Forest and climate
The fact that forests affect, and are affected by, climate change is beyond question: this topic is covered in detail in Roshydromet’s Second assessment report of climate change and the implications for the Russian Federation, as well as in the Fifth Assessment Report of the International Panel on Climate Change, vol. 2. Climate Change 2014, Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability. However, this interaction is not that simple, and a good deal of speculation tends to grow around, which needs to be separated from the scientific vision. Particularly important is to do so in the context of
There are a few issues that are
Russian, or even global, forests are unlikely to be a ‘panacea’ for anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions, while the problem of shortage or reduction of oxygen sources is not existent in principle. In terms of global СО2 balance, Russia’s primary goal is not to increase carbon dioxide sinks (which is unrealistic), but to the largest possible degree to maintain the current level of absorption (nearly 600 million tСО2 per year), which amounts to just 1.2% of global anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions, yet offsets more than 20% of current emissions from all economic sectors in the country.
‘Maximum possible account of the absorbing capacity of forests’ in the new climate agreement is obviously very important, but should not be determined by