On a Tuesday, we held a side-event on our plan to reduce emissions deforestation and degradation or REDD. The discussion featured speakers from some of the region's most affected by forest destruction—Brazil, Papau New Guinea, and Indonesia—as on the ground, intimate knowledge of local conditions are essential to designing a successful protection program.

Ending deforestation is a crucial component to tackling climate change since some 20 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions globally come from forest destruction and degradation—more than all the world’s planes, trains, ships, and automobiles.

Greenpeace has proposed a plan for REDD that strives to achieve real, verifiable emissions reductions with a system that protects the rights of indigenous peoples and maintains the irreplaceable biodiversity of tropical forests with a fund-based financing program.

Brazil has already approved a funding mechanism, the Amazon Fund, which is much touted at the climate talks. Indonesia’s support today of an Indonesian Fund is an indication that a flexible approach to a REDD fund can be a big win not only for the climate but also for the forests, their biodiversity and the peoples that depend on them.

In Barcelona Greenpeace is working to get a REDD deal with the following components:

-One that doesn’t treat tropical forests only as carbon sinks, but recognizes and preserves their biodiversity and the rights of the indigenous people and other forest dependent communities that dwell there.

-One that does not create a loophole for industrialized countries to avoid emissions reductions or logging companies to shift their practices elsewhere. But instead ensures absolute emissions reductions in tropical forests and preserves incentives for industrialized countries to reduce domestic emissions dramatically.

Prevented deforestation should not be turned into emission allowances for countries. Forest offsets would crash the international carbon market and allow the coal industry to continue building power stations in the future.