Methodological and Technological Issues in Technology Transfer

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12.2.1 Features of Forestry Mitigation Technologies

Long gestation period. Decisions on transfer and adoption of technologies are going to be determined by the anticipated carbon abatement and long-term biological (such as biodiversity) and socio-economic factors. Forestry projects (such as hard wood plantations) could take 50-100 years to provide carbon mitigation benefits. The long gestation period leads to uncertainties regarding carbon abatement and socio-economic impacts.

Linked to subsistence economy. In tropical countries millions of indigenous and rural households depend on forests for their livelihood, whereas in temperate countries dependence on forestry is largely commercial, although protective functions of the forests are important too. Forestry projects could impact on the livelihood and local economies in developing countries.

Subject to natural calamities. Forests and plantations are subjected to fire, drought, pests and diseases affecting the C stocks and flows. Thus, any intervention will have to be carefully evaluated.

Climate and location specificity of technologies. Forestry technologies vary among tropical, temperate and boreal regions, as well as with varying forest and plantation types, precipitation regions and socio-economic pressures.

State control of forests. In most countries, and particularly in tropical countries, forests are largely controlled and managed by the state forest departments.

Mitigation options involving minimal technology transfer. Some of the mitigation options require only policy initiatives, funding, regulations and control (e.g., ban on forest conversion or extraction).

Links to local and global environmental factors. Decisions on forestry will affect biodiversity and other ecological benefits such as. watershed protection, soil erosion protection, resilience to climate change and prevention of desertification. Sustainable forest management practices could be beneficial to timber logging countries for conserving biodiversity and watersheds. Most of the local and global environmental benfits have not been well quantified in monetary values.

Low economic return: Forestry technologies generally have low economic return. This impedes the investments from private (commercial) setors.

Long term sustainable approach. Requires adoption of long term sustainable management practices.

Participation of local communities. Local participation is required for implementing mitigation projects where local communities currently reside in or depend on the forests.

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