Biofuels and Carbon Credits Behind Global Deforestation

Biofuels Boom Spurring Deforestation
By Stephen Leahy

Mar 21 (IPS/IFEJ) – Nearly 40,000 hectares of forest vanish every day, driven by the world’s growing hunger for timber, pulp and paper, and ironically, new biofuels and carbon credits designed to protect the environment.

Sugarcane field Queensland Australia Copyright Renate Leahy 2004The irony here is that the growing eagerness to slow climate change by using biofuels and planting millions of trees for carbon credits has resulted in new major causes of deforestation, say activists. And that is making climate change worse because deforestation puts far more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than the entire world’s fleet of cars, trucks, planes, trains and ships combined.

“Biofuels are rapidly becoming the main cause of deforestation in countries like Indonesia, Malaysia and Brazil,” said Simone Lovera, managing coordinator of the Global Forest Coalition, an environmental NGO based in AsunciĆ³n, Paraguay. Continue reading