Schlamadinger, Bernhard (Joanneum Research, Institute of Energy Research, Elisabethstrasse 5, A-8010 Graz, Austria; Phone: +43 316 876 1340; Fax: +43 316 876 1320; Fax PC: +43 316 8769 1340; E-mail:


CarboInvent - Multi-source inventory methods for quantifying carbon stocks and stock changes in European Forests


Bernhard Schlamadinger *


CarboInvent[1] is a project funded by the European Commission with an aim to facilitate preparation of GHG inventories of land subject to forest management, afforestation, reforestation or deforestation for UNFCCC and Kyoto Protocol reporting. The main objectives of the project are to:

        Identify / develop / test multi-source (remote sensing, soils, forest inventory) methods for an improved estimate of carbon stock changes at national / EU levels;

        Establish a set of biomass expansion factors and biomass equations for major EU tree species and forest types, and assess their error ranges;

        Develop methods for estimating soil carbon budgets;

        Develop methods for assessing carbon stock changes occurring after disturbances (mainly windthrow), and

        Apply these methods in test sites and demonstrate how these methods can be upscaled to the national level.

The ingredients mentioned above can be brought together in two different ways:

The top-down approach, applies the NFI data as aggregated at the regional or national level and combines them with nation wide soil data and biomass expansion factors and supplementary information enabling improved stratification, in order to calculate carbon stock changes at regional and national levels. The modelling framework EFISCEN (European Forest Information Scenario Model) and the European Forest Resource Data Base are used in this effort.

The bottom-up approach combines the raw NFI data at the plot level with local data on soils and biomass equations in order to estimate changes in carbon stocks at local levels. Next, carbon estimates at the local scale are combined with remote sensing data to interpolate between forest inventory plots and thus arrive at estimates integrated at the regional or national level.

Both approaches are applied, and compared to each other, at test sites representing the major climatic regions in Europe, with the aim of assessing their pros and cons for monitoring and reporting needs under the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol.



[1] The CarboInvent project unifies scientific efforts of 14 Partners located in 10 countries (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Ireland, Spain, Sweden) and European Community. The project activity was initiated on 1 Nov. 2002 and the financing period ends on 31 Oct. 2005.