The outcome of negotiations in Cancun (COP 16) encouraged developing country Parties to contribute to mitigation actions in the forest sector by undertaking REDD+ activities. While this progress strengthens the opportunity for many tropical nations to pursue carbon finance for ecosystem protection, it also presents the challenge of assessing national carbon stocks and monitoring change over time. To address this challenge, countries will need to identify the most precise and cost-effective methods for assessing and monitoring carbon stocks, and develop the necessary human capacity to undertake such efforts.
It was in light of these demands and challenges that the Ghana Carbon Map Project was initiated in December, 2009, as a joint initiative of the Katoomba Group’s West Africa Incubator for Ecosystem Services, Nature Conservation Research Centre (NCRC), Oxford University, and Ghana’s Forestry Commission. Technical support and guidance was also provided by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at NASA.