Provision of accurate carbon (C) measurements and analysis are critical components in
quantification of C stocks. The objectives of this review are to (a) compile and synthesis current
knowledge of available methods for C stock estimation (b) examine socio-economic drivers of
land use and land cover change and their influence on woodland C stocks and (c) identify gaps of
knowledge and methodological inadequacies in understanding factors affecting C stocks of
major C pools namely: aboveground, belowground and soil C pools for miombo woodlands of
Southern Africa. major C pools. We reviewed and evaluated a wide range of literature from peer
reviewed articles. It was evident from the review that quantification of forest C is a challenging
task, mainly associated with knowledge gaps and methodological challenges. This has brought
about a high level of uncertainty and inconsistencies, mainly due to the accounting methods
applied. We emphasise that comprehensive understanding of socio-economic drivers of land use
and land cover change (LULCC) is necessary to ensure better informed sustainable forest management policy direction, strategy and practice to deliver C and livelihood options.
Furthermore, our view suggests that considerations of the inherent spatial heterogeneity of the
landscape and stand density are necessary to ensure development of accurate C estimation
methodologies when developing C models. Notwithstanding, developing widely applicable
biomass models for Southern Africa requires detailed assessments of including different aspects
of wood C fractions.
This review work is part of the ongoing PhD research project.