World’s most popular greenhouse gas calculators for agriculture are 60% accurate in tropical developing countries

Measurement and data-sharing of emissions from smallholder agriculture in developing countries are needed to improve emissions estimates. In this photo, a closed chamber is used to measure greenhouse gas emissions in India. Photo: LK Singh (CIMMYT)

Measurement and data-sharing of emissions from smallholder agriculture in developing countries are needed to improve emissions estimates. In this photo, a closed chamber is used to measure greenhouse gas emissions in India. Photo: LK Singh (CIMMYT)

Originally published on the website of the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change and Food Security (CCAFS)

Over half of developing countries intend to decrease greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture, but commonly used methods to estimate agricultural emissions are not always accurate.

Greenhouse gas calculators based on the simplest level of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) methods and data – called “Tier 1” – were sometimes unable to accurately predict changes in emissions due to changes in agricultural practices on typical farms in developing countries, according to a journal article published May 20 in Scientific Reports. In the article ‘Limits of agricultural greenhouse gas calculators to predict soil N2O and CH4 fluxes in tropical agriculture,’ the authors suggest data used to calculate emission factors and populate models largely come from research in temperate, developed countries and do not accurately represent conditions on small farms in tropical developing countries. Read the full blog here.

Download the article: Limits of agricultural greenhouse gas calculators to predict soil N2O and CH4 fluxes in tropical agriculture

This blog was written by by Julianna White, Program Manager and Communications Specialist for the CCAFS Low Emissions Agriculture Flagship.

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Susan Onyango

Susan Onyango

Susan Onyango is the communications specialist for climate change for the World Agroforestry Centre and is based at the headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. With over 12 year’s experience in communication, she promotes the World Agroforestry Centre’s work on climate change, writes blogs and provides communication advice and support to scientists. Susan holds a MA communication studies and a BA in English. Twitter: @susanonyango

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