Climate changes

Created: 17 April 2015

Climate Changes, caused by the increase of greenhouse gases (GHG) emission resulting from human activities, is one of the main current environmental issues. Scientific studies commissioned by the UN alert that climate change may cause severe environmental, economic and social impacts.

It is estimated, for example, that 7.8 million hectares of forest plantation area in Brazil are responsible for the supply of approximately 1.7 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2eq¹). In addition, the industry generates and maintains carbon reserves of approximately 2.48 billion tons of (CO2) in 5.6 million hectares in the form of the Legal Reserve (LR), Permanent Protection Areas (PPAs the acronym in Portuguese) and Private Heritage Reserves natural (PRNP the acronym in Portuguese).

The production structure of planted trees industry is divided into two main components, forestry and manufacturing.

The forestry component - areas of planted forests and preservation of native forest - is based on the formation of carbon stocks through reforestation with production forests (planting and renewable crop cycles), and the sustainable management of protected areas of native forests. And, as Brazil seeks to reduce the overall intensity of their emissions; the planted trees sector has a role of substantial importance for the country, because the range of removals generated by increments of forest stocks and serviceability for long periods make the forest has a huge potential to contribute to combating climate change.

In the industrial component - wood processing structures (pulp and paper, charcoal for pig iron production, ferroalloys and steel, sheet metal and plywood, treated wood for construction, bioenergy, etc.) - various segments of the forest-based approach of renewable energy self-sufficiency, with minimum levels of greenhouse gases (GHGs). This happened thanks to the adoption of various measures; such as the replacement of fossil energy sources with renewable (black liquor, natural gas and biomass).

There are, therefore, two types of climate benefits that characterize the sector's potential: GHG removals and carbon stocks in the areas of planting and conservation; and emissions avoided through the use of forest products and managed instead of fossil-based products or nonrenewable at different stages of the production chain. So, whether under domestic public policy, either in the international regulations, any initiatives should consider these two dynamics.

It also highlights the importance of integrating public policies related to the sector with the National Climate Change Policy (NPCC) and the full use of the means of implementation, generated at the international level, particularly in the context of the Framework Convention United Nations Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Paris Agreement resulting from COP 21. In the framework of the Agreement, deserving a special attention to the use of the new market mechanism to be regulated based on the experience of existing mechanisms (Clean Development Mechanism), and the increment of initiatives of forest inventories in REDD+² system.

The construction of public policies and carbon market mechanisms to internalize and economically enhance the climate benefits are therefore essential for the proper integration of the sector into a new global low carbon economy.

CO2eq¹: metric measure used to compare emissions from various greenhouse gases based on the global warming potential of each.
REDD+²: System that generates payments by results related to combating deforestation, degradation and increasing and forest carbon stocks.