Elephants, forests and the Wright brothers

Tropical forests are in the news. The Global Canopy Project has announced its Vivocarbon Initiative, an effort to encourage a rapid reduction in the felling of tropical forests. The GCP study forest canopies, and judging from the back page of their Forests First In The Fight Against Climate Change (PDF) describing their new campaign, they have a lot of fun doing it. Their point is simple, and supported by the IPCC WG3, Stern and others:

“Tropical rainforests are the elephant in the living room of climate change. It is unwise for politicians to arm wrestle over rising aircraft emissions when just the next five years of carbon from burning rainforests (20% of global GHG emissions) will be greater than all the emissions from air travel since the Wright brothers to at least 2025. Forests must come first in efforts to mitigate global carbon emissions because carbon capture or nuclear technology will make no major impact on reducing emissions before 2030, whilst we can tackle deforestation now, without the need for inventing new and expensive infrastructure.

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