Success for the LiDAR mission
A two-engine Cessna equipped with the LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) technology flew over the two largest sites of the programme to measure precisely the height of the forest’s canopy and understory.
Andapa and Fort DauphinSupervised by Greg Asner, Ty Kennedy-Bowdoin and James Jacobson, two engineers from the Carnegie Airborne Observatory (Stanford University) led the mission in Andapa (Moist forest in the North of Madagascar) and Fort Dauphin (moist and spiny forests in the South). They received support from Maminiaina Rasamoelina (WWF) and Romuald Vaudry (GoodPlanet).
Objectives metThe political crisis in Madagascar made the preparations of the mission – and especially all the administrative work – particularly difficult. A few technical problems and sometimes too many clouds on Andapa resulted in slight delays. But, the mission eventually achieved the desired outcomes.
3D data gathered by the team will now be treated and field inventories are to be carried out in the zones covered by the LiDAR. Combined with the development of allometric models, the data will help obtain an accurate estimation of the amount of carbon stored in the above ground biomass.
Results to be presented at CancunFinal results will be presented at the next UN Conference on Climate Change in Cancun (Mexico), in December 2010.
In accordance with its objectives, the HCPF is contributing significantly to improve carbon forestry knowledge in Madagascar, at a time when the country is setting its own policy on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD).
In Fort Dauphin, the LiDAR team also met with the local WWF team and explain them the technology and purpose of the mission.