Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

CGD Podcast

Exploring smart policies for a better world.

 

Why Forests? Why Now? – Podcast with Frances Seymour

Preventing dangerous climate change is critical for promoting global development. And saving tropical forests is essential to doing both. CGD senior fellow Frances Seymour, coauthor of a new CGD book, joins me on this week’s podcast to explain why forests are key not only to meeting the objectives of the Paris climate agreement, but also to making progress on the sustainable development goals. 

What to Expect at COP21 – Podcast with Frances Seymour

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.

“Our Economy Depends on Maintaining the Forests” – Podcast with Brazil’s Amazon Champion

If you want a simple explanation of why climate change is a development issue, Juliana Santiago can provide it. The head of the Amazon Fund department at Brazil’s national development bank BNDES tells me “we identified that our economy was dependent on the maintenance of the forest,” and that, with 29m people living in the Amazon, many in poverty, getting rural landowners to “understand that deforestation might be a threat to their business was part of this engagement in protecting the forest and thinking about sustainable development.”

The Future of Forests – Podcast with Jonah Busch

Unless the world acts to reduce deforestation, an area the size of India will be cleared by 2050. That is the stark finding of a new CGD paper by Jonah Busch and Jens Engleman. The amount of carbon dioxide emitted by that level of destruction is equivalent to “running 44,000 American coal-fired power plants for a year,” says Busch in this CGD Podcast. 

Protecting Forests with Global Forest Watch 2.0 – David Wheeler and Nigel Sizer

My guests on this week’s Wonkcast are David Wheeler, senior fellow emeritus at CGD, and Nigel Sizer, director of the Global Forest Project at the World Resources Institute (WRI). They joined me after a presentation for CGD staff of Global Forest Watch 2.0, a real-time forest monitoring system that draws from David’s work on the Forest Monitoring for Action initiative (FORMA) here at CGD.

Reducing Deforestation by Paying for Performance -- Michele de Nevers

Michele

Reducing carbon emissions from forest clearing and degradation has become an important part of the international climate agenda. But how can we create incentives to reduce deforestation, and how can we measure success? My guest on this week’s Wonkcast, visiting senior associate Michele de Nevers, tells me that the answers to these questions are more valuable than ever – if we don’t act quickly, our forests will disappear.

What’s Driving Deforestation? Surprise Findings—David Wheeler

David Wheeler, our lead researcher on climate and development, decided recently to retire from CGD, though he will continue to be active in CGD’s intellectual life as our first senior fellow emeritus. Since joining CGD in 2006, David has published more than 20 working papers and launched two pathbreaking global databases, Carbon Monitoring for Action (CARMA), which provides data on the CO2 emissions of more than 50,000 powerplants worldwide, and Forest Monitoring for Action (FORMA), which uses satellite data to provide rapid, high-resolution tracking of tropical deforestation.