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ACTIVITIES IMPLEMENTED JOINTLY(AIJ)


 
USIJI Uniform Reporting Document:
Activities Implemented Jointly Under the Pilot Phase

List of Projects

A. Description of the AIJ project

1. Title of project: Project BIODIVERSIFIX

2. Host country: Costa Rica

3. Brief project description:

Project BIODIVERSIFIX combines two subprojects, WETFIX and DRYFIX, that will regenerate degraded tracts of tropical wet forest and tropical dry forest in the Area de Conservacíon Guanacaste (ACG) in Costa Rica. The ACG contains forest conserved for sustainable, non-damaging use of wildland biodiversity. Possible activities conducted on this land include low-impact controlled ecotourism, biological education programs, biodiversity prospecting, research programs, watershed protection, and regeneration and selective harvest of fine hardwoods. The greenhouse gas (GHG) benefits of the project accrue from forest growth (i.e., carbon sequestration) that would not have occurred in the absence of project activities.

4. Participants:

Name of Organization or Individual

Country

Ministry of the Environment and Energy (MINAE); Area de Conservacíon Guanacaste (ACG)

Costa Rica

The Nature Conservancy (TNC)

U.S.A.

Item

Organization

Name of organization (original language)

or

Name of individual if unaffiliated with any organization

Ministerio de Ambiente y Energía-formerly Ministerio de Recursos Naturales, Energía y Minas

Name of organization (English)

Ministry of Environment and Energy-formerly Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mines

Acronym (original language)

MINAE, formerly MIRENEM

Acronym (English)

None

Department

Area de Conservacíon Guanacaste (ACG) (Guanacaste Conservation Area), part of MINAE's Sistema Nacional de Areas de Conservacíon (SINAC) (National System of Conservation Areas)

Function(s) within the AIJ project activities

Project development, project administration, government regulation/oversight

Street

Apdo. 169-5000

City

Liberia

State

Guanacaste Province

Post code

Country

Costa Rica

Telephone

506-695-5598

Fax

(Same as above)

E-mail

World Wide Web-URL address

Administrative Officer Responsible for the Project

Surname

Marín

First name, middle name

Sigifredo

Job title

Director, ACG

Direct telephone

506-695-5598

Direct fax

(Same as above)

Direct e-mail

smarin@acguanacaste.ac.cr

Contact Person for AIJ Activities (if different from the Administrative Officer)

Surname

Janzen

First name, middle name

Dan

Job title

Direct telephone

215-898-5636 (U.S.A.)

Direct fax

215-898-8780 (U.S.A.)

Direct e-mail

djanzen@sas.upenn.edu

Item

Organization

Name of organization (original language)

or

Name of individual if unaffiliated with any organization

The Nature Conservancy

Name of organization (English)

(Same as above)

Acronym (original language)

TNC

Acronym (English)

(Same as above)

Department

Function(s) within the AIJ project activities

Technical assistance

Street

1815 North Lynn Street

City

Arlington

State

Virginia

Post code

22209

Country

U.S.A.

Telephone

703-841-5300

Fax

E-mail

World Wide Web-URL address

http://www.tnc.org

Administrative Officer Responsible for the Project

Surname

Sawhill

First name, middle name

John C.

Job title

President and CEO

Direct telephone

Direct fax

Direct e-mail

Contact Person for AIJ Activities (if different from the Administrative Officer)

Surname

Curtis

First name, middle name

Randall

Job title

Direct telephone

703-841-4864

Direct fax

703-841-4880

Direct e-mail

5. Description of AIJ project activities

Item

Type of Project

Sector(s)

Land-use change and forestry

Primary activity(ies)

Reforestation, fire management, anti-poaching operations

Project Location

Country

Costa Rica

Exact location (city, state, region)

In the Area de Conservacíon Guanacaste (ACG) in northwestern Costa Rica, slightly south of the Nicaraguan border between the towns of La Cruz and Liberia

Key Dates and Current Stage of Project

Project starting date (month/year)

To be determined

Project ending date (month/year)

August 2046

Project lifetime (years)

51

Current stage of project

Mutually agreed

General Project Description and Technical Data


Project BIODIVERSIFIX combines two subprojects, WETFIX and DRYFIX, that will regenerate degraded tracts of tropical wet forest and tropical dry forest in the 135,000-hectare (ha) Area de Conservacíon Guanacaste (ACG) in Costa Rica. The ACG contains forest conserved for sustainable, non-damaging use of wildland biodiversity. Possible activities conducted on this land include low-impact controlled ecotourism, biological education programs, biodiversity prospecting, research programs, watershed protection, and regeneration and selective harvest of fine hardwoods. The total project area is 58,500 ha.

Carbon sequestration in Project WETFIX will be accomplished by restoring 13,500 ha of abandoned or marginal pasture interspersed throughout a 40,000-ha mosaic of middle-aged to primary wet forest. Some 6,100 ha of natural and semi-natural forest will be regenerated within the current boundaries of the ACG, and 7,400 ha of marginal pasture will be purchased and added to the ACG.

Project DRYFIX will consolidate the dry side of the ACG into a single forest unit. Carbon sequestration will be accomplished by restoring 45,000 ha of abandoned or marginal pasture interspersed throughout an 80,000-ha mosaic of middle-aged to primary dry forest. Approximately 36,000 ha of natural and semi-natural dry forest within the ACG will be restored using natural regeneration. Another 9,000 ha of marginal pasture will be purchased, added to the ACG, and planted with very valuable, slow-growing native hardwood species, with potential for sustainable harvest.

6. Cost

(a) Explanation of methodology for calculating cost data

Methodology for Calculating Cost Data


The project developer prepared a minimal project budget for WETFIX and DRYFIX. The activities for which cost estimates were prepared include the following: land purchase for semi-natural reforestation (7,400 ha @ $700/ha for WETFIX and 4,000 ha @ $500/ha for DRYFIX); contribution to land purchase of 13,000 ha for natural reforestation (DRYFIX only); the semi-natural planting of project land (13,500 ha @ $833/ha for WETFIX and 9,000 ha @ $400/ha for DRYFIX); a contribution to the ACG overall management endowment to cover the estimated annual direct costs of project-related anti-poaching activities, road maintenance, and office infrastructure; a contribution to ACG's Horizontes Forest Experiment Station management endowment; short-term implementation costs incurred by Horizontes (e.g., vehicles, building modification, nurseries, local irrigation, bridge repair, seed storage, etc.); a contribution to the ACG overall management endowment to cover estimated direct costs for the Research Program for restoration monitoring and information development, including "green seal" certification; a contribution to the ACG research program for the biodiversity inventory and ecosystem characterization of the evaluation plots and their habitats; and project administration (9%).

The price that the ACG secures for the project's carbon fixation and the associated payment schedule will determine the level of activity conducted during the course of the project and the ultimate cost of the project.

(b) Cost data-Project development

This information is not yet available.

(c) Cost data-Project implementation

Annual implementation cost information is not yet available.

Itemized Project Implementation Costs

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7. Monitoring and verification of AIJ project activities and results

Item

Party(ies) that will be monitoring project activities

The ACG's Horizontes Forest Experiment Station and the ACG Research Program

Party(ies) that will be externally verifying project results

May include "green seal" organizations such as Rainforest Alliance or Green Cross. Additional information is not yet available.

Date when the monitoring plan became (or will become) operational (month/year)

This information is not yet available.

Types of data that will be collected

Biomass growth rate, biomass density, tree species and age class, biomass carbon content. Additional information is not yet available.

Description of Monitoring and Verification Activities and Schedule for Implementation


The monitoring plan includes annual visual inspection, destructive sampling on permanent management plots, and computerized site visit records. This visual knowledge will be reinforced by 1:40,000 aerial photography (first done in 1988, second in 1995) at ten-year intervals. All of these photographs will constitute part of the GIS knowledge base for the ACG.

Satellite imagery will be available as a useful tool for long-term monitoring and verification, but normally much greater resolution will be obtained from the once-per-decade aerial photographs, which will be incorporated into the INBio-ACG GIS system. Annually available LANDSAT images can serve as back-up corroboration.

The participants agreed to adhere to a "green seal" audit by organizations such as Rainforest Alliance or Green Cross.

B. Governmental approval

Item

Please check one of the following.

This report is a first report.

or

This report is an intermediate report.

or

This report is a final report.

Please check one of the following:

This report is a joint report. Letter(s) of approval of this report from the designated national authority of the other Party(ies) involved in the activity is(are) attached in Section J, Annex.

or

This report is a separate report.

Additional comments (if any):

C. Compatibility with, and supportiveness of, national economic development and socioeconomic and environmental priorities and strategies

Compatibility with Economic Development and Socioeconomic and Environmental Priorities


The letters of host country acceptance for Projects WETFIX and DRYFIX state that these projects will serve as "an integral part of the overall management and non-damaging use plan" for the ACG, and contribute to national sustainable development priorities. Furthermore, these letters state that both projects are consistent with existing Costa Rican laws and regulations.

D. Environmental, social/cultural, and economic impacts of the AIJ project

Non-Greenhouse-Gas Environmental Impacts of the Project


Under the institutional and operational framework of the ACG, Project BIODIVERSIFIX will contribute to the restoration, management, and development of tropical wet and dry forest ecosystems and biodiversity. It will also serve as a major pilot project for other such integrated attempts throughout the tropics. The ACG is anticipated to be the site of the world's first All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory (ATBI), to be conducted jointly by the INBio and MINAE (as represented by ACG).

Social/Cultural Impacts of the Project


According to the project developer, the ACG and Project BIODIVERSIFIX seek to achieve "the integration of society into wildland conservation" in the context of local agriculture, forestry, natural resource management, and culture.

Economic Impacts of the Project


Project BIODIVERSIFIX promotes an economic transition from marginal cattle ranching to sustainable tree harvesting, conservation management, and tourism. It also seeks to create secure jobs for marginally employed ranchers as paraprofessional personnel for the ACG.

E. Greenhouse gas impacts of the AIJ project

1. Scenario description

Item

Site Designation

Site number (order of presentation in this report)

1 of 2

Site name/designation

WETFIX

Project sector

Land-use change and forestry

Reference Scenario

Primary activity(ies)

Marginal agriculture, abandonment of pasture and unused land

Has the reference scenario changed since the last report? (If yes, explain any changes below.)

Yes

No

This is the first project report.

Description:

The WETFIX portion of the ACG comprises 13,500 ha of abandoned or marginal pasture or otherwise unused land from which forests have been cleared over the last 100-400 years. The WETFIX parcels are interspersed throughout a 40,000-ha mosaic of middle-aged to primary wet forest. In the absence of project activities, the WETFIX portion is expected to remain unchanged, resulting in zero carbon emissions or sequestration.

Predicted Project Scenario

Primary activity(ies)

Reforestation, fire management, anti-poaching operations

Description:

In the project scenario, 7,400 ha of marginal pasture will be purchased and added to the ACG. On this land, hardwood species will be planted and allowed to regenerate "semi-naturally." When the trees reach marketable size, which is expected to occur after the project has ended, selected harvesting for the manufacture of long-term wood products may occur on a sustainable basis, providing management income for the ACG and increasing the amount of carbon sequestered. The remaining 6,100 ha of WETFIX land, consisting of abandoned pastures, old fields, and very young secondary succession located within the ACG, will naturally regenerate to tropical wet forest. This regeneration process is facilitated by anti-poaching, site-preparation, and planting operations. The carbon benefits will begin to accrue when the first tree planting takes place, which is anticipated to occur one year after the project's starting date.

Possible activities to be conducted on restored WETFIX land include low-impact controlled ecotourism, biological education programs, biodiversity prospecting, watershed protection, and research programs.

Actual Project

Primary activity(ies)

This information is not yet available.

Description:

This information is not yet available.

Item

Site Designation

Site number (order of presentation in this report)

2 of 2

Site name/designation

DRYFIX

Project sector

Land-use change and forestry

Reference Scenario

Primary activity(ies)

Marginal agriculture, abandonment of pasture and unused land

Has the reference scenario changed since the last report? (If yes, explain any changes below.)

Yes

No

This is the first project report.

Description:

The DRYFIX portion of the ACG comprises 45,000 ha of abandoned or marginal pasture from which forests have been cleared over the last 100-400 years. The DRYFIX parcels are interspersed throughout an 80,000-ha mosaic of middle-aged to primary dry forest. In the absence of project activities, the DRYFIX portion is expected to remain unchanged, resulting in zero carbon emissions or sequestration.

Predicted Project Scenario

Primary activity(ies)

Reforestation, fire management, anti-poaching operations

Description:

In the project scenario, hardwood species will be planted and allowed to regenerate "semi-naturally" on 9,000 ha of DRYFIX land. When the trees reach marketable size, which is expected to occur after the project has ended, selected harvesting for the manufacture of long-term wood products may occur on a sustainable basis, providing management income for the ACG and increasing the amount of carbon sequestered. On the remaining 36,000 ha of DRYFIX land, natural and semi-natural dry forest within the ACG will be restored using natural regeneration facilitated by anti-poaching and fire control operations. The carbon benefits will begin to accrue when the first tree planting takes place, which is anticipated to occur one year after the project's starting date.

Possible activities to be conducted on restored DRYFIX land include low-impact controlled ecotourism, biological education programs, biodiversity prospecting, watershed protection, and research programs.

Actual Project

Primary activity(ies)

This information is not yet available.

Description:

This information is not yet available.

2. GHG emission/sequestration calculation methodology

GHG Emission/Sequestration Calculation Methodology

Site number

1 of 2

Project sector

Land-use change and forestry

Description of Calculation Methodology for the Reference Scenario


In the reference scenario, marginal cropland, abandoned pasture, or otherwise unused land from which forest has been cleared over the last 100-400 years is expected to remain unchanged. Therefore, the carbon stocks on this land are expected to remain constant and zero net carbon emissions are produced during the lifetime of the project. The project developer estimates that the carbon stocks on this land range from 1-10 metric tonnes (t) of carbon per hectare, and uses the conservative estimate of 10 t C/ha to determine the reference carbon stocks against which project benefits are measured. Therefore, the carbon stocks for the WETFIX reference scenario total 135,000 t C (=10 t C/ha * 13,500 ha).

Description of Calculation Methodology for the Project Scenario


In the project scenario, the project developer calculates the increase in carbon stocks based on (1) estimated carbon stored per hectare in wet tropical forest after 100 years (210 t C/ha); (2) assumptions about the rate at which carbon is sequestered in each decade of the project case, based on academic studies of carbon sequestration in regenerating forest (decade 1=10% of 100-yr total, decade 2=15%, decade 3=20%, decade 4=15%, decade 5=10%); and (3) decadal carbon sequestration, based on the first two assumptions and the (conservative) reference case assumption. Annual carbon sequestration is assumed to be constant within each decade. Carbon sequestration is anticipated to begin one year after the start of operations; therefore, zero carbon sequestration is reported for Year 1 of the project.

Since 210 t C/ha are stored in wet tropical forest after 100 years, and 10 t C/ha are present on the land at the start of the project (as indicated in the reference scenario discussion above), the incremental carbon sequestration on the land totals 200 t C/ha over 100 years. For the first decade of sequestration, 10 percent of this incremental carbon sequestration, or 20 t C/ha, is expected to occur. For each year within this decade, 2 t C/ha-yr (=20 t C/ha ÷ 10 yr) are sequestered. For the total WETFIX project area during this decade, annual carbon sequestration totals 27,000 t C/yr (=2 t C/ha-yr * 13,500 ha). To convert t C to t CO2, the tonnes of annual carbon sequestration are multiplied by the ratio of 44 t CO2/12 t C. These calculations are repeated for each of the four remaining decades, applying the appropriate percentage of incremental carbon sequestration as identified in the preceding paragraph. (Numbers as shown in the following tables may not sum to totals due to rounding.)

Description of Calculation Methodology for the Actual Project


This information is not yet available.

GHG Emission/Sequestration Calculation Methodology

Site number

2 of 2

Project sector

Land-use change and forestry

Description of Calculation Methodology for the Reference Scenario


In the reference scenario, marginal cropland, abandoned pasture, or otherwise unused land from which forest has been cleared over the last 100-400 years is expected to remain unchanged. Therefore, the carbon stocks on this land are expected to remain constant and zero net carbon emissions are produced during the lifetime of the project. The project developer estimates that the carbon stocks on this land range from 1-10 t C/ha, and uses the conservative estimate of 10 t C/ha to determine the reference carbon stocks against which project benefits are measured. Therefore, the carbon stocks for the DRYFIX reference scenario total 450,000 t C (=10 t C/ha * 45,000 ha).

Description of Calculation Methodology for the Project Scenario


In the project scenario, the project developer calculates the increase in carbon stocks based on (1) estimated carbon stored per hectare in dry tropical forest after 100 years (110 t C/ha); (2) assumptions about the rate at which carbon is sequestered in each decade of the project, based on academic studies of carbon sequestration in regenerating forest (decade 1=10% of 100-yr total, decade 2=15%, decade 3=20%, decade 4=15%, decade 5=10%); and (3) decadal carbon sequestration, based on the first two assumptions and the (conservative) reference case assumption. Annual carbon sequestration is assumed to be constant within each decade. Carbon sequestration is anticipated to begin one year after the start of operations; therefore, zero carbon sequestration is reported for Year 1 of the project.

Since 110 t C/ha are stored in dry tropical forest after 100 years, and 10 t C/ha are present on the land at the start of the project (as indicated in the reference scenario discussion above), the incremental carbon sequestration on the land totals 100 t C/ha over 100 years. For the first decade of the project, 10 percent of this incremental carbon sequestration, or 10 t C/ha, is expected to occur. For each year within this decade, 1 t C/ha-yr (=10 t C/ha ÷ 10 yr) is sequestered. For the entire DRYFIX project area during this decade, annual carbon sequestration totals 45,000 t C/yr (=1 t C/ha-yr * 45,000 ha). To convert t C to t CO2, the tonnes of annual carbon sequestration are multiplied by the ratio of 44 t CO2/12 t C. These calculations are repeated for each of the four remaining decades, applying the appropriate percentage of incremental carbon sequestration as identified in the preceding paragraph. (Numbers as shown in the following tables may not sum to totals due to rounding.)

Description of Calculation Methodology for the Actual Project


This information is not yet available.

3. GHG emission/sequestration data

(a) Reporting of GHG emissions/sequestration

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(b) Additional information on GHG emissions/sequestration

Indirect or Secondary GHG Impacts (Positive and Negative)


As is discussed in Section E.2., the project lifetime encompasses 70% of the incremental carbon sequestration that would be expected from the complete restoration of the tropical forest in WETFIX and DRYFIX. The remaining 30% of the incremental carbon sequestration would be expected to occur during the 50 years after the end of the project, assuming that the forest is either protected or sustainably harvested for the manufacture of long-term products. The continued growth of WETFIX and DRYFIX forest, and the associated carbon sequestration, after the end of the project constitutes a secondary GHG benefit.

Factors That Could Cause the Future Loss or Reversal of GHG Benefits


Carbon benefits could be lost or reversed through illegal timber harvesting and/or fire.

According to the project developer, leakage of GHG benefits is not expected because there are few or no demand-based pressures on services, materials, or products currently derived from the lands that would be included in Project BIODIVERSIFIX. Reversion of the project land to cattle pasture is considered unlikely given the strength of Costa Rica's land laws and conservation area designation and the long-depressed markets for beef and cattle pasture.

Strategy for Reducing the Risk of Future Loss or Reversal of GHG Benefits


The anticipated presence of researchers and vegetation managers on the project land as well as anti-poaching operations will result in continuous surveillance that will discourage illegal timber harvesting. Successful fire surveillance and repression operations are already in place for the greater ACG and will be applied to the BIODIVERSIFIX land.

F. Funding of the AIJ project

1. Identification of funding sources

(a) Funding sources for project development

This information is not yet available.

(b) Funding sources for project implementation

This information is not yet available.

2. Assessment of additional funding needs

Current or Planned Activities to Obtain Additional Funding


This information is not yet available.

G. Contribution to capacity building and technology transfer

Contribution to Capacity Building and Technology Transfer


According to the project developer, Project BIODIVERSIFIX will result in increased forest research and public outreach activities by the Horizontes Forest Experiment Station; increase the development of the computerized and GIS-referenced knowledge bases for biodiversity and ecosystem processes of the ACG; and increase the employment, income flow, and intellectual involvement in ACG development of the local and national community.

H. Recent developments, technical difficulties, and obstacles encountered

Recent Project Developments


This information is not yet available.

Technical Difficulties and Other Obstacles Encountered


This information is not yet available.

I. Additional information

Additional Information


None.

J. Annex

1. Host country acceptance of the AIJ project

Country/Project Title

Name, Title, and Government Agency of the Designated National Authority

Date of Approval(day/month/year)

Costa Rica/Project WETFIX and Project DRYFIX

René Castro S., Minister, Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mines

26 July 1995

2. Letters of approval of this AIJ project report

See attached concurrence form.