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COP 13: Intervention by the United States Delegation -- Reducing Emissions from Deforestation in Developing Countries (Agenda Item 5)

Meeting of the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technical Advice
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Reducing Emissions from Deforestation in Developing Countries (Agenda Item 5)

As submitted to UNFCCC Secretariat.

The United States affirms the importance of addressing the role of forests and land-use in existing and future climate change policies. In particular, we recognize that deforestation and forest degradation not only significantly contribute to GHG emissions, but also undermine efforts to sustainably manage forests, deter sustainable development, and reduce resilience to climate change.

Considerable progress was made at our last meeting in developing a draft decision for consideration at this COP. We believe the text offers a good basis for our discussions and submitted detailed comments on the draft to the SBSTA.

We consider it a priority to further explore and improve our understanding of methodological issues. Parties should also be encouraged to explore a variety of approaches and pilot activities that will help identify solutions appropriate for their national circumstances. Countries will be better equipped to develop relevant land-use policies after gaining practical experience. We believe policies and measures that directly address the drivers of deforestation will be most effective in stemming the loss of forests, and their resultant emissions.

Finally, the United States supports a process by which countries and relevant international organizations, such as Australia's important initiative, the FAO, and the World Bank's Forest Carbon Partnership, conduct technical capacity building and pilot activities in this area and inform the SBSTA on these activities.

We look forward to working with others to craft a decision that will encourage action and frame future work in this area.


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