Under the UNFCCC, the 2015 Paris Agreement puts a strong emphasis on “independent nationally determined contributions” as the principal mechanism for countries to contribute to climate change mitigation and recognized the importance of accurate measurement of reduced emissions by sector for periodic (ca. 5-year) review and adjustment of national ambitions and for global stocktaking at appropriate intervals to stay on track toward the global goal of keeping global temperature change well below 2 degrees Celsius. The focus of the presentations was to demonstrate capacity-building actions for applications of remote-sensing technologies and community-level planning in meeting national objectives for contributing to climate change mitigation through agriculture, forest management and land use, support local initiatives for REDD+ and provide reliable measurement of progress made in emissions reductions at scales from local to national. Examples were drawn from experience in Africa.
Woords Hole Research Center, Inc. (WHRC) is an independent research institute founded in 1985 where scientists investigate the causes and effects of climate change in order to identify and implement opportunities for conservation, restoration and economic development around the world. WHRC collaborates with colleaugues from many countries in the global South in order to prevent and reverse deforestation and apply remote sensing and other advanced analytical methods to measure progress towards these goals.
Dr. Houghton is an ecologist who studies the role that terrestrial ecosystems play in climate change and the global carbon cycle. Dr. Pelletier is an ecologist with interests in carbon fluxes from land-cover change and forest conservation. Dr. Bush is an environmental economist whose work has focused on quantitative valuation of forest conservation strategies for households, as well as the microeconomic and social determinants of forest conservation. Mr. Nassikas contributes data collection and analysis to a project that aims to locate and quantify both historical and present-day carbon emissions from the global tropics resulting from land use and land cover change. Dr. Duffy is a physicist who has devoted his career to the use of science in addressing climate change. Prior to joining WHRC, Dr. Duffy served in the White House National Science and Technology Council as the Senior Advisor to the US Global Change Research Program, and as a Senior Policy Analyst in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.