Spain: Optimal management of forests best option for reducing CO2 emissions
Conference on Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Madrid Teresa Ribera stresses that the forestry sector constitutes a fundamental tool in the fight against climate change.
At the official opening ceremony of the Conference entitled "Reducing Emissions from Deforestation: a social, economic and environmental mechanism" organised by the Official Association of Forestry Engineers, the State Secretary for Climate Change, Teresa Ribera, stressed that the forestry sector has a great deal to offer in terms of the fight against climate change.
Every year, deforestation results in the loss of 13 million hectares of woodland, meaning that almost 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions come from the forestry sector. It is a highly important sector in the solution to global warming because of its capacity for carbon capture and reducing soil erosion, said the State Secretary for Climate Change.
Besides the role played by woodland areas in offsetting the effects of greenhouse gas emissions, timber products help reduce emissions from the production of the materials they replace. As do other sectors, the forestry sector generates employment and wealth but, unlike the rest, the forestry sector also contributes to biodiversity and the reduction of erosion. Teresa Ribera added that woodland areas play an important role in global adaptation to climate change, helping the hydrological cycle and the prevention of fires.
Teresa Ribera pointed out that the Copenhagen Accord recognised the key role played by woodland areas in offsetting climate change and decided to immediately establish a Deforestation and Forest Degradation mechanism (REDD+), with an economic contribution from the developed countries of 30,000 million dollars for initial financing (2010-2012), as well as from the Copenhagen Green Climate Fund to support various actions, including REDD+ projects.
Ahead of the climate conference in Cancun, Teresa Ribera stated that REDD+ represents one of the areas in which international consensus is most advanced.
The State Secretary for Climate Change recalled that Spain has been investing in various funds for many years now, including the World Bank Biocarbon Fund, the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility and the Forma Project for forestation and reforestation training under the Clean Development Mechanism in Latin America, among others, and she also highlighted Spain's commitment to allocating 20% of Stara resources (initial financing) to this sector, thus contributing towards the consolidation of related skills in developing countries.
Finally, she concluded by saying that planning and good forestry management are key to the fight against climate change, not only at a local level but clearly at an international level.