COST 639 - ObjectivesB. Objectives and benefits
The main objective of the Action is (i) the improved understanding of the management of greenhouse gas emissions from European soils under different forms of land-use and in particular disturbance regimes, (ii) the identification of hot spots of greenhouse gas emissions from soils, (iii) the identification of soil and site conditions that are vulnerable to GHG emissions, (iv) the development of an advanced reporting concept across different forms of land use and land-use changes, (v) the delivery and communication policy relevant GHG reporting concepts, so as (vi) the improvement of the communication between soil C experts. The Action aims to identify gaps in previous projects such as the response of carbon and nitrogen pools in soils under typical regimes of ecosystem disturbances and land-use change. To achieve our objectives, we will establish a communication platform between experts for different forms of land use, modellers and statisticians, and the contributors to the existing framework of greenhouse gas reporting.
The immediate benefit of the Action is that shortcomings of existing GHG reportings (IPCC Good Practice Guidance), that are caused by the insufficient availability of data or difficulties in up-scaling, can be identified and improvements can be elaborated. It is expected that the accounting system of GHG emissions that applies for the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, will be changed and post-2012 a more coherent system will be used. The Action will deliver recommendations for a new data acquisition system. Another benefit will be the establishment of a discussion platform for soil experts who are involved in biogeochemical studies of C and N. A long-term benefit of the Action will be an improved understanding of the effect of land-use change and ecosystem disturbance on GHG emissions from soils and therefore guidance as to where monitoring efforts should be concentrated. The intended publication of the results will ensure that the work will be of a high scientific standard and establish a link between the network and a wider audience. Ideally, the network leads to a cooperation within an EU funded project of the 7th Framework Programme.
Four Working Groups will be established. The WGs are distinguished from each other by scientific discipline and scientific aims. Each WG addresses a specific issue required to achieve consensus towards practical implementation (see section C):
WG 1 - Hot spots for effects of climate change on soil C and N
WG 2 – Relation of Land-use, land-use change, and land-use history on soil C and N
WG 3 – Monitoring, statistics, simulation models
WG 4 – Implementation of results
The WGs 1, 2, 3 will conduct their research efforts simultaneously. After an initial period of data collection and collation, WG1 and WG2 present their position to WG3 and all three will contribute expertise to WG4. The information transfer between these groups will be work through regular joint meetings, which are considered to be the most efficient way integrating the opinions of different WGs. The Action includes three integration activities:
European integration: Collection of information for hot spots across different types of land use and climatic regions.
Regional integration: Collection of information on the effect of land-use change and disturbance within a specific region.
Policy integration: Delivery of information to experts in national GHG Reports. Evaluation of results of the Action in the context with Reporting requirements.