Environment Counts | State of World’s forests improve, but still add a net 800 million tonnes of CO2 annually to atmosphere :
A major new report titled Global Forest Resources Assessment 2015 (FRA 2015) was released in September 2015 by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The report provides an assessment of the state of the Worldâ€™s forest resources and covers 25 years of forest change.
Report findings include : global forest area fell by 3% from 1990 (4,128 M ha) to 2015 (3,999 M ha); the rate of net forest loss between 2010 and 2015 was half that in the 1990s; net forest loss was mainly in the tropics, while temperate forest area increased; GHG forest emissions from deforestation decreased from 4.0 to 2.9 Gt CO2 annually from 1991-2000 to 2011-2015 (1 Gt or gigatonne = 1 billion tonnes); and the net effect on the atmosphere from all forest emissions and sequestration averaged 0.8 Gt CO2 annually in 2011-2015.
FAO states FRA 2015 is a major step forward beyond each of the previous five year FRAs with substantial improvements in methodologies, coverage of 88% of the worldâ€™s forests, ongoing collective efforts from some 300 national correspondents and partners and the incorporation of data quality indicators for the first time.
The assessment is available in a range of formats, including: the synthesis document Global Forest Resources Assessment 2015; a Desk Reference containing summary tables; a special issue of the Journal Forest Ecology and Management (all articles are peer reviewed and published in full as a New Special Open Access Issue); and, the Forest Land Use Data Explorer â€“ an online database that integrates FRA data with other FAO data sources. A master link for all FRA 2015 assessment products is available at Global Forest Resources Assessments