$100 billion worth of carbon released from deforestation in Riau, Sumatra
mongabay.com
February 28, 2008




A WWF study found that deforestation of nearly 10.5 million acres of tropical forests and peat swamp in central Sumatra's Riau Province over the past 25 years has generated 3.7 gigatons of carbon dioxide. Based on today's $32 closing price for a ton of carbon dioxide for European Union Allowances, the emissions had a theoretical trading value of $118 billion, assuming they could have been traded at the full E.U. carbon price at the time (voluntary offsets would have been worth about $13 billion).

WWF says the emissions are equivalent to 122 percent of the Netherlands' total annual emissions, 58 percent of Australia's annual emissions, 39 percent of annual UK emissions and 26 percent of annual German emissions.

The group says forest clearing in Riau was driven by paper giants Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) and Asia Pacific Resources International Holdings Limited (APRIL). It estimates that about two-thirds of the forest cover in the province has been cleared over the past 25 years.


"The loss of Sumatra's carbon-rich forest ecosystems is not just Indonesia's problem — this affects the environmental health of the entire planet," said Adam Tomasek, managing director of the Borneo and Sumatra program at WWF-US. "This groundbreaking report gives U.S. businesses a roadmap for getting the biggest bang for their buck. An investment in Riau Province would both protect some of the world's largest carbon stores and safeguard endangered tigers, elephants and local communities."

WWF says there has been an 84 percent decline in elephant populations and a 70 percent in the number of Sumatran tigers since 1982.

"WWF is alarmed that the loss of forests is taking such a high toll not only on the remaining wild elephants and tigers in Sumatra but also on global climate change," said Dr Sybille Klenzendorf, director of species conservation at WWF-US. "The message is clear — the world must commit to solutions that can save these forests if we are to significantly slow the rate of climate change and allow nature and people to flourish in Sumatra."

Deforestation, forest degradation, biodiversity loss and CO2 emissions in Riau, Sumatra, Indonesia (PDF)





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CITATION:
mongabay.com (February 27, 2008).

$100 billion worth of carbon released from deforestation in Riau, Sumatra.

http://news.mongabay.com/2008/0228-wwf_sumatra.html