NEW YORK (MAY 21, 2009) - The
Wildlife Conservation Society applauds U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA)
and U.S. Rep. Edward Markey (D-MA) of the House Energy and Commerce
Committee for including provisions on forestry preservation in the
American Clean Energy and Security Act.
The provisions call for
action to avoid the burning or cutting down of the world’s forests.
Deforestation results in one-fifth of total greenhouse gas emissions –
more than all the world’s cars, trucks, planes and ships combined, and,
destroys the ecosystems that both animals – many endangered -- and
people rely on for their survival.
WCS Executive Vice President
of Public Affairs John Calvelli said, “We praise U.S. Reps. Henry
Waxman and Edward Markey for their leadership in including provisions
to protect tropical forests in the groundbreaking American Clean Energy
and Security Act. With 20% of annual global emissions resulting from
tropical deforestation in developing countries, these provisions are a
critical component to comprehensive climate change legislation.”
Wildlife Conservation Society has a long history in the area of forest
conservation and policy. Currently, WCS is helping countries around the
world, in places like Cambodia, Chile, Bolivia, and Madagascar, protect
their carbon resource interests while they combat climate change. While
many such countries contain biological richness, indigenous peoples
often live in poverty. Decades of deforestation—much of which has
occurred to support small-scale and unsustainable subsistence
farming—has left them with a small fraction of their original forests.
carbon crediting is being used successfully in some of these places now
- creating carbon-based revenue streams that provide an economic
alternative to degrading and cutting forests. This system not only
mitigates climate change but also protects the current and long-term
interests of the local communities and the unique wildlife like tigers,
gorillas, and jaguars that directly depends upon the forest for
survival. The forestry provisions allow for the sale of carbon credits
generated by forest protection and avoided deforestation in developing
countries, to U.S. companies looking to offset their carbon emissions.
The Wildlife Conservation Society
saves wildlife and wild places worldwide. We do so through science,
global conservation, education and the management of the world's
largest system of urban wildlife parks, led by the flagship Bronx Zoo.
Together these activities change attitudes towards nature and help
people imagine wildlife and humans living in harmony. WCS is committed
to this mission because it is essential to the integrity of life on
Earth. Visit: www.wcs.org
Special Note to the Media: If
you would like to guide your readers or viewers to a web link where
they can make donations in support of helping save wildlife and wild
places, please direct them to: www.wcs.org/donation
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