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Title: D7.4-2 Review on CO2 emissions mitigation through prescribed burning options to apply prescribed fires within the frame of the Kyoto protocol a case study in Patagonia /
Language: English
Description: Although wildland fire is known as a natural force that has shaped most vegetation types of the world, its mismanagement during the last century has lead to more frequent and catastrophic fires at present times. Apart from the concern raised globally on how to deal with this problem, wildland fires are also being recognized as one of the sources of CO2 and other greenhouse gases (GHG´s) that influence global climate change. One of the techniques used to reduce the risk of destructive wildfires (i.e. prescribed burning), has also the theoretical potential of mitigating carbon emissions, and effectively contributes to the efforts proposed as part of the Clean Development Mechanism within the Kyoto protocol. In order to apply this concept to a real case, a study was set in pine afforestations of the Andean region of Patagonia, Argentina, with the objective of evaluating the potential of prescribed burns for reducing GHG’s emissions. The scenario was established for a period of ten years, in which prescribed burns were compared to the traditional management scheme, which included the probability of annual average of wildfire occurrence based on available wildfire statistics. The two contrasting situations were: 1) Managed afforestations, affected by the annual average rate of wildfires occurred in the same type of afforestations in the region, without prescribed burning, and 2) Same as 1) but with the application of prescribed burning. In order to estimate carbon stocks, and CO2 removals and emissions, we followed the directions given for GHG´s inventories on the AFOLU sector of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Data of afforested area, thinnings, and biomass growth were taken from previous surveys in the study area. Downed dead wood and litter (Forest Fuel Load, FFL) was estimated adjusting equations fitted to those fuels, based on field data. Results show that comparing the two scenarios, prescribed burning reduced CO2 emissions by 44% as compared to the situation without prescribed burnings. Prescribed burning emissions represented about 12% of the total emissions (prescribed burning plus wildfires). Furthermore, avoided wildfires by prescribed burnings allowed an additional 78% GHG's emission mitigation due to extra biomass growth, and its emission mitigation could be kept positive by increasing the treated area several times the used here. In summary, prescribed burnings probed to be a management practice that could not only help prevent wildfires to achieve productive objectives, but also an efficient tool to mitigate worldwide GHG’s emissions.
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Title: D7.4-1 Review report on emissions mitigation through prescribed burning /
Language: English
Description: Forest fires have the potential to feed back to global climate change because of the emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. The amount of biomass burning over the past 100 years has increased dramatically and is now recognised as a significant global source of atmospheric emissions. The techniques that are used to reduce the risk of destructive wildfires, such as prescribed burning, also have the potential of mitigating carbon emissions in the context of the Kyoto Protocol. The current study reviews the importance of accounting for emissions from forest fires and shows that prescribed burning can be a means of reducing carbon emissions. However, very limited data are available on European scale to fully explore its potential. The limited studies suggest that significant reductions can be obtained and that prescribed burning can be a viable option for mitigating CO2 emissions in fire prone countries. The present analyses show that the potential reduction attained by such techniques as a percentage of the reduction in emissions required by the Kyoto Protocol varies from country to country. Out of the 33 countries investigated, in only one the requirements of the Kyoto could potentially be achieved by applying prescribed burning, while three other nations showed a potential reduction of 4-8% of the Kyoto requirements. The majority showed a reduction of less than 2%. This implies that prescribed burning can only make a significant contribution in those countries with high fire occurrence. Over a five year period the emissions from wildfires in the European region were estimated to be 11 million tonnes of CO2 per year, while with prescribed burning application this was approximately six million tonnes, a potential reduction of almost 50%. This means that for countries in the Mediterranean region it may be worthwhile to account for the reduction in emissions obtained when such techniques are applied.
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Title: Global Fire Emissions Database, Version 2 (GFEDv2.1) /
Language: English
Description: This data set consists of 1 degree x 1 degree gridded monthly burned area, fuel loads, combustion completeness, and fire emissions of carbon (C), carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), methane (CH4), non-methane hydrocarbons (NMHC), molecular hydrogen (H2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), nitrous oxide (N2O), particulate matter (PM2.5), total particulate matter (TPM), total carbon (TC), organic carbon (OC), and black carbon (BC) for the time period January 1997 through December 2005. Users must register to access the database. The data can be accessed at - <<http://daac.ornl.gov/cgi-bin/dsviewer.pl?ds_id=849>>.
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