having high intrinsic value. 17 percent to assist with policy development related to conservation and sustainable development. 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. 13 percent for research. with 73 percent of respondents reporting that the fire alerts were very useful for their work or research. fire control and prevention workshops. trigger official enforcement responses to deforestation and degradation. government agencies (20 percent).

they will need to assess the utility of NRT monitoring systems for their needs in terms of bandwidth demands. but these systems require the user to repeatedly access the website to obtain the latest information. 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. provide both.) may significantly enhance the value of NRT data in the context of decision making and response. content-rich data portals with robust functionality.7. email alerts. User-customization Providing precise geolocation information on forest threats can prove extremely beneficial to users engaged in actively responding to illegal forest activity. No-cost. vegetation types. As countries incorporate NRT monitoring into NFMS. such as FIRMS and Firecast. resulting in significant lag times between publishing the data online and Manually accessing the data – when they are able to go online..7 Key Issues In addition to the technical considerations associated with NRT forest monitoring data (e. 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). particularly outside major urban centers. 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. conservation areas.3.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 197 . email alerts) on forest threats in a timely manner. Furthermore. 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.g. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. or – for those users operating smart phones – low-bandwidth web-based notifications and simple mapping applications. An important advance in the evolution of NRT monitoring was the development of automated “push”-based data delivery systems. Manual data access systems require end-users to logon to a website and search for the information in a web browser. 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. It is therefore critical that NRT data distribution systems be optimized so that users are able to access notifications (e.g. user- customization options. etc. The end-user explores the NRT data interactively across broad geographic areas.g. Distribution of NRT alerts to such users is best performed via text messages. 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. subscription-based automated delivery systems further enable users to define customized alerts that target specific areas-of-interest. Bandwidth demands Broadband internet access in many countries continues to be limited. REDD+ project areas. the need for cloud-free imagery with minimum latency or adequate spatial resolution). as described in the “User-Customization” section above. administrative management units.. decrease the frequency in which users receive alerts and increase in the likelihood that alerts will be given proper attention once they are received.. may operate too slowly to be readily useful for institutions operating with low-bandwidth internet connections. 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. such as interactive mapping. such as illegal logging or encroachment. Some NRT monitoring systems. while the other provides access to NRT data with minimum latency and end-user effort. automated push-based data delivery systems versus Manual data access systems and local buy-in and ownership. Web-based.

. While such systems may not contribute directly to the required reporting. Furthermore. and may ignore or suppress use of such data that they do receive. greater opportunities for NRT systems that can be incorporated into alert systems exist. it is important to establish early. they provide a robust first look and increase the potential for countries and programs to improve adaptive forest management and enforcement capabilities.Trust. particularly if public dissemination carries legal or financial ramifications. To overcome this potential barrier and obtain official buy-in for NRT data by government agencies.3. and some existing systems are evolving to integrate more data streams and offer an expanding array of services. including social networking and mobile data exchange. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. for example.g. fire risk.8 Conclusion An ever-growing number of NRT forest monitoring systems focusing on active fire. As more satellite data options become available. 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. regarding accuracy of data). Government agencies may prohibit official use of NRT monitoring data generated and supplied by non-official sources. and large-scale deforestation are being created each year. or by rebranding the website and/or alert system and associated emails to host the respective government agency’s logo. by embedding the functionality of an interactive mapping web page streaming NRT data within a government agency website. NRT systems represent a useful component to any MRV system. Instead. designers and managers of NRT monitoring systems may find it useful to explore government “ownership” of the systems. and they are are adverse to data and systems from foreign entitites beyond a country’s jurisdiction. positive working relationships with the appropriate government counterparts and address their potential concerns (e. 7. Governments often prefer to control the generation and access to information. it involves trust and ownership of data.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 198 . and associated acquisitions become less costly. Further.

Forecasting fire season severity in South America using sea surface temperature anomalies.K. New York. M. Randerson. Justice. B. doi:10. p. O’Neal.7. NASA Earth Science Applied Sciences Program 2010 Annual Report... Small. C. Clark. Wong. 2005. Collatz. T. S. 2009. The Near Real Time Processing Effort. 2003. Winter 2005. An enhanced contextual fire detection algorithm for MODIS.K. K. A. Science 334: 787-791. Chaves. In: Land Remote Sensing and Global Environmental Change. M. 16. Rasolohery.M. et al. DeFries. P.M. 11: 661-679. D. A. 2003. L. J. 2013. C. M. Photogrammetric Engineering & Remote Sensing 69(3): 275-282. Application of merged 1- m and 4-m resolution satellite data to research and management in tropical forests. Tabor. Spatial Analyses of Logging Impacts in Amazonia Using Remotely Sensed Data. Eduardo M. J. O. Soliz.3.1109/TGRS. Jin. Read. Mendoza. doi:10. C. REDD+ MRV MANUAL: CHAPTER 7. Read. Y. Giglio. Justice. Descloitres. E. Ledezma. O. and Kaufman. C. 2011. MODIS-Derived Global Fire Products. Morton. Giglio. O. Abrams. Springer. and C. M. David B.. J. Y. Marlier. J. C. Cano. Moreira 2003. 2011. Environmental Management 52: 136-150. Justice and M. K. J.. J. eds. E. Crosslink Newsletter.. and Marcelo P. 2013.1016/S0034-4257(03)00184-6. Ermayanti. A satellite model of forest flammability. Fire Information for Resource Management System: Archiving and Distributing MODIS Active Fire Data. E. Assessing the Use of the FIRECAST Near Real-Time Monitoring System as a Tool for Decision Support. Ilavajhala.0 – THEMATIC REVIEWS 199 . S. Final Report to NASA Earth Science Applied Sciences Program. Tabor. Journal of Applied Ecology 40: 592-600. Kasibhatla. Steininger. L. R. NASA. C. Venticinque. D. Remote Sensing of Environment 87:273-282. L. J.. Ramachandran. G. doi: 10. O. Y. J. 2010. J. J. Davies.2002076 Giglio..1007/978-1-4419-6749-7_29 Musinsky. Pinto.. J. Justice.2008. S. E.9 References Chen. IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing 47 (1):72-79.

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