SERVIR Hindu Kush Himalaya
The SERVIR Hindu Kush Himalaya (SERVIR-HKH) initiative of ICIMOD connects space to villages by generating geospatial information, including Earth observation data from satellites, geographic information systems, and predictive models useful to developing countries. SERVIR is a joint development initiative of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), working in partnership with leading regional organizations around the globe. SERVIR helps those most in need of tools for managing climate risks and land use. SERVIR’s activities in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region are implemented by ICIMOD under the flagship of SERVIR-HKH. The Climate Resilient Forest Management System is one of the services under SERVIR-HKH being implemented in Nepal.
Climate Resilient Forest Management System (CRFMS)
The SERVIR-HKH initiative ofICIMOD,in collaboration with the Department of Forests, Government of Nepal (DoF/GoN), has developed a framework for assessing the vulnerability of forest ecosystems in Nepal. It aims to reduce the vulnerability of forests to climate change and the degradation of forest ecosystems due to anthropogenic drivers. The assessment of forest vulnerability to climate change and the dependence of local communities on these ecosystems follows a “top-down” approach at the landscape level. The identification of site-specific adaptation options based on field-based inputs follows a “bottom-up“approach at the local scale. Vulnerability assessments have been completed for the Chitwan Annapurna Landscape and the Koshi Basin, which cover more than 60% of Nepal’s total geographical area.
To bring science into practice, the DoF/GoN, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Nepal, and ICIMOD conducted several discussions on how CRFMS can improve decision making at the district level. Based on the outcomes of these discussions, three districts from the Chitwan Annapurna Landscape (Chitwan, Nuwakot, and Rasuwa) and three districts from the Koshi Basin (Saptari, Solukhumbu, and Udayapur) have been prioritized. The final products from this service would be a climate sensitivity map, a degradation map and a web-based decision support tool that will depict “adaptation footprints” which are areas requiring urgent attention because of high sensitivity to climate change and high levels of degradation of forest ecosystems. These will help decision makers pinpoint locations and enhance planning and management.
List of activities under CRFMS by DoF/GoN and ICIMOD
- Assessment of vulnerability of forest ecosystems to climate change in selected districts.
- Assessment of degradation of forest ecosystems due to anthropogenic drivers.
- Development of an integrated framework for assessment of vulnerability and adaptation planning of forest ecosystems to climate change and anthropogenic drivers across different altitudinal gradients for climate resilient forest management.
- Development and dissemination of a web-based decision support tool for improved decision-making.
- Capacity building of DoF and other relevant stakeholders in Nepal to understand the impacts of climate change on forests and to identify management and adaptation options using the Decision Support System.
- Joint research publications/presentations based on the vulnerability assessment to present the results to a broader network of peers and decision makers.
A one-day consultation workshop on system design and methodology framework for Climate Resilient Forest Management in Nepal is being jointly organized with DoF/GoN on 9 March 2018 at the ICIMOD headquarters.
- Presentation and discussion on framework of assessment of vulnerability and degradation and list of indicators.
- Presentation and discussion on gaps in application of geographic information system (GIS), remote sensing data, and tools in current practices of District Forest Management and Operational Plans (DFMOP).
- Prioritizing sections in DFMOP for including products from climate resilient forest management system.