Navigation Links
New climate treaty could put species at risk
Date:11/16/2009

Plans to be discussed at the forthcoming UN climate conference in Copenhagen to cut deforestation in developing countries could save some species from extinction but inadvertently increase the risk to others, scientists believe.

A team of eleven of the world's top tropical forest scientists, coordinated by the University of Leeds, warn that while cutting clearance of carbon-rich tropical forests will help reduce climate change and save species in those forests, governments could risk neglecting other forests that are home to large numbers of endangered species.

Under new UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) proposals, the Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) scheme would curb carbon emissions by financially rewarding tropical countries that reduce deforestation.

Governments implicitly assume that this is a win-win scheme, benefiting climate and species. Tropical forests contain half of all species and half of all carbon stored in terrestrial vegetation, and their destruction accounts for 18% of global carbon emissions.

However, in a paper published in the latest issue of Current Biology, the scientists warn that if REDD focuses solely on protecting forests with the greatest density of carbon, some biodiversity may be sacrificed.

"Concentrations of carbon density and biodiversity in tropical forests only partially overlap," said Dr Alan Grainger of the University of Leeds, joint leader of the international team. "We are concerned that governments will focus on cutting deforestation in the most carbon-rich forests, only for clearance pressures to shift to other high biodiversity forests which are not given priority for protection because they are low in carbon."

"If personnel and funds are switched from existing conservation areas they too could be at risk, and this would make matters even worse."

If REDD is linked to carbon markets then biodiversity hotspot areas home to endemic species most at risk of extinction as their habitats are shrinking rapidly could be at an additional disadvantage, because of the higher costs of protecting them.

According to early estimates up to 50% of tropical biodiversity hotspot areas could be excluded from REDD for these reasons. Urgent research is being carried out across the world to refine these estimates.

Fortunately, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change is still negotiating the design of REDD and how it is to be implemented.

The team is calling for rules to protect biodiversity to be included in the text of the Copenhagen Agreement. It also recommends that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change give greater priority to studying this issue, and to producing a manual to demonstrate how to co-manage ecosystems for carbon and biodiversity services.

"Despite the best of intentions, mistakes can easily happen because of poor design" said Dr Grainger. "Clearing tropical forests to increase biofuel production to combat climate change is a good example of this. Governments still have time at Copenhagen to add rules to REDD to ensure that it does not make a similar mistake. A well designed REDD can save many species and in our paper we show how this can be done."


'/>"/>

Contact: Clare Ryan
c.s.ryan@leeds.ac.uk
44-113-343-4031
University of Leeds
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. AAAS exhibit featuring photographs of climate change opens Nov. 18
2. Avoiding dangerous climate change: Is geo-engineering the answer?
3. Ethiopias climate 27 million years ago had higher rainfall, warmer soil
4. UD to host conference on Ethics of Climate Change
5. Television has less effect on education about climate change than other forms of media
6. Panama butterfly migrations linked to El Nio, climate change
7. Do dust particles curb climate change?
8. Panama butterfly migrations linked to El Niño, climate change
9. Climate change meets ocean life in new northeast research institute
10. Stimulus-funded university research addressing issues from climate change to cancer, creating jobs and training a new generation of scientists
11. University of Basque Country research study on effects of climate on plankton in the estuaries
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/6/2017)... Forecasts by Product Type (EAC), Biometrics, Card-Based ... & Logistics, Government & Public Sector, Utilities / Energy ... Nuclear Power), Industrial, Retail, Business Organisation (BFSI), Hospitality & ... for a definitive report on the $27.9bn Access Control ... ...
(Date:4/3/2017)... , April 3, 2017  Data ... precision engineering platform, detected a statistically significant ... product prior to treatment and objective response ... the potential to predict whether cancer patients ... to treatment, as well as to improve ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... , March 28, 2017 ... Biometrics), Hardware (Camera, Monitors, Servers, Storage Devices), Software (Video ... and Region - Global Forecast to 2022", published by ... in 2016 and is projected to reach USD 75.64 ... 2017 and 2022. The base year considered for the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/21/2017)... ... September 21, 2017 , ... Dr. Greg Leyer, Chief Scientific Officer of UAS ... His presentation is at 12:10pm in the Probiotics Resource Center, Mandalay Bay Expo Hall. ... and discuss how probiotics have shown impressive data in areas outside the gut including ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... New Jersey (PRWEB) , ... September 21, 2017 ... ... highly-regulated pharmaceutical and clinical research sector professionals, has announced the addition of 5 ... Part 11 training - Compliance with Regulation 21 CFR Part 11 on ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... ... September 20, 2017 , ... The award-winning ... Services (Koch) to feature new innovations aimed at helping farmers solve the problem ... American Farmer airs Tuesdays at 8:30aET on RFD-TV. Check your local listings for ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... September 20, 2017 , ... ... pathology, and Huron Digital Pathology , a provider of whole slide imaging ... Pathology Visions conference . The workshop, entitled “Successfully Deploying a Best-in-Class Strategy for ...
Breaking Biology Technology: