Environmental Risk Assessment and Remediation

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Carbon stock loss of Chir pine forest through tree felling in Lower Himalaya.

The Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) indicates that Agriculture, Forestry, and Other Land Use (AFOLU) sector accounts a quarter (10- 12 GtCO2eq/yr) of anthropogenic GHG emissions mainly from deforestation and agricultural emissions. AFOLU emissions could change substantially in transformation pathways, with significant mitigation potential from agriculture and forestry mitigation measures [1]. The Special Report on Emissions Scenarios (SRES) as per A2 emissions scenario reports that the atmospheric CO2 concentration will be between 450-600 ppmv by 2050, and 700-1000 ppmv by 2100. The increased atmospheric CO2 would correspondingly increase global mean surface temperature between 1.5-5.5ºC [2-4]. The high atmospheric concentration of CO2 resulted into increase in temperature will have severe consequences on human and natural systems [5] and would be very cost intensive and challenging to counter the climate change impacts to communities [6]. The challenge of reduction of high atmospheric CO2 concentration can be resolved by reducing the volume of emissions; and capturing and storing CO2 from atmosphere.

Author(s): Munesh Kumar and Rajiv Pandey