INPE-EM: Land cover changes greenhouse gases (GHG) emission estimate

The INPE-EM system (INPE – Emission Model) is a service of the National Institute of Space Research (INPE) that aims to make available annual estimates of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by land cover changes in Brazil in a spatial way explicit. The system, which provides annual emission estimates for the Brazilian Amazon based on data from the PRODES system data since 2012, now includes the emission estimates for the Cerrado based on data from the Prodes Cerrado System.

Estimates are available of 1st Order (assuming the simplification that 100% of the emissions occur at the time of the land cover change) and 2nd Order (which represent the gradual process of liberation and carbon absorption as occurs in fact).

The 2nd Order emissions estimates have an attenuated response in relation to deforestation rate fluctuations (rises and falls), as they carry the influence of historical emissions, i.e. the processes of decomposition/burning of the remaining biomass of deforestation occurred in the years before. Estimates of 2nd Order represent the emission process with greater accuracy and scientific basis. The 1st Order estimates are typically used to report emissions in a simple and intuitive way.


The net emissions estimates combine the emissions derived from the primary forest shallow cutting process to the secondary vegetation growth / cutting dynamics. These results indicate the influence of secondary vegetation growth on the carbon balance. Currently only gross emissions are being made available for Cerrado due to data limitations.

The information is made available annually and also in a spatially disaggregated way. Tables and maps are available for download in excel and shapefile format. In addition to the annual CO2 estimates, INPE-EM also presents the emission estimates of CH4, N2O, CO and NOx.

For compatibility with official estimates of the Brazilian Government emissions, from now on the system will use the biomass data produced for the Brazilian Communications to the UNFCCC, as well as for the purpose of emission reduction estimates (REDD+).

INPE-EM 3.1 presents a first attempt to estimate greenhouse emissions due to forest degradation. This new component implements 1st Order emissions (supposes that 100% of the emissions occur at the time of degradation).