Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Logo
Monday, October 15, 2018 08:13:02 PM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Let's plant more trees to combat climate change

By
29th-Nov-2017       
Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all () »

Justin Adams  :
In response to climate change, land is key. Today, agriculture, forestry, and other land uses account for roughly a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions. But adopting sustainable land management strategies could provide more than one-third of the near-term emission reductions needed to keep warming well below the target - 2°C above pre-industrial levels - set by the Paris climate agreement.
Conservation organisations like mine have long been working to balance the interaction between people and nature. But only recently have we fully grasped just how important land-use management is in addressing climate change. With the development of remote sensing, artificial intelligence, and biogeochemical modelling, we can better forecast outcomes, and develop strategies to manage and minimise adverse consequences.
Some of the most promising ways to mitigate climate change are what we call "natural climate solutions": the conservation, restoration, and improved management of land, in order to increase carbon storage or avoid greenhouse-gas emissions in landscapes worldwide.
Among the most important natural climate solutions is protecting "frontier forests" - pristine woodlands that serve as natural carbon sinks. Intact tropical and northern forests, as well as savannas and coastal ecosystems, store huge amounts of carbon accumulated over centuries. When these areas are disturbed, carbon is released. Preservation of frontier habitats also helps regulate water flows, reduces the risk of flooding, and maintains biodiversity.
Reforestation is another important natural solution. Globally, an estimated two billion hectares (4.9 billion acres) of land has been deforested or degraded. Because trees are the best carbon-capture-and-storage technology the world has, reversing these numbers would bring a significant reduction in global carbon levels. We estimate that the world could capture three gigatons of CO2 annually - equivalent to taking more than 600 million cars off the roads - simply by planting more trees.
A third category of natural solution is agricultural reform. From field to fork, the food sector is a major contributor to climate change through direct and indirect emissions, and by its often-negative effects on soil health and deforestation. Recognising these risks, 23 global companies - including Nestlé, McDonald's, Tesco, and Unilever - recently signed a commitment to halt deforestation in Brazil's Cerrado savanna. The region, which covers a quarter of the country, has come under growing pressure from production of beef, soy, and other commodities, together with the associated infrastructure.
As the Cerrado pledge demonstrates, when governments and businesses come together to address land-use challenges, the impact is potent. Natural climate solutions have the potential to reduce CO2 emissions by an estimated 11.3 billion tonnes a year - equal to a complete halt in burning oil, according to our study. One recent study calculated that if Brazil reached zero deforestation by 2030, it would add 0.6 per cent of GDP, or about $15 billion, to its economy. Communities also reap secondary benefits - such as rural regeneration, improved food and water security, and coastal resilience - when natural climate solutions are implemented.
Yet, despite the data supporting better land-use decision-making, something isn't adding up. In 2016, the world witnessed a dramatic 51 per cent increase in forest loss, equivalent to an area about the size of New Zealand. We need to buck this trend now, and help the world realise that land-use planning is not simply a conservation story.
Some countries are moving in the right direction. The Indian government, for example, has set aside $6 billion for states to invest in forest restoration. In Indonesia, the government created a dedicated agency to protect and restore peatlands, bogs, and swamp-like ecosystems that have immense CO2 storage capabilities.
But they are the exceptions. Of the 160 countries that committed to implementing the Paris climate agreement, only 36 have specified land-use management in their emissions-reduction strategies.
Overcoming inertia will not be easy. Forests, farms, and coasts vary in size, type, and accessibility. Moreover, the lives of hundreds of millions of people are tied to these ecosystems, and projects that restore forest cover or improve soil health require focused planning, a massive undertaking for many governments.
One way to get things moving, especially in the agricultural sector, would be to remove or redirect subsidies that encourage excessive consumption of fertilizers, water, or energy in food production. As Indian government officials reminded their peers during a World Trade Organisation meeting earlier this year, meaningful agricultural reforms can begin only when rich countries reduce the "disproportionately large" subsidies they give their own farmers.
Supporting innovation and entrepreneurship can also help power change. New processes and technologies in landscape planning, soil analysis, irrigation, and even alternative proteins such as plant-based meat are making agriculture and land use more sustainable. Similarly, changes in the construction industry, which is turning to more efficiently produced products like cross-laminated timber (CLT), can help reduce carbon pollution.
Finally, financing options for natural climate solutions must be dramatically increased. While payments to conserve forests are starting to flow under the UN's REDD+ programme, and the Green Climate Fund has committed $500 million for forest protection payments, total public investment in sustainable land use remains inadequate. According to the Climate Policy Initiative, public financing for agriculture, forestry, and land-use mitigation attracted just $3 billion in 2014, compared to $49 billion for renewable energy generation and $26 billion for energy efficiency.
At the UN climate change meeting that just concluded in Bonn, Germany, global leaders reaffirmed that the world cannot respond adequately to rising temperatures if governments continue ignoring how forests, farms, and coasts are managed. Now that there is a firm consensus, governments must act on it. - Project Syndicate
(Justin Adams is Global Managing Director for Lands at the Nature Conservancy).

Tariff
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

Editorial »

Take seriously the promise made to the editors


The Editors' Council will form a human chain in front of the National Press Club today (Monday) to press for amendments to nine sections of the Digital Security Act. Earlier, the Council postponed the same program following an assurance from three ministers including the information minister Hasanul Haq Inu that ...

Sports »

Marcelo Melo of Brazil (left) and his partner Lukasz Kubot of Poland bite their winning trophy as they pose for photographers after beating Jamie Murray of Britain and Bruno Shares of Brazil in the men's doubles final match of the Shanghai Masters tennis tournament at Qizhong Forest Sports City Tennis Center in Shanghai, China on Sunday.


International »

Trump explains `eligibility` for those who want to come to US


PTI, Washington :US President Donald Trump has said that he wants people with merit, who can help, to enter the country and not sneak inside the border illegally."I'm very tough at the borders. We've been very tough at the borders. People have to come into our country legally, not illegally. ...

International »

US wants ‘regime change’ in Iran: Rouhani


Reuters, Tehran :The United States is seeking "regime change" in Iran, President Hassan Rouhani said on Sunday, adding that the current US administration is the most hostile that the Islamic Republic has faced in its four decades.Tensions have increased between Iran and America after US President Donald Trump withdrew from ...

City »

Former adviser to the caretaker government Dr Hossain Zillur Rahman addressing a press conference on the occasion of 4th International Health Conference of People's Health organised by People's Health Movement- Bangladesh at VIP Lounge , Jatiya Press Club yesterday.


Entertainment »

Nadia in new telefilm


Entertainment Report :After returning country popular TV actress and model Nadia Ahmed has acted in a new telefilm titled Debor, which is based on a life-oriented story. Written by Barrister Mostaq Ahmed, the telefilm is directed by Sanjay Barua. The shooting of the telefilm has already been done in the ...

Editorial »

Mysterious disappearance of Saudi journalist Khashoggi


MYSTERY shrouds the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi when Turkish authorities didn't revoke their claim that he was killed inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul amid strong denials by the Saudi government. The Turkish newspaper "Sabah" yesterday reported that Khashoggi may have recorded his own death by his Apple Watch. ...

Sports »

Danielle Kang of the United States reacts on the 18th hole after finishing the third round of the LPGA KEB Hana Bank Championship at Sky72 Golf Club in Incheon, South Korea on Saturday.


.

City »

General students holds a rally making token execution platform in front of the Jatiya Press Club on Saturday demanding 35 years as minimum age-limit for the government service.


.

Entertainment »

Shakib`s new film `Ektu Prem Dorkar`


Showtime Desk :Shakib Khan's upcoming film has been finally named "Ektu Prem Dorkar," after changing the title twice.The film, directed by Shahin Sumon and produced by Shapla Media, was originally titled "Ektu Prem Dorkar Manoniyo Sarkar." The name was then changed to "Culprit." However, on Monday the director informed that ...

Entertainment »

Sarah Paulson to star in Lionsgate`s Run


Natalie Qasabian and Sev Ohanian are handling the production of the film, which is being directed by Aneesh Chaganty.  It is the next project from the creative team behind Searching, reports Variety. The Ocean’s 8 actor will be seen portraying the role of a mother of a teenage girl, who ...

Editorial »

E. coli bacteria found in 41pc water sources : Govt must provide urgent action to upgrade quality


FORTYone percent of all improved water sources in Bangladesh are contaminated with Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria, which suggests a high prevalence of fecal contamination. The nation can reduce poverty and boost growth by taking immediate measures to upgrade the quality of water and sanitation, a World Bank report said.The ...

Sports »

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry shoots around Los Angeles Lakers center JaVale McGee during the second half of an NBA preseason basketball game in Las Vegas on Wednesday.


Football »

Mbappe is Time magazine's 'Future of Soccer'


AFP, Paris :Paris Saint-Germain striker Kylian Mbappe's rapid rise to global fame has earned the teenaged World Cup winner an appearance on the cover of Time magazine's international edition, to appear on Friday.Time said Mbappe is a global superstar who is the "Future of Soccer."Mbappe made headlines in September 2017 ...

International »

Riyadh faces `serious consequences` if Khashoggi murder claims true: UK


A FP,  London  :Britain's foreign secretary on Thursday warned that Saudi Arabia faces "serious consequences" if the suspicions of Turkish officials that journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul turn out to be true."People who have long thought of themselves as Saudi's friends are saying ...

 
Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
 
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Email:
Write a comment to this news