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Study underlines importance of Congo Basin for global climate and biodiversity

With its 1.7 billion square kilometres, an area equivalent to 5 times the size of Germany, the Congo Basin forest is the world's second largest tropical forest. The 'State of the Congo Basin Forests 2010' report launched in Douala, Cameroon, at the Annual meeting of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP), provides a comprehensive and detailed assessment of the status of this crucial pool for climate regulation and natural resources. It looks at deforestation patterns, points to trends in sustainable forest management and highlights threats to biodiversity.

The Congo Basin, which spans over six countries (Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon), contains 25% of the total carbon stored in tropical rainforests worldwide. The report explains the important role the Central African countries can have in future climate conventions and in particular in the negotiations on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD). The low deforestation rates measured here with satellite imagery (0.1% per year for the period 1990-2000 and 0.2% per year for the period 2000-2005) are far below those observed in Latin America and in Southeast Asia and make the Congo Basin a possible role model for other tropical forest regions. Read more

TAGGED: CLIMATE, EARTH SCIENCES


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