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New efforts to prevent deforestation

-Norway is prepared to increase its support for efforts to prevent deforestation in developing countries to 370 million euros a year. This is a way of achieving large cuts in greenhouse gas emissions quickly and at low cost, said Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg Sunday when he presented Norway’s strategy for combating deforestation in developing countries.

17/12/2007 :: Norway’s contribution to the efforts against deforestation will be presented at the UN Climate Change Conference in Bali.

The Prime Minister, together with Minister of the Environment and International Development Erik Solheim and Minister of Petroleum and Energy Åslaug Haga, presented the strategy Sunday at a meeting with the parliamentary leaders of the Conservative Party, the Christian Democratic Party and the Liberals.

– Early action to prevent global warming is much more effective than action at a later stage. Steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are therefore urgently required, said Mr Stoltenberg.

– An initiative in this area in the next few years can bring about substantial cuts in greenhouse gas emissions while the world is seeking to put in place a new, more comprehensive agreement on climate change, explained Mr Solheim.

At present, deforestation in developing countries is releasing carbon dioxide corresponding to about 20% of total global greenhouse gas emissions. Reducing deforestation is of crucial importance not only in relation to climate change, but also in order to maintain biodiversity and safeguard people’s livelihoods.

Norway advocates the inclusion of commitments to reduce emissions from deforestation in developing countries in a global climate change regime for the period after 2012. This will be important as a means of achieving the target Norway has adopted, which is to limit the average rise in global temperature to no more than 2°C. Norway will work towards agreement on such a regime in Copenhagen in 2009.

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Stoltenberg’s speech at Bali

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Photo: Rune Bjåstad