Brazil, China, Indonesia and the European Union are the areas where the potential for action not to exceed 1.5 ° C of warming via better land management, especially forests, is the highest, according to a study published Monday .
India, Russia, Mexico, the United States, Australia, and Colombia follow this work. Nature Climate Change rolling out a roadmap to reduce land use emissions by 50% per decade between 2020 and 2050. That's a drop of 85% by 2050.
“Their action is essential”
“These ten countries account for about 50 percent of land-use emissions, so action is essential,” Stephanie Roe, lead author of the study, told AFP.
Land use includes forest management (deforestation, reforestation), preservation and restoration of other natural environments (peatlands, mangroves, swamps, etc.) and agricultural practices (agroforestry, seeds, fertilizers, manure management maintenance of pastures, etc.).
This study has shown, says Stephanie Roe (University of Virginia), that the possible reductions of these emissions are not only “in the tropical forests, which focus a lot of attention because of deforestation, but also in developed countries and emerging “.
Overall, “sustainable land management could contribute up to 30% to the emission reduction effort needed to achieve the goal of keeping temperatures below 1.5 ° C,” she says.
Forest preservation, virtuous agriculture
“Currently, the sector emits 11 GtCO2e (gigatonnes of CO2 equivalent) per year, or about 25% of” global “emissions, with this roadmap, it could be carbon neutral in terms of emissions in 2040 and a carbon sink net of 3GtCO2e per year in 2050, “say the researchers in a statement.
The set of recommended actions would in fact reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 15 GtCO2e per year, 50% by reducing emissions and the rest by increasing CO2 captured by natural environments.
The reduction in emissions would be largely achieved (4.6 GtCO2e / yr) through the preservation of forests, peat bogs and wetlands. The rest of the decline would be possible thanks to virtuous farming practices (1GtCO2e / year) and, to the tune of 1,8 GtCO2e / year, thanks to a less meaty diet (United States, EU, China, Brazil, Argentina and Russia ) and a reduction of food waste.
However, stresses Charlotte Streck, co-author of the study, these objectives will require profound changes because “deforestation has increased by more than 40% since 2014 and the restoration of natural environments has made only modest progress”.