This paper presents an overview of the role of remote sensing technology in the context of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Kyoto Protocol and is based largely on discussions held at an international workshop in MI, USA, and the report that followed [A. Rosenqvist, M. Imhoff, T. Milne, C. Dobson (Eds.), Remote Sensing and the Kyoto Protocol: A Review of Available and Future Technology for Monitoring Treaty Compliance, Workshop Report, Ann Arbor, MI, USA, 20–22 October 1999, 2000a, 159 pp. Available at http://www.eecs.umich.edu/kyoto]. The implications of signiﬁcant decisions pertaining to the deﬁnition of the key terms forest and afforestation, reforestation and deforestation (ARD) activities taken at the conference of parties (COP 6:2 and COP 7) meetings in Bonn and Marrakesh, respectively in 2001 are also discussed. Past, current and near-future remote sensing instruments with applications appropriate to Kyoto requirements are short listed; research topics that need to be advanced to support use of these are outlined, and future actions recommended.