SilvaCarbon’s second regional workshop for Central America

SilvaCarbon held its second regional workshop for Central American countries in Costa Rica from 30 January to 3 February 2017. The workshop focused on methods for forest biomass estimation and forest cover mapping in the tropics.

This workshop reviewed methodologies associated with different sources of remote sensing data that can be used for biomass estimation, such as Landsat , SAR, and LiDAR data. It also reviewing some of the critical issues associated with biomass estimation, such as field data analysis, the use of suitable algorithms, uncertainty analysis and the application of biomass models. There were two parts to the workshop: a two-day meeting to review and discuss existing methods of biomass estimation, followed by a three-day field visit to gain field experience in a variety of biomass intensity settings.

For more information, please see the full report here.

SilvaCarbon WS

GFOI Plenary 2017: Invitation, Venue and Accommodation

GFOI Plenary 2015, Sydney.

GFOI Plenary 2015, Sydney.

Date & Location

The GFOI Plenary 2017 will be held in Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam, from 9-12 April, at the New World Hotel.

Invitation & Permit

A formal invitation from the FAO Representative to Viet Nam is now available.


The final agenda is now available. The open plenary sessions will be held on 11 and 12 April, with an additional open training session scheduled for the afternoon of Monday 10 April. Invitations for other events on 9 and 10 April will be issued separately.

Visa applications

All participants are responsible for ensuring that they can enter Viet Nam and where necessary obtain a visa in advance of travelling. The invitation letter and workshop permit can be used to support visa applications. We strongly recommend that you confirm your own requirements to enter Viet Nam and if necessary apply for a visa asap . Please note that ASEAN nationals are exempt from short‐term visas for entering Viet Nam. For more information, please see here or contact your local embassy, consulate or travel/visa agent.

Logistics note

To support participation in next week’s event, a logistics note that includes important on the ground information has been prepared.


Accommodation is available at the venue (New World Hotel hotel). Participants are be responsible for making their own reservations. A special corporate rate is available for participants who book through Thien Ha Travel & Convention Centre. Please see the reservation form for more information on booking through this service and note that payment will be issued to the Thien Ha Travel company and not the hotel. Alternatively, participants are welcome to contact the hotel directly or make reservations through travel agents or online booking services. Please note that accommodation is limited and it is a busy time of year in Viet Nam, so we suggest you make your reservations asap.


We are pleased to announce that there is overwhelming interest in the Plenary this year. So much so that we have now reached capacity and registration has been closed.
Additional information will be sent in the coming weeks. In the meantime, if you have any questions or clarifications please feel free to get in touch with the GFOI Office – .

GFOI Plenary 2016, Frascati, Italy.

GFOI Plenary 2016, Frascati, Italy.

New REDD+ capacity building initiative from FAO, UN-REDD, GFOI and the University of Melbourne


The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) the United Nations Collaborative Programme on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+) in developing countries (UN-REDD) and the Global Forest Observations Initiative (GFOI) in collaboration with the University of Melbourne are pleased to announce the launch of a new REDD+ capacity building initiative.

The initiative will focus on National Forest Monitoring Systems (NFMS) and Measurement, Reporting and Verification (MRV) for REDD+ building on existing technical guidance from FAO, UN-REDD, and GFOI (Methods and Guidance Document and REDDCompass) and and the expertise of technical partners in an intensive two-week course as a module of the Master of Forest Ecosystem Science of the University of Melbourne, Australia.

Key technical topics will include:

  • UNFCCC decisions on MRV and the Warsaw Framework for REDD+,
  • The IPCC and Greenhouse Gas Inventories (GHGi),
  • National Forest Monitoring Systems (NFMS),
  • Forest Reference (Emission) Levels (FREL/FRL),
  • REDD+ results reporting,
  • National Forest Inventory (NFI),
  • Satellite Land Monitoring Systems (SLMS).

The initiative’s first course will be for Pacific countries# from 28 November to 9 December 2016 at the Creswick Campus of the School of Ecosystem and Forest Sciences of the University of Melbourne. Government nominations are required before 30th September, 2016 to enable travel arrangements. Course and travel expenses will be covered by FAO with financial support from UN-REDD, GFOI, and the Australian Government.

Subject to the successful completion of this first short course, it may be replicated in other regions. Other partners are invited to contribute and expressions of interest can be sent to the contact persons below.

Julian Fox, FAO, Tom Harvey, GFOI Office, and Chris Weston, University of Melbourne.

First GFOI Forest Monitoring Workshop in Africa

A workshop on Data Interoperability for Forest Monitoring was held in Douala, Cameroon June2-6, 2014. This first regional technical GFOI-SilvaCarbon workshop on forest monitoring had the overall aim of supporting participating countries to continue to develop their data plans for country needs in the context of REDD+. Different data sets were presented and the use of different remote sensing data and their interoperability to create biomass estimations was discussed.

COMIFAC, the regional Forestry Commission for Central Africa, has a mandate to coordinate and harmonize forest interventions across the Congo Basin, including forest carbon measurement and monitoring. As such, in collaboration with GFOI and SilvaCarbon, COMIFAC is well placed to co-host the first GFOI-SilvaCarbon regional workshop in the sub-region, expanding the capacity building exercise to all COMIFAC member countries.

Details can be found here.

GFOI SE Asia Capacity Building

The first regional technical GFOI workshop on forest monitoring in Southeast Asia was successfully held in Chiangmai, Thailand on January 27 to 30, 2014. The overall aim was to support participating countries in developing data plans for their country needs in the context of REDD+. It is the first in a series SE Asian Workshops. More details can be found here.