Carbon sequestration and emissions

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There will be important opportunities for carbon minimization and carbon sequestration in relation to coastal and marine areas, which can be considered in tandem with adaptation measures. Adaptation and mitigation measures can also be interlinked and complementary.

For example, there are links between adaptive management strategies for agriculture and carbon minimization, and choosing strategies with a lesser carbon footprint. There could also be the reduction of energy uses and substitution of renewable energy for hydrocarbons in agricultural production, harvesting and processing.

Carbon sequestration opportunities could be available for coasts, wetlands, forests, agricultural and pastoral lands on or adjacent to coastal and marine areas throughout Europe and the Mediterranean.

One possible approach could be to develop model carbon minimization and sequestration opportunities, with academic, scientific and commercial support, and using the latest understanding of carbon sequestration strategies.

Combating rural poverty and stabilizing rural economies are among the biggest challenges facing both developed and developing countries. By expanding markets for carbon sequestration and reductions in agriculture and other land and water uses, there could be an opportunity for small and subsistence farmers and land users throughout the world to participate in and benefit from carbon markets.

The share of carbon sequestration projects in the carbon market is limited by the rules and regulations under the Kyoto Protocol and the EU Emissions Trading System. The BioCarbon Fund, World Bank Carbon Finance Unit and other organizations promote land uses and carbon sequestration with the objective of demonstrating that these project activities are important to the growth of the carbon market. They are trying to modify the current rules and regulations under the Kyoto Protocol and the EU ETS, which exclude a large portion of the developing world from gaining access to the carbon market.

As part of the EU green paper on adaptation of climate change and overall ECCP II, the EU could consider modifying its approach to carbon sequestration, credits and markets to allow credits to be allocated for aquatic, coastal, and land uses within Europe and internationally that sequester carbon, methane and other greenhouse gases. Further, the EU could actively support and encourage these changes globally through international climate negotiations, and aid and funding policies.

The main author of this article is Magdalena Muir
Please note that others may also have edited the contents of this article.