Methodological and Technological Issues in Technology Transfer

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12.5.2 Barriers of Technical Capacity

The majority of developing countries do not have adequate technical capacity to participate in international research projects and to adopt and transfer results of the research to the local level. Research on forests has not only suffered from a lack of resources; it has also not been sufficiently interdisciplinary to provide an integrated view of forestry (FAO, 1997). However, the majority of forestry research institutions in developing countries do not function as R&D laboratories, as they do in industrialised countries, and their main focus is on research and not technology development and dissemination. Unlike in the energy or transportation sectors, the technologies or even the management systems are going to be forest type- or country-specific. Additionally, there is lack of training structures to promote technology dissemination.

Under the GEF-UNDP sponsored Asia Least-Cost Greenhouse Gas Abatement Strategy (ALGAS), the US Country Studies Program, and other forestry sector capacity building and analytical activities have identified mitigation options and technologies. Furthermore, the policies to promote technology transfer have been identified (e.g., regulations, financial incentives) and sometimes implemented (e.g., Mexico, Bolivia). Under the UN-FCCC, each party is required to communicate a national inventory of GHG emissions by sources and sinks. A large portion of the parties have completed this task and are trying to understand forestry sector emissions and removals by sinks, which has improved dramatically. Many parties are taking steps to manage forest systems as C reservoirs (Kokorin, 1997).

As a result of the UN-FCCC and Kyoto Protocol, many developing and transition countries are developing National Climate Change Action Plans which incorporate forestry-sector mitigation and adaptation options (Benioff et al., 1997). ''No regrets'' adaptation and mitigation options have been identified that are consistent with national sustainable development goals. Bulgaria, China, Hungary, Russia, Ukraine, Mexico, Nigeria, and Venezuela all have developed very specific forestry sector climate action plans. The Russian Federation has a very progressive forestry sector climate change action plan (Kokorin, 1997). Based on current economic and climate change scenarios several mitigation and adaptation strategies have emerged: (1) creating economic mechanisms to increase forestry sector effectiveness and efficiency in logged (removal) areas, (2) provide assistance for afforestation in Europe's-Ural region, (3) promote fire management and protection for central and north-eastern Siberia, and (4) limit clear-cut logging in southern Siberia. These steps are significant since Russia contains approximately 22% of the world's coniferous forests.

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