BMZ-DLR International Conference on MRV of REDD

with a special focus on the use of satellite data for measuring forest degradation


21st – 22nd September 2015

Stadthalle Bad Godesberg, Bonn, Germany,



-       to deliver an overview of existing implementations of REDD+ MRV systems

-       to provide an overview of available experiences and concepts of national MRVs with a special focus on approximating forest degradation

-       to discuss definitions of forest degradation with a particular focus on ecosystem services, impact of degradation on emissions and ways to report on forest degradation

-       to discuss the examples provided and the levels of certainty which can be achieved using current best practises with the aim to identify knowledge gaps and options to close those gaps

-       to display and discuss cost-efficiency of current system and multi-level applications (basic cartography, infrastructure, agricultural monitoring etc.)

-       to discuss the specific needs for data and capacity building

-       to foster the exchange with the Global Forest Observation Initiative (GFOI)



The “Framework for REDD+”, which was adopted at the UN climate conference in Warsaw (COP 19) in November 2013, also contains a decision on MRV (measuring, reporting, and verification). Here, “Parties are encouraged to improve the data and methodologies (…)”.

Reducing emissions from forest degradation is - as contained in the UNFCCC decision on REDD in Cancun in 2010 - one of five eligible activities of REDD+. Forest degradation can be seen as an action that results in no change of forest area as such, but as a change in quality of the forests’ condition. Given the many different ways to approximate forest degradation levels and the strong forest type dependence of degradation approximation, there is a clear need to focus on measures of degradation and ways to assess their uncertainty.

Even though forest degradation is seen as “one of the major sources of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions”, there is a tremendous lack of information and understanding regarding its significance and quantification on a global scale and at national level, also in the context of “result-based financing”.

On the whole, this shows the urgent need for suitable operational data and monitoring methods that are scientifically sound, applicable in practise, and cost-efficient, to report on forest degradation on large scales within the scope of REDD+.

The conference was conducted back to back with a meeting of the CEOS Space Data Coordination Group in support of the Global Forest Observation Initiative (GFOI). GFOI supports the sustained availability and utilisation of observations for national MRV systems consistent with IPCC guidance and UNFCCC requirements for REDD+ reporting. CEOS is the Committee on Earth Observing Satellites and brings together international space agencies to collaborate on missions, data systems, and global initiatives that benefit society. CEOS co-leads the GFOI together with Norway, Australia, the USA and the FAO.


Please find here the programme and all presentations. Here you find the summary report.


The list of participants can be found here.