Duncan Brack

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A view of a forest land clearing in South Aceh, Indonesia. Photo: Getty Images

Ever since the collapse of the attempt to negotiate a global agreement on forests at the UN Conference on Environment and Development (the ‘Earth Summit’) in 1992, there has been, in effect, no rules-based international order relating to forests.

Recent developments, however, hold out the prospect – faint though it may be – of the emergence of an international framework promoting forest governance and law enforcement by regulating trade in timber and agricultural commodities associated with deforestation.

There is no doubt that this is an urgent challenge. Over the last 60 years, the world has lost almost 10 per cent of its remaining forests. …  Seguir leyendo »

Fuel composed of wood chips to be used for the UEM (Usine d’Electricité de Metz) biomass plant in Metz, eastern France.

Chatham House’s recent paper, Woody Biomass for Power and Heat: Impacts on the Global Climate, highlights how the use of wood for electricity generation and heat in modern (non-traditional) technologies has grown rapidly in recent years, and has the potential to continue to do so. EU member states’ national targets for renewable energy generation agreed in 2009 have helped ensure that the EU is now the world’s largest producer and consumer of wood for energy. And although other member states use wood more extensively for heat, the UK is the EU’s largest user for electricity generation, mostly sourced from the US and Canada.…  Seguir leyendo »