February 28, 2007
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Global Climate Change Digest
A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999
FROM VOLUME 2, NUMBER 8, AUGUST 1989
The World Resources Institute has completed a
report on the strategy of planting trees to counter greenhouse warming from
carbon released to the atmosphere by fossil fuel combustion. (See REPORTS/CARBON
SEQUESTRATION, this Global Climate Change Digest issue--August 1989.)
The study represents the Institute's role in a program announced last fall
whereby an independent U.S. electric power utility (a subsidiary of Applied
Energy Services of Arlington, Virginia) will spend $2 million to plant trees in
Guatemala. Carbon dioxide absorbed by the growing trees is expected to offset
the carbon emissions from an 80 megawatt coal-fired plant the firm will build in
Connecticut. The grant will be made to the international organization CARE,
which will work with the Guatemalan forestry service and the Peace Corps on
forest management and soil conservation and will help 40,000 farmers plant 52
million trees on small plots over a 10-year period. CARE will provide another $2
million in funds. For a discussion of this project and current views on this
approach to offsetting global warming see "CO2: How Will We Spell Relief?"
(J. Raloff, Science News, pp. 411, 414, Dec. 24/31, 1988) and "To
Halt Climate Change, Scientists Try Trees" (W.K. Stevens, New York
Times, pp. C1, C6, July 18, 1989).
Following are recent news items related to tropical forest preservation:
"Europe Council Unanimously Approves Tropical Forest Preservation
Program," Intl. Environ. Rptr., p. 318, June 1989. The 23-member
nations of the Council of Europe voted to give priority to preserving tropical
forests in the council's development aid program and made related
recommendations. An Austrian amendment to cut tropical forest timber exports by
90 percent was not approved.
"Nations Agree to Save Tropical Forests...," ibid., pp.
318-319. The International Tropical Timber Organization adopted only eight of
the 21 points in a proposed action plan for tropical forests at its May annual
meeting in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. Environmental groups such as Worldwide Fund for
Nature will push for firmer action next year.
"Japan No Help to Rain Forests," D. Swinbanks, Nature, p.
606, April 1989. A report on the tropical timber trade released by the Worldwide
Fund for Nature severely criticizes the management of Japan's overseas
development assistance, and makes suggestions for improvement in environmental
"Brazil Reacts Angrily," Greenhouse Effect Report, p. 19,
Mar. 1989. Apparently responding to pressure by the military, President Jose
Sarne of Brazil backed off on his commitment to stem deforestation in Amazonia,
and declined to attend the March 10, 1989, conference in the Hague on the world
"Japan and Brazil Team Up," D. Swinbanks, A. Anderson, Nature,
p. 103, Mar. 9, 1989. Japan intends to build a road linking the upper reaches of
the Amazon basin with the Pacific coast of Peru, opening large areas of forest
to exploitation. Senator Robert Kasten of Wisconsin has introduced legislation
calling for the Secretary of State to oppose the plan.
"Dispute Grows over Malaysia's Forests," M. Cross, New
Scientist, p. 27, Feb. 4, 1989. The Thai government banned commercial
logging after illegal logging caused flash floods that killed 350 villagers last
November; Sarawak on the island of Borneo passed a new law intended to crush
opposition to intense logging there.
"More Funds for Forest Research," C. McGourty, Nature, p.
511, Dec. 8, 1988. Bilateral and multilateral donors, development banks,
non-governmental organizations and researchers meeting near London, concerned
about deforestation and environmental degradation, adopted most recommendations
of the report of an international task force on tropical forestry research,
including doubling funds to $100 million annually.
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Index of Abbreviations