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Saturday 23.09.2017 | Name days: Vanda, Veneranda, Venija
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Climate change: MEPs support larger role for forests in reducing CO2

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUOn Wednesday, 13 September, members of the European Parliament supported the plan that is aimed to reduce climate change by means of increasing the role of forests in absorbing CO2.

Legislative proposals say that EU member states should compare CO2 emissions from forests, arable land and pastures and improve CO2 absorption. Forests in particular are good at absorbing CO2.

MEPs also believe member states should coordinate CO2 absorption efforts in accordance with EU long-term goals and Paris Climate Treaty.

At the same time, MEPs also note that absorbed CO2 volumes in the first five years will be higher than emissions caused from land use. This surplus will be used later to achieve goals in the next five years.

Products made of wood – construction materials or furniture – also help reduce CO2 volumes by not allowing carbon dioxide absorbed by trees during their lifespan to be released into the atmosphere. By including wood products to regulations, member states will be motivated to increase their use, as mentioned in EP’s report.

It is also noted that member states will have to report on their emission volumes every year in two five-year periods – from 2021 to 2025 and 2026 to 2030 – in order to equalize their CO2 emission and absorption volumes.

«With this regulation, we lay the foundations for a broad recognition and support of our European forests, in order to implement the Paris Agreement. A sustainable management of forests is key. Through this we can achieve both a positive impact on climate change mitigation and a boost for our bio-economy!» says EP rapporteur Norbert Lins.

The report was approved with 532 votes in favour, 144 against and 20 MEPs abstaining from the vote. Now the legislative draft will be returned to the Environment Committee, and EU legislators – EP and EU Council – will be able to commence talks once ministers confirm their position.

There are also multiple facts to consider:

-each country’s goal will be calculated using ‘forest reference level’ estimated annual net emission or absorption by forests on each member state’s territory.

-emissions the state is unable to control (forest fires) can be excluded from estimates.

-use of soil, trees, biomass and wood is included in the use of land use and forestry. It is possible to improve climate policy because it not only creates emission but also secures their absorption. Forests in the EU absorb nearly 10% of greenhouse gas emitted in Europe.

Ref: 225.109.109.5255


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