LEAF Scoping Mission Report: Vietnam and Lao PDR
This report describes a scoping mission by an international carbon expert, Felipe Casarim of Winrock International, to Vietnam and Laos in 2012. Casarim investigated data as part of preparation for implementing REDD+ activities in both countries. He also met with technical experts who might support USAID’s Lowering Emissions in Asia’s Forests (LEAF) program.
In Vietnam, the mission led to greater understanding of its forest cover and land use. The report noted that there is more forest cover overall due to commercial plantations but at the same time, there is continued deforestation and degradation. This creates a challenge for monitoring reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, especially regarding stratification of forest areas and development of emission factors.
Meetings in Vietnam led to the cementing of REDD+ objectives, including outlining in a document how stakeholders will be part of a national forest carbon monitoring system, including legal rights, responsibilities, revenues, and relationships.
In Laos, Casarim and government officials created a plan to harmonize LEAF and other projects. Field training will focus on forest carbon assessment and destructive sampling for allometric equation development. The report notes that REDD+ work in Laos will start from scratch and the LEAF program will assist it with technical advice.
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