Brazilian industry groups form climate change coalition

A coalition of Brazilian agribusiness trade organizations has formed an alliance to support the global climate change talks.

The Brazilian Climate Alliance, composed of 14 organizations representing everything from sugar to vegetable oil to paper interests, is calling on the Brazilian government to push proposals that allow the country to earn carbon credits. It maintains that any national mitigation actions should consider planting forests, agriculture, bioenergy and other activities that may contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gases.

Business leaders also note that 40 percent of Brazil’s energy comes from renewables – many tied to the industries they represent, like ethanol.

“Despite this admirable accomplishment, the image that prevails – and has to be changed – is that of a carbon-emitting Brazil due to deforestation and forest fires in the Amazon,” Elizabeth de Carvalhaes, executive president of the Brazilian Pulp and Paper Association, said in a statement.

“For that reason, Brazil ends up being included among the villains of global warming,” she said.

Marcos Jank, president of the Brazilian Sugarcane Industry Association, called it “fundamental” that Brazil move forward with proposals that increase the possibilities of earning carbon credits and said that so far, the country’s access has been “unfairly limited.”

“It’s as if we are being penalized for being pioneers in various initiatives that clearly help to reduce carbon emissions but are not recognized by existing mechanisms, such as the large-scale production and use of ethanol,” he said.

Other recommendations include: urging the Brazilian government to commit to deforestation reduction rates; revising the Clean Development Mechanism to make the international offset program more streamlined; and ensuring that any international program that aims to reduce emissions from deforestation is structured to ensure that financial incentives go directly to communities, landowners and others that are directly responsible for the emission reductions.

For More Information: World Business Council - WBCSD

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