FAO launches online platform

José Graziano da Silva - FAO Director-General
José Graziano da Silva – FAO Director-General

A new online platform launched by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) will allow countries to improve the assessment of forest volumes, biomass and carbon stocks.

The data is crucial for climate change research and mitigation activities, such as increasing the carbon stock in forests through reforestation, and bioenergy development.

A statement signed by Irina Utkina of the FAO Media Relations in Rome and copied to the Ghana News Agency on Saturday, noted that the new GlobAllomeTree was jointly developed by FAO, the French Research Centre and Tuscia University of Italy.

It said the new GlobAllomeTree is an international, web-based platform designed to help climate-change project developers, researchers, scientists and foresters calculate forest biomass and forest carbon.

It said the data would assist national policymakers in making informed decisions about their climate change and bioenergy strategies.

“This is the first time that countries have access to an extensive database of tree models used to evaluate forest resources worldwide. It allows them to get a clear picture on their forests’ capacities to store carbon,” says FAO Forestry Officer, Matieu Henry.

The statement said the tool enables users to assess stem volume, tree biomass and carbon stocks from tree characteristics such as trunk diameter, height and wood specific gravity, for various types of trees and ecological zones.

It stated that access to the tool is free and users could also develop and submit their own calculation models.

“At current status, the tool covers 61 tree species in seven different ecological zones in Europe, 263 tree species in 16 ecological zones in North America and 324 species in nine ecological zones in Africa.

“The calculation tools for South Asia, South-East Asia and Central and South America are soon to be finalised and uploaded to the platform,” it said.

It stated that this new platform would be particularly useful in the context of REDD+ activities reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation and increasing the carbon stock in forests, where governments would need more accurate assessment of the forest carbon stocks and carbon stock changes.

It said in this context, few countries have already advanced their approaches to forest monitoring for REDD+ by using tree calculation models.

“These efforts will help countries to obtain more accurate data on the status of forest resources and forest carbon stocks and changes and support implementation of national and international forestry policies.”

Source: GNA

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