Sunday, January 20, 2008

Norway presents: green vision and inspiring goals

Today I would like to praise Norway. Not only that it announced last week on a bold target of becoming carbon neutral by 2030, but it also becomes one of the biggest supporters of forests' protection.

The Norwegian government announced last Thursday on a new target of becoming carbon neutral by 2030, 20 years earlier than previously planned.

How will Norway get there? well, according to their plans, up to two-thirds of the emissions cuts will be made domestically and the other third will be offset by investing around 3 billion crowns ($553.1 million) per year to combat deforestation in developing countries (carbon credits).

I wrote here before about Norway's support of protecting forests as a tool to fight global warming. Norway announced its willingness to contribute about $500 million a year to projects aimed at protecting forests in developing countries at the U.N. climate conference last month In Bali. In this conference, as ENN reminds us, it was agreed to launch pilot projects to grant poor countries credits for slowing deforestation under a new long-term climate pact beyond 2012.

Now Norway is reinforcing its commitment - according to ENN, Norway's prime minister on Friday, a day after Norway set the new goal that "protecting forests and burying greenhouse gases are key ways of slowing world climate change."

So, I think Norway deserves kudos for three reasons:

1. Becoming carbon neutral by 2030 is a bold move and it's great to see a country that has the guts to do it and become a role model to all the other countries, especially the developed ones.

2. It's important that most of the CO2 reductions are based on cutting the total emissions by two-thirds domestically and only one third is based on carbon credits. This is a good balance that shows a real commitment to take steps and change what needs to be changed (although it's still very vague how these cuts will be made).

3. I'm happy to see that the carbon credits will be focused on protecting forests in developing countries. Deforestation accounts for about 20 percent of total greenhouse gases, and I think that protection of forests can definitely become an efficient and valuable tool in the fight against global warming. And not tom mention all the other environmental and social benefits that these forests have. It's good that these forests has a powerful reach ally such as Norway - they need it!

I hope to see many countries follow Norway. It's not only their future. It's our future.

Raz @ Eco-Libris

Eco-Libris: plant a tree for every book you read!