Integrated Sink Enhancement Assessment (INSEA)

The overall objective of INSEA was to develop a scientifically sound assessment tool for the economic and environmental effects of C-sink enhancement measures in agriculture and forestry.

Overview

Sink enhancement measures could not only turn out to be instrumental to attain climate mitigation goals, but could simultaneously become a major driver of how our natural environment is managed. A thorough integrated economic and environmental assessment of the economic and sustainable potentials in the area of land use change in agriculture and forestry has not yet been carried out. In order to support the international negotiation process and for the development of good policies the Integrated Sink Enhancement Assessment (INSEA) project’s objective was to develop an analytical tool to assess economic and environmental effects for enhancing carbon sinks and greenhouse gas abatement measures on agricultural and forest lands. The approach was centered on spatially explicit databases that allowed the calculation of “cost-landscapes” taking on an engineering approach to integrated costs computation of additional sink enhancement measures and negative emission technologies. The various model structures was applied to detailed European data sets and less detailed global data sets assessing cost functions and long-term scenarios of sink enhancement measures. Concise policy conclusions from the modeling exercise aimed at supporting the implementation of the Kyoto Protocol commitments as well as post Kyoto negotiations.

In the proposal IIASA advocate a spatially explicit approach that is motivated by the fact that LULUCF activities, by their very nature, spatial. We propose a deterministic approach for the cost calculations as well as a dynamic, and uncertainty (risk)-based assessment in a multiple input/output environment. We believe that such a multi-faceted approach is necessary to guarantee robustness and consistency across a variety of decision rules for sustainable greenhouse gas management of land resources.

IIASA Research

The overall objective of INSEA was to develop a scientifically sound assessment tool for the economic and environmental effects of C-sink enhancement measures in agriculture and forestry. INSEA has to be seen as the first phase of a long-term activity with the explicit goal to implement LULUCF activities under the Kyoto Protocol and beyond. A major part of the project was devoted to bioeconomic engineering work: to develop a scientific costing concept keeping in view political, scientific, data and technological developments. This was necessary in order to balance between the long-term perspective of maintaining the flexibility to adapt to changing requirements, and to provide accurate supply estimates in the short term. INSEA developed scenarios which were then softly linked to a variety of ancillary integrated assessment models in order to demonstrate the skills of the tools as well as the effects of LULUCF activities on a variety of economic and ecological sectors. The scenario part of the project demonstrated the validity of the concept and point out potential problems (“deliver and learn”).


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Last edited: 28 May 2014

CONTACT DETAILS

Michael Obersteiner

Senior Research Scholar

Ecosystems Services and Management

T +43(0) 2236 807 460

Timeframe

2004 - 2006

More Information

International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
Schlossplatz 1, A-2361 Laxenburg, Austria
Phone: (+43 2236) 807 0 Fax:(+43 2236) 71 313