Climate change will transform forests that directly sustain nearly one billion people, warns a report to be released next week at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) meeting in Poznán, Poland. The report, issued by the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), calls for the implementation of adaptation measures to reduce the vulnerability of forests and forest-dependent communities to wildfires, drought, flooding, disease, and other environmental challenges.
The report, titled Facing an Uncertain Future: How Forests and People can Adapt to Climate Change, argues that forests are "critical to the ability of human societies to adapt to climate change" and should be treated accordingly in international climate negotiations. "The imperative to assist forests and forest communities to adapt to climate change has been poorly addressed in national policies and international negotiations. The adaptation challenge is being treated as secondary to mitigation, and yet the two are inextricably linked," said Frances Seymour, Director General of CIFOR.