... the global average net affect of human activities since 1750 has been one of warming ...
- IPCC 4th assessment report 2007.
In 1988 an Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established to examine the causes and boundaries of the apparently changing climate. In 1992 at the Rio Earth Summit The Framework Convention on Climate Change was agreed to as the basis for reducing greenhouse gas emissions released into the atmosphere. This was the beginning of what we now know as The Kyoto Protocol.
Recently, the evidence for temperature increases has been revisited by the IPCC indicating disastrous consequences if greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated and we take no action to make major reductions.
Emissions from deforestation in the tropics amount to about 20% of all global carbon emissions. These emissions are equal to the entire commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by all the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol for the life of the commitment period of 2008-20121.
In short, stopping all tropical deforestation will have the same impact on global carbon emissions as all of the combined activities of the Kyoto Protocol.
Preventing deforestation by protecting and rehabilitating rainforests will have an immediate and beneficial impact on combating climate change – the health of our planet depends on it.