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UN Climate Action Summit

Germany provides 200 million euros in seed funding for World Bank loan programme for forest conservation


Deciduous forest in autumn

Press release of 23.09.2019 |

BERLIN / NEW YORK - At the start of the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York on Monday, German Development Minister Gerd Müller launched a global forest conservation programme together with World Bank President David Malpass. The German Development Ministry (BMZ) is providing 200 million euros for this endeavour. In addition, the BMZ is making available 30 million euros for the Central African Forest Initiative (CAFI) and 20 million euros for indigenous communities, bringing its total new contribution to global forest conservation to 250 million euros.

Minister Müller noted, "Rainforests are the lungs of our planet. The Amazon rainforest alone produces 20 per cent of the world's oxygen. But every four seconds, an area the size of a soccer field is cut down – mainly for huge soya and palm oil plantations. Eleven per cent of global carbon emissions are caused by slash-and-burn and deforestation. We have to stop that immediately. To that end, we need an ambitious international forest conservation programme that goes significantly beyond the decisions of the Biarritz G7 summit. Together with the World Bank, we are now launching the PROGREEN forest protection initiative. Germany has initiated this new endeavour and is providing 200 million euros in seed funding. In total, Germany has already helped to protect 160 million hectares of forest land worldwide, 60 times the area of all German nature conservation areas."

PROGREEN is a new approach to fighting global forest loss. The target volume is one billion dollars. The initiative focuses on activities to protect and restore tropical forests, fight illegal logging, support certification mechanisms for sustainable tropical timber, and assist with fighting forest fires. The partnership is all about recognising and fostering the value of forests for sustainable development.

During the UN summit week in New York, United Nations members are meeting to advance new actions against climate change.

Based on the Nationally Determined Contributions published by countries to date, it seems more likely that global warming will reach 3 to 4 degrees than the 1.5 degrees as laid down in the Paris Agreement. UN Secretary-General Guterres is therefore urging countries to increase their efforts.

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