"U.S. companies could save tens of billions of dollars by investing in efforts to combat deforestation in developing nations instead of cleaning up their own domestic carbon dioxide emissions, according to a report released Wednesday.
The report, compiled by a high-powered bipartisan group, backs the use of 'forest offsets' in the global effort to curb pollution that is heating up the atmosphere. It was released in advance of the upcoming Senate debate on climate legislation and an international meeting on the issue set for December in Copenhagen.
The burning of tropical forests and their conversion to cattle farms and soybean fields is responsible for about 17% of the emissions that are causing global warming -- more than all the world's cars, trucks, trains and planes combined -- scientists say.
[The report was from] the Commission on Climate and Tropical Forests, co-chaired by former Sen. Lincoln Chafee (R-R.I.) and John Podesta, chief of staff under President Clinton and now head of the Center for American Progress, a Washington-based think tank."