The FAOSTAT Database of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Agriculture - IOPscience. Tubiello, F. N.; Salvatore, M.; Rossi, S.; Ferrara, A.; Fitton, N.; and Smith, P. 8(1):015009+.
The FAOSTAT Database of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Agriculture - IOPscience [link]Paper  doi  abstract   bibtex   
Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture, including crop and livestock production, forestry and associated land use changes, are responsible for a significant fraction of anthropogenic emissions, up to 30\,% according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Yet while emissions from fossil fuels are updated yearly and by multiple sources – including national-level statistics from the International Energy Agency (IEA) – no comparable efforts for reporting global statistics for agriculture, forestry and other land use (AFOLU) emissions exist: the latest complete assessment was the 2007 IPCC report, based on 2005 emission data. This gap is critical for several reasons. First, potentially large climate funding could be linked in coming decades to more precise estimates of emissions and mitigation potentials. For many developing countries, and especially the least developed ones, this requires improved assessments of AFOLU emissions. Second, growth in global emissions from fossil fuels has outpaced that from AFOLU during every decade of the period 1961-2010, so the relative contribution of the latter to total climate forcing has diminished over time, with a need for regular updates. We present results from a new GHG database developed at FAO, providing a complete and coherent time series of emission statistics over a reference period 1961-2010, at country level, based on FAOSTAT activity data and IPCC Tier 1 methodology. We discuss results at global and regional level, focusing on trends in the agriculture sector and net deforestation. Our results complement those available from the IPCC, extending trend analysis to a longer historical period and, critically, beyond 2005 to more recent years. In particular, from 2000 to 2010, we find that agricultural emissions increased by 1.1\,% annually, reaching 4.6 Gt CO2 yr-1 in 2010 (up to 5.4-5.8 Gt CO2 yr-1 with emissions from biomass burning and organic soils included). Over the same decade 2000-2010, the ratio of agriculture to fossil fuel emissions has decreased, from 17.2\,% to 13.7\,%, and the decrease is even greater for the ratio of net deforestation to fossil fuel emissions: from 19.1\,% to 10.1\,%. In fact, in the year 2000, emissions from agriculture have been consistently larger – about 1.2 Gt CO2 yr-1 in 2010 – than those from net deforestation. [Excerpt: Conclusions] In this letter we provided details of a new and robust database of agriculture emissions, based on common FAOSTAT activity data and IPCC Tier 1 default emission factors. The approach ensures consistency with previous global and regional estimates, as well as comparability across regions and time, for the 1961-2010 reference period. Recognizing that countries report their emission data to UNFCCC with a range of nationally validated approaches, the FAOSTAT emissions database could nonetheless represent a benchmark for data quality control/quality assurance, aimed at helping countries fill data gaps and improve analysis, similar to the role of the AIE database with respect to fossil fuel emissions. [\n] Our analyses indicated that AFOLU emissions are increasing, but not as fast as the rate of emissions from fossil fuels, meaning that the ratio of AFOLU to total anthropogenic GHG emissions is declining. Over the same period, agricultural productivity has increased faster than have emissions, showing an improvement in the GHG intensity of agricultural products – though with different rates of progress in different regions. Agricultural emissions from all contributing sectors were found to be increasing, with some faster than others. For example, emissions from synthetic fertilizer application are growing much faster than those from manure. Deforestation emissions, however, are declining. In terms of difference between regions, agricultural emissions in developing countries are increasing at a faster rate than those in developed countries, with some regions (e.g. Europe), showing declines. [\n] Significant data gaps preclude calculation of emissions on an equivalent basis for comparison to other emission categories. These data gaps concern biomass burning, fires and drained organic soils. In this letter, we have used alternative data sources to fill this gap, but a priority should be to improve collection and analysis of data on extent of biomass burning and the extent of drained organic soils, an activity towards which FAOSTAT could contribute via dedicated questionnaires to member countries and renewed work on geo-spatial data analysis. [\n] The database and approach outlined in this letter is more than an accounting exercise. The outputs provide important information on the key sources of GHG emissions from the AFOLU sector, the regions in which they occur and the rates of change. Wherever greenhouse gas emissions occur, there is potential to reduce emissions, so the outputs of this study can also be used to identify hotspots (in terms of regions and activities) for potential mitigation action. It is in defining the regionally appropriate mitigation actions that we can turn the problems identified in a spatial emissions database into practical solutions (Smith et al 2008).
@article{tubielloFAOSTATDatabaseGreenhouse2013,
  title = {The {{FAOSTAT}} Database of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Agriculture - {{IOPscience}}},
  author = {Tubiello, Francesco N. and Salvatore, Mirella and Rossi, Simone and Ferrara, Alessandro and Fitton, Nuala and Smith, Pete},
  date = {2013},
  journaltitle = {Environmental Research Letters},
  volume = {8},
  pages = {015009+},
  issn = {1748-9326},
  doi = {10.1088/1748-9326/8/1/015009},
  url = {https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/8/1/015009},
  abstract = {Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture, including crop and livestock production, forestry and associated land use changes, are responsible for a significant fraction of anthropogenic emissions, up to 30\,\% according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Yet while emissions from fossil fuels are updated yearly and by multiple sources -- including national-level statistics from the International Energy Agency (IEA) -- no comparable efforts for reporting global statistics for agriculture, forestry and other land use (AFOLU) emissions exist: the latest complete assessment was the 2007 IPCC report, based on 2005 emission data. This gap is critical for several reasons. First, potentially large climate funding could be linked in coming decades to more precise estimates of emissions and mitigation potentials. For many developing countries, and especially the least developed ones, this requires improved assessments of AFOLU emissions. Second, growth in global emissions from fossil fuels has outpaced that from AFOLU during every decade of the period 1961-2010, so the relative contribution of the latter to total climate forcing has diminished over time, with a need for regular updates. We present results from a new GHG database developed at FAO, providing a complete and coherent time series of emission statistics over a reference period 1961-2010, at country level, based on FAOSTAT activity data and IPCC Tier 1 methodology. We discuss results at global and regional level, focusing on trends in the agriculture sector and net deforestation. Our results complement those available from the IPCC, extending trend analysis to a longer historical period and, critically, beyond 2005 to more recent years. In particular, from 2000 to 2010, we find that agricultural emissions increased by 1.1\,\% annually, reaching 4.6 Gt CO2 yr-1 in 2010 (up to 5.4-5.8 Gt CO2 yr-1 with emissions from biomass burning and organic soils included). Over the same decade 2000-2010, the ratio of agriculture to fossil fuel emissions has decreased, from 17.2\,\% to 13.7\,\%, and the decrease is even greater for the ratio of net deforestation to fossil fuel emissions: from 19.1\,\% to 10.1\,\%. In fact, in the year 2000, emissions from agriculture have been consistently larger -- about 1.2 Gt CO2 yr-1 in 2010 -- than those from net deforestation.

[Excerpt: Conclusions]

In this letter we provided details of a new and robust database of agriculture emissions, based on common FAOSTAT activity data and IPCC Tier 1 default emission factors. The approach ensures consistency with previous global and regional estimates, as well as comparability across regions and time, for the 1961-2010 reference period. Recognizing that countries report their emission data to UNFCCC with a range of nationally validated approaches, the FAOSTAT emissions database could nonetheless represent a benchmark for data quality control/quality assurance, aimed at helping countries fill data gaps and improve analysis, similar to the role of the AIE database with respect to fossil fuel emissions.

[\textbackslash n] Our analyses indicated that AFOLU emissions are increasing, but not as fast as the rate of emissions from fossil fuels, meaning that the ratio of AFOLU to total anthropogenic GHG emissions is declining. Over the same period, agricultural productivity has increased faster than have emissions, showing an improvement in the GHG intensity of agricultural products -- though with different rates of progress in different regions. Agricultural emissions from all contributing sectors were found to be increasing, with some faster than others. For example, emissions from synthetic fertilizer application are growing much faster than those from manure. Deforestation emissions, however, are declining. In terms of difference between regions, agricultural emissions in developing countries are increasing at a faster rate than those in developed countries, with some regions (e.g. Europe), showing declines.

[\textbackslash n] Significant data gaps preclude calculation of emissions on an equivalent basis for comparison to other emission categories. These data gaps concern biomass burning, fires and drained organic soils. In this letter, we have used alternative data sources to fill this gap, but a priority should be to improve collection and analysis of data on extent of biomass burning and the extent of drained organic soils, an activity towards which FAOSTAT could contribute via dedicated questionnaires to member countries and renewed work on geo-spatial data analysis.

[\textbackslash n] The database and approach outlined in this letter is more than an accounting exercise. The outputs provide important information on the key sources of GHG emissions from the AFOLU sector, the regions in which they occur and the rates of change. Wherever greenhouse gas emissions occur, there is potential to reduce emissions, so the outputs of this study can also be used to identify hotspots (in terms of regions and activities) for potential mitigation action. It is in defining the regionally appropriate mitigation actions that we can turn the problems identified in a spatial emissions database into practical solutions (Smith et al 2008).},
  keywords = {*imported-from-citeulike-INRMM,~INRMM-MiD:c-13761242,~to-add-doi-URL,agricultural-resources,carbon-emissions,data,deforestation,featured-publication,ghg,global-scale,hotspot,ipcc-tier-1,mitigation},
  number = {1}
}
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