Forest conservation offers global solutions and benefits to nature, communities and economies.
Forest carbon provisions will play a critical role in reducing emissions cost-effectively and sequestering carbon. U.S. legislation should:
- Support the role of a market-based system that puts a price on carbon to reduce the roughly 15 percent of total emissions caused by deforestation;
- Support forest and ecosystem restoration to maximize natural lands’ ability to absorb carbon from the atmosphere; and
- Provide funding for market readiness, so that developing countries can participate in carbon markets.
Credits from projects that engage in reforestation, sustainable management of forests and forest conservation that have been independently verified as being real, permanent, and measurable should be allowed into U.S. and international carbon markets.
Linking Emerging Markets
By including strong provisions to allow participants in a U.S. market-based system to access international forest carbon credits, U.S. climate policy will create incentives for developing countries to limit their carbon emissions.
Access to U.S. carbon markets is strong motivation for participation by emerging economies. Linking our carbon markets to developing nations through policies to reduce emissions from deforestation and degradation is a triple-win proposition. It has the potential to:
- Unleash tens of billions of dollars to save the world’s forests and their biodiversity;
- Help contain the costs of U.S. climate policy for U.S. companies; and
- Improve the quality of life for local communities around the world.
However, developing countries will need to put in place key building blocks — such as monitoring systems, and capable enforcement institutions — that will enable them to participate successfully in carbon market activities.
With conservation projects around the world informing our decisions and policy positions, The Nature Conservancy believes that international action is essential to meet the climate challenge and U.S. leadership is integral to motivating other countries to engage in solutions.
International engagement and linkages increase economic efficiency by increasing the capacity for emission reductions from a diversity of sectors and nations, further encouraging broad political engagement.