Norway is intensifying its efforts to combat climate change and deforestation and is proposing an extra allocation in the 2008 Revised National Budget for this purpose.
“We propose an additional allocation of NOK 225 million for reducing deforestation in developing countries. This would bring our total allocation for these efforts up to NOK 400 million for this year,” said Minister of the Environment and International Development Erik Solheim.
Partnership on Deforestation Efforts with Tanzania
The first partnership agreement on deforestation efforts was concluded with Tanzania in April during the visit of Norway’s Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg to the country. Stoltenberg announced that Norway is prepared to grant NOK 500 million to Tanzania over the next five years, for a partnership agreement to enhance forest and climate efforts.
At the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bali in December 2007 new guidelines for pilot projects against deforestation were negotiated under Norway’s leadership. The new partnership between Norway and Tanzania represents one of the first of its kind since the Bali conference.
Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg and Minister of the Environment and International Development Erik Solheim visiting Ruvu Forest Reserve in Tanzania. Photo: MFA
Towards a New International Climate Agreement
The primary aim of Norway’s deforestation efforts is to reduce large-scale emissions. Establishing good measurement and working methods is essential for the success of these efforts. Norway will therefore help to build expertise and develop such methods in preparation for future negotiations on climate agreements in the UN.
Experience from such a partnership as the one with Tanzania will also be a vital contribution in the process towards a new international climate agreement. “One condition will be that we succeed in finding good and standardized measuring methods. A vital element in Norway’s forest campaign will thus be to contribute to competence building and the development of measuring methods for deforestation,” said Prime Minister Stoltenberg when announcing the partnership agreement in Dar es Salaam.
Pilot Areas for Reduced Deforestation
Emissions from the destruction and degradation of forests in developing countries account for about 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Deforestation in Tanzania is among Africa’s largest in extension, only surpassed by deforestation in Sudan and Zambia. Emissions caused by this deforestation have been estimated to represent 100 million tons per year, corresponding to approximately twice as much as Norway’s total annual greenhouse gas emissions.
As part of the new partnership with Tanzania, Norway will support research, education and the development of pilot areas for reduced deforestation. Norway will also develop technologies and methods for the measuring and verification of carbon level changes.