The Future of Forests – Podcast with Jonah Busch

August 25, 2015

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.

Terrible news for the climate but also for development, as forest communities in poor countries benefit from a healthy forest ecosystem. The key is making forests worth more to them alive than dead – a win for both development and for climate.

In their paper The Future of Forests: Emissions from Tropical Deforestation with and without a Carbon Price, 2016–2050, Busch and Engleman highlight practical and affordable measures the world can take to reduce tropical deforestation, including carbon pricing. Tropical forest preservation is a bargain, says Busch, and “forests should be a much bigger part of the climate solution in 2015.”


CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors, drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD is a nonpartisan, independent organization and does not take institutional positions.