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Next week, nations gather in Paris for the 21st Conference of Parties (COP21) with the goal of establishing a global plan to address climate change. That includes coming to agreements about how to both reduce and adapt to climate change, how to finance those measures, and how to share accountability. 

That’s a pretty big goal, but my guest this week on the CGD podcast, CGD senior fellow Frances Seymour, is cautiously optimistic. “A lot of it is about signaling good faith, both in terms of willingness to reduce emissions but also willingness to put up finance, and a recognition that everybody’s got a role to play in this — governments, private sector, civil society groups, indigenous people’s organizations — and that by working together, over time we can ratchet up ambition to get to where we need to be.”

One topic that will be on the table is whether to include measures to reduce emissions from deforestation, known as REDD+, in the formal agreement. Since the practicalities of REDD+ are already well understood, Frances tells me, including it in the deal would send a signal about the importance of forest preservation. Emissions from forests “are a big part of the problem, and an even bigger part of the solution,” she says. 

Frances and several other CGD experts will be in Paris sharing CGD’s research on the importance of forest preservation for both development and the climate. Keep an eye on the CGD blog for updates. 

Disclaimer

CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors, drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD is a nonpartisan, independent organization and does not take institutional positions.