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Reconciling global-model estimates and country reporting of anthropogenic forest CO2 sinks

Abstract : Achieving the long-term temperature goal of the Paris Agreement requires forest-based mitigation. Collective progress towards this goal will be assessed by the Paris Agreement’s Global stocktake. At present, there is a discrepancy of about 4 GtCO2 yr−1 in global anthropogenic net land-use emissions between global models (reflected in IPCC assessment reports) and aggregated national GHG inventories (under the UNFCCC). We show that a substantial part of this discrepancy (about 3.2 GtCO2 yr−1) can be explained by conceptual differences in anthropogenic forest sink estimation, related to the representation of environmental change impacts and the areas considered as managed. For a more credible tracking of collective progress under the Global stocktake, these conceptual differences between models and inventories need to be reconciled. We implement a new method of disaggregation of global land model results that allows greater comparability with GHG inventories. This provides a deeper understanding of model–inventory differences, allowing more transparent analysis of forest-based mitigation and facilitating a more accurate Global stocktake.
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Giacomo Grassi, Jo House, Werner A. Kurz, Alessandro Cescatti, Richard A. Houghton, et al.. Reconciling global-model estimates and country reporting of anthropogenic forest CO2 sinks. Nature Climate Change, Nature Publishing Group, 2018, 8 (10), pp.914 - 920. ⟨10.1038/s41558-018-0283-x⟩. ⟨hal-01889256⟩

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