The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has said that forests have an acclaimed role as a carbon sink needed to tackle climate change and called to mind that when protecting forests, people should not forget the trees, reports NaijaAgroNet.
FAO, in its latest study said that less known is how their contribution could be scaled up even after a tree has been logged.
NaijaAgroNet gathered that the new publication, Forestry for a low-carbon future: Integrating forests and wood products in climate change strategies, offered insights in how to catalyse a "virtuous cycle" that exploits the life cycle of wood products - ranging from home furniture to wood pellets burned for fuel - to enhance and even multiply the well-known ability of forests to remove and store carbon from the atmosphere.
The Assistant Director-General for Forestry, René Castro-Salazar, said that forests are at the heart of the transition to low-carbon economies, stressing "not only because of their double role as sink and source of emissions, but also through the wider use of wood products to displace more fossil fuel intense products."
Forests, Castro-Salazar pointed out, do herculean work in locking carbon dioxide into leaves, branches and soils, while deforestation and forest degradation account for up to 12 percent of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions. The relative speed and cost-effectiveness with which forests make their presence - or absence - felt is one key reason they figure prominently in the plans countries are crafting to meet commitments made in the Paris Agreement on climate change.
Designed primarily for policy makers and experts but of interest to architects and the energy industry, the report - the fruit of innovative collaboration involving more than 100 experts - looks at how forests can be harnessed to the global climate change challenge.
FAO further said that its guiding message is that optimal engineering of the carbon lifecycle of trees and wood products allows, over the long term, for sustainably harvested forests to complement and even enhance the climate mitigation benefits provided by conserved forests.