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Views from the Center

CGD experts offer ideas and analysis to improve international development policy. Also check out our Global Health blog and US Development Policy blog.

 

SDG Fifteen: Four Observations on Forests

This is one of a series of CGD blogs on tweaks to the SDG targets.

Poor Goal 15.  Forced to accommodate terrestrial ecosystems, forests, desertification, land degradation, and biodiversity, it has the longest title among the SDGs. It is one of the only goals that is too long to tweet. 

Reducing Indonesia’s Deforestation Rate: A Glass Half-Full

This week, World Resources Institute’s Global Forest Watch released new data  showing that Indonesia’s deforestation rate declined significantly in 2013.[1]  Based on satellite imagery analysis conducted by a team at the University of Maryland, Indonesia lost just over a million hectares of tree cover of in 2013, compared to double that the previous year.

Biofuel Subsidies: Bad Policies, Bad Examples for Development

If you haven’t been following debates on biofuels recently, you’ve been missing a lot of excitement.  Fortunately, a timely new CGD Working Paper by my colleague Kim Elliott provides a primer for how to think about these debates through the lens of development.  The bottom line is that biofuel subsidies in rich countries are bad for development by increasing the costs of food and driving tropical deforestation even while failing to reduce the emissions that cause cl

Keystone Pipeline Shows Congress’s Climate Change Confusion

The Senate voted today (Thursday) to move ahead with legislation to build the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, which would transport millions of barrels of dirty tar sands oil from Canada to the US Gulf Coast, mostly to be refined and exported to other countries (legislation destined for the Presidential veto). Strange, then, that last week the Senate voted 98-1 to approve a resolution stating that “climate change is real and not a hoax.” 

Is Indonesia’s Flagship Forest Policy Lowering Emissions by Enough to Meet National Climate Targets?

Indonesia’s flagship forest policy—a moratorium on new licenses to log or clear rainforests that started in 2011—has lowered the country’s greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation by an estimated 1.0-2.5 percent over four years. But unless the moratorium policy is significantly strengthened Indonesia is poised to fall far short of its national climate target of a 26-41 percent reduction in emissions by 2020. 

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