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Forest protection hinges on 10-word phrase

Source:  Copyright 2009, Reuters
Date:  November 3, 2009
Original URL: Status ONLINE

Developing nations could end up being paid billions of dollars to raze rainforests and build palm oil plantations in their place if the current text of the Copenhagen climate treaty sticks, a group of advocates warned at the United Nations climate talks on Tuesday.

It's not set in stone. Negotiators could still reinsert a 10-word phrase that was sliced from the treaty language, but that would have to happen by Friday, the last day of the U.N. talks in Barcelona.

Barcelona is the last stop for global warming delegates before the Copenhagen summit starts on December 7. After that, negotiators must whittle down the bloated text, not add to it, as instructed by the U.N. Secretariat.

"There is enormous pressure to reduce down," Andrea Johnson of the non-governmental Environmental Investigation Agency told SolveClimate. "And safeguards have been discussed already more than anything else since August."

The 10-word provision — "safeguards ...

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