Stocks and Flows: Carbon Inventory and Mitigation Potential of the Russian Forest and Land Base
Forests within the Russian Federation are a critical component of the global carbon cycle. These forests are estimated to contain approximately 776 million hectares of forestland, or nearly 21 percent of the world’s total, and store 289.4 (±71.8) billion tonnes of carbon, or 28 percent of global carbon, in aboveand below-ground components. Historically, however, policy makers and scientists outside of Russia have had little access to data and information on the forest resources of Russia. Such data are vitally important for meeting the reporting requirements of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and for assessing the potential of Russia’s forests and land use practices to enhance carbon storage above the levels expected to occur. Until now, few studies have investigated the economic potential for additional sequestration within the Russian Federation.
This report examines a number of issues related to forestry and forest carbon sequestration in the Russian Federation. It summarizes and synthesizes data and analytical results presented in a broader technical report developed by a team of Russian scientists (Zamolodchikov et al., 2005). The report is written for the international climate policy community, members of the Russian Federation government responsible for national reporting of forest carbon sinks, and members of the scientific community seeking a synthesized version of the longer technical report.