Nepal’s forestry sector prioritizes reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) and associated activities. The Government of Nepal’s REDD Implementation Centre has been using land cover data for the estimation of forest reference emission levels; preparing emission reduction project documents; and developing monitoring, reporting, and verification (MRV) documents for international reporting. The Department of Forests and Soil Conservation (DoFSC) uses land cover data for different forest management purposes. The Forest Research and Training Centre (FRTC) is actively working on the Forest Resource Assessment and will be responsible for preparing MRV baselines in the future.
The FRTC is collaborating with ICIMOD to co-develop and customize the National Land Cover Monitoring System (NLCMS) for Nepal. ICIMOD has brought more organizations on board to develop the national land cover classification system based on the harmonized and standardized Land Cover Classification System (LCCS) developed by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. Following inputs from different agencies on the classification system, reiteration of training sample collection, development of land cover primitives, and internal review of the generated land cover datasets, the land cover dataset (2000–2018) for Nepal is ready for open review.
In this respect, the FRTC, ICIMOD, and SilvaCarbon are jointly organizing a workshop to present the progress on the first version of annual land cover maps (2000–2018) of Nepal for open review on 23 August 2019 at Hotel Yak and Yeti in Kathmandu, Nepal. The workshop will also present the methodology used for the classification and validation processes.
The NLCMS is part of the Regional Land Cover Monitoring System (RLCMS) being developed by ICIMOD in collaboration with the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC), the United States Forest Services (USFS), and SilvaCarbon, under the SERVIR Initiative (SERVIR-HKH at ICIMOD and SERVIR-Mekong at ADPC), a joint initiative of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The system will generate consistent land cover data for monitoring and change analysis in the region.
The main objectives of this workshop are as follows:
- Present the progress on the annual land cover maps of Nepal (2000–2018) for open review
- Demonstration of the NLCMS for Nepal
- Demonstration of the land cover classification system applied to generate Nepal’s land cover dataset
- Presentation on methodology used and validation
- The participants will provide constructive inputs to improve the land cover data for the national forest inventory and national reporting to multilateral mechanisms such as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
- Consensus on the NLCMS for Nepal
Participants will include experts and stakeholders from organizations that use land cover data for monitoring, reporting, planning, and management activities.