Norway: First country to commit to zero deforestation
Tags: sustainability, deforestation
What? In May 2016, the Norwegian government announced plans to change its public procurement rules to avoid contributing to the destruction of rainforests. The move comes in response to a growing awareness that a broad range of products have links to tropical deforestation. For example, between 2000 and 2011, the production of beef, palm oil, soy, and wood products in just seven countries (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Papua New Guinea) was responsible for 40-percent of total tropical deforestation and 44-percent of associated carbon emissions.
So what? With the adoption of the Paris Agreement, national commitments to avoid ecosystem degradation and the destruction of natural carbon sinks may gain in popularity. This may transform the global supply chain and reduce demand for natural resources in vulnerable ecosystem regions of the world, including the Arctic. Alternately, such a policy shift could increase the demand for resources in regions with limited impacts on greenhouse gas emissions or with environmental stewardship best practices in place.