Valdosta Daily Times

What We Think

November 23, 2013

Importance of global forestry reinforced

--- — At the climate change meetings in Warsaw, Poland, this month, the world’s nations debated over ways to cut carbon dioxide emissions in an effort to curtail temperature changes worldwide.

Since the Kyoto Protocol was adopted in 1997, attention has shifted from a focus on the global warming phenomenon to a focus on temperature extremes. Countries are seeing both record cold and record heat, and agreement that man-made emissions are responsible for much of the changes in the atmosphere are now said to be indisputable.

Another cause of temperature extremes is the deforestation in many countries, particularly developing countries in Asia, Africa and South America. The loss of trees and old growth forests has had a measurable impact on carbon dioxide emissions, but incentives for poor countries to curb deforestation have been ineffective. These countries have also argued that development in heavily industrialized nations has adversely impacted their climates. Until developed nations pledged stricter guidelines, the undeveloped nations would not agree to stricter measures.

The agreement reached in Warsaw addresses both ends of the spectrum, with the formation of the Green Climate Fund to channel financing for projects that will prevent deforestation in exchange for stricter oversight by governments.

In America, we are fortunate to have recognized the value of our forests long ago. Their protection and management has been a top environmental concern for more than a century. Here in Georgia, with a state that is heavily dependent on forestry as an economic engine, the value of forests for commercial use and conservation use is well understood, regulated and incentivized. Other countries have used our best practices to develop their own forest preservation methods, recognizing the delicate relationship between development and the environment.

Man may never completely understand or be able to control the symbiotic relationship between its activities and the environment, but there is now science-based evidence that demonstrates the effect one country’s environmental policies can have on others. As in the butterfly effect, said to be when a butterfly flapping its wings on one continent creates a hurricane or tsunami halfway around the world, we now know that one subtle change can cause devastating events on a large scale. Countries working together now for the protection of the world’s resources will ensure that there will still be resources in the future.

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What We Think
  • Thumbs up

    THUMBS UP: To Carol Mikkelsen. Valdosta State University Opera’s “Dido and Aeneas” marks the last production before Mikkelsen’s retirement
    after 44 years with Valdosta State and the creation of the opera program. She plans to continue
    working with VSU part-time, but this weekend’s performance marks her last full-time participation with the opera productions. Ovations all around for her work.

    April 18, 2014

  • Feed the hungry, adopt a duck

    If you haven’t already adopted a duck, you have a little more than a week to do so.

    April 17, 2014

  • If I were mayor

    Each year, the City of Valdosta holds an essay contest, “If I Were Mayor,” with students in the area writing their ideas about what they would do as the head of the city.

    April 16, 2014

  • The real lessons of a mock drill

    Valdosta High School’s Students Against Destructive Decisions held a powerful mock demonstration Monday morning on the school’s campus.

    April 14, 2014

  • Kudos to VPD

    Followed by a stellar report on Sunday about the drop in the crime rate in the City of Valdosta, city police officers prove their worth once again by arresting a dangerous fugitive in our community.

    April 13, 2014

  • It just plain stinks

    After every rain event, the pungent smell of sewage can be detected around the rivers and streams of south Georgia, and Florida residents brace for more to float their way.

    April 13, 2014

  • Pennsylvania school stabbings: Why?

    The following editorial appeared in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Thursday, April 10:

    April 11, 2014

  • European bans on emails unlikely in America

    Several European countries are banning work emails to employees before and after normal working hours, between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m., in an effort to curb the perceived abuse of employees by corporations.

    April 11, 2014

  • Strength of character

    It was an unusual friendship — a tiny 8-year old girl with long blonde hair and the 6’10” Michigan State basketball player.

    April 10, 2014

  • Daly’s return a boost for Valdosta

    Flashy, colorful and always a hit with the fans for his long drives and humble demeanor, John Daly’s return to Kinderlou Forest and the South Georgia Classic is a boon for Valdosta.

    April 9, 2014

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