Burning Forests Heat Globe

Rainforests absorbe CO2, but burning them pumps out 25% of all greenhouse gasses
By Sarah Seltzer,  Newser User
Posted May 14, 2007 8:56 AM CDT
Burning Forests Heat Globe
PANAMA. 2004. Deforestation not far from Boca de Cupe. (NYC38853)   (Magnum Photos)

Destruction of rainforests is a bigger source of global warming than all the planes, cars and factories in the world, concludes a study reported today in the Independent. It's not just the loss of forests, which absorb CO2, that's the problem. It's the rampant burning of those forests that actually pumps more CO2 into the atmosphere than any sector except energy.

With burning forests responsible for 25% of all greenhouse gasses, Indonesia and Brazil are now the third- and fourth-largest  producers in the world (after the US and China).  And it's one problem that could be solved without new technology; what's needed is political will and financial incentives to poor nations, the rainforest experts conclude.
(More rainforest stories.)

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