According to a report, the world is not meeting its commitments to end deforestation by 2030.
A report published on Monday by a coalition of environmental groups stated that the world is not progressing quickly enough to fulfill its commitment to end deforestation by 2030, and instead, deforestation is worsening in 2022.
At the 2021 United Nations climate summit in Glasgow, over 140 countries, which make up the majority of the world’s forests, promised to stop and reverse the decline and harm of forests by the end of the next ten years.
The annual report on Forest Declaration Assessment reported that deforestation has risen by 4% globally in 2022, with a destruction of approximately 66,000 square kilometers (25,000 square miles). This indicates that the world is not on track to meet its goal of ending deforestation by 2030, as it is currently 21% behind.
Erin Matson, a senior consultant at the environmental organization Climate Focus, stated that the world’s forests are currently facing a crisis and that we are missing our chance to make positive advancements.
A group of non-governmental and academic groups carried out a study evaluating the advancement towards achieving the goal of ending deforestation by 2030.
The Glasgow pledge and 2014 New York Declaration on Forests both involve a condensed list of countries and numerous major corporations who have pledged to take similar actions.
The study reveals that attempts to protect old-growth tropical forests, which are valued for their high carbon levels and diverse wildlife, are currently falling behind by 33%, with 4.1 million hectares lost in the year 2022.
During a press conference, the scientists involved in the study emphasized that the yearly allocation of $2.2 billion in public funds towards forest protection projects is insufficient compared to the overall investment required.
Additionally, the research went beyond examining deforestation and examined forest degradation as well. One researcher even suggested that the amount of degraded forests could be significantly greater than the amount of deforestation occurring globally.
According to Climate Focus, factors that contribute to the degradation of forests include the logging industry, grazing by livestock, and the construction of roads.
However, Franziska Haupt, a managing partner at consultancy Climate Focus and lead author, stated that certain regions are showing advancements.
According to Haupt, approximately 50 nations are making progress towards ending deforestation, particularly Brazil, Indonesia, and Malaysia which have seen significant decreases in forest loss.
Haupt expressed that there is still hope, stating that these countries serve as role models for others to emulate.
The WWF Brazil representative stated during a news conference that the country of Brazil, responsible for approximately 30% of global deforestation, has experienced a notable change in its approach to combatting deforestation under the new government compared to the previous one.
According to Darragh Conway, who is in charge of rights and governance for the Forest Declaration Assessment, this demonstrates the potential outcomes when nations with effective legislation and resources prioritize their implementation.