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  • Mobilize finance for conservation of globally significant biodiversity.
  • Finance national and global efforts to monitor forests and evaluate the impacts of forest projects and policies- including devolution of forest control.
  • Foster the development of national-level research and evaluation organizations through twinning with established foreign partners.

     At the national level:

  • Create systems for monitoring forest conditions and forest dwellers' welfare, make land and forest allocations and regulations more transparent, and support civil society organizations that monitor regulatory compliance by government, landholders, and forest concessionaires. The prospect of carbon finance can help motivate these efforts.
  • Make forest and land use regulations more efficient, reformulating them to minimize monitoring, enforcement, and compliance costs. Economic instruments can help.

     In wilderness areas:

  • Avert disruptive races for property rights by equitably assigning ownership, use rights, and stewardship of these lands.
  • Options for forest conservation include combinations of indigenous and community rights, protected areas, and forest concessions. Some forests may be converted to agriculture where doing so offers high, sustainable returns and does not threaten irreplaceable environmental assets.
  • Plan for rational, regulated expansion of road networks- including designation of roadless areas.
  • Experiment with new ways of providing services and infrastructure to low-density populations.

     In frontier areas:

  • Equitably assign and enforce property rights.
  • Plan and control road network expansion.
  • Discourage conversion in areas with hydrological hazards, or encourage community management of these watersheds.
  • Use remote sensing, enhanced communication networks, and independent observers to monitor logging concessionaires and protect forest-holders against encroachers.
  • Consider using carbon finance to support government and community efforts to assign and enforce property rights.
  • Encourage markets for environmental services in community- owned forests.

     In disputed areas:

  • Where forest control is transferred to communities, build local institutions with upward and downward accountability.
  • Where community rights are secure and markets are feasible, provide technical assistance for community forestry.
  • Make landholder rights more secure in "forests without trees."


  • When forest tenure is secure, use carbon markets to promote forest regeneration and maintenance.

     Mosaic lands:

  • Reform regulations to reward growing trees. Promote greener agriculture-such as integrated pest management and silvo-pastoral systems-through research and development, extension efforts, community organization, and reform of agriculture and forest regulations.
  • Develop a wide range of markets for environmental services-carbon, biodiversity, water regulation, recreation, pest control-to support more productive, sustainable land management.

7.1.2 Reducing the impacts of climate change and the contribution of agriculture to climate changeAgriculture can contribute to climate change in four major ways:

  • Land conversion and plowing releases large amounts of stored carbon as CO2 from original vegetation and soils;
  • Carbon dioxide (CO2) and particulate matter is emitted from fossil fuels used to power farm machinery, irrigation pumps, and from drying grain, etc., as well as fertilizer and pesticide production;
  • Nitrogen fertilizer applications and related cropping practices such as manure applications and decomposition of agricultural wastes result in emissions of nitrous oxide (N2O); and
  • Methane (CH4) is released mostly through livestock digestive processes and rice production.

The share of the agricultural sector to total global GHG emissions is approximately 58% of CH4 and 47% of N2O making it a significant contributor with a good deal of potential for reduction in emissions in mitigation strategies (Smith et al., 2007). With appropriate policies, each of these well-known sources of GHG can be mitigated to some extent.

Many of these mitigation options are "win-win" as long as they are supported by policy interventions that remove entry barriers and reduce transaction costs. For example, lower rates of agricultural extensification into natural habitats and the re-use/restoration of degraded land, could be encouraged through the participation of farmers in emissions trading, or biofuel production. Farmers can benefit financially depending on the amount of credits generated through carbon storage projects under the Kyoto Protocol, as is already occurring in a number of countries. Despite some transaction costs associated with quantifying and maintaining stored carbon, farmers who implement conservation agriculture; use cover crops to reduce erosion; or reforest degraded lands with tree species that have commercial value could profit financially by selling their credits in an emissions trading market. Agricultural N2O and CH4 mitigation opportunities include proper application of nitrogen fertilizer, effective manure management, and use of feed that increases livestock digestive efficiency. To date, there is little policy or legislation that recognizes the ability of the agricultural sector to provide GHG reductions through mitigation of N2O and CH4 and that provides positive incentives for farmers to adopt more sustainable practices.