All posts by Tom Bliss

How good are China’s new forests for the climate?

During the last decade, roughly 13 million hectares of forest were lost through deforestation each year; this is a reduction from the 16 million hectares deforested annually in the 1990s, but is still an alarmingly high amount. However, the net change in forested area for the same period was a loss of only 5.2 million hectares per year; reflecting the significant amount of natural forest recovery and deliberate afforestation that has occurred. Continue reading How good are China’s new forests for the climate?

Forest carbon projects trade $178 million in 2010

Forest carbon projects set records in 2010, trading $178 million for 30.1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (MtCO2e). This is nearly a 50% increase over 2009 which was itself a record breaking year. The large surge in the forest carbon market was driven largely by Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) projects. Continue reading Forest carbon projects trade $178 million in 2010


Each year large areas of Amazon forest are cleared to make way for cattle pasture in a process called slash and burn. Trees are cut and left to dry before being burnt. As well as releasing large quantities of carbon dioxide these fires emit substantial amounts of smoke into the atmosphere which can cause air quality problems and additional impacts on climate. Black carbon within the smoke particles causes the particles to absorb radiation and warm climate. The smoke particles can also influence the properties of clouds (causing warming or a cooling) and can result in changes to rainfall patterns potentially delaying the start of the wet season. The overall climate impact of the smoke particles is not well known. Continue reading SAMBBA

Up in Smoke

Up in Smoke, a documentary about slash and burn agriculture and the attempts on the Inga Foundation to find a solution airs tonight (Tuesday 27th September, 10pm) on More 4. The program, which took 4 years to film, describes the attempts on Mike Hands and the Inga Foundation to stop slash and burn agriculture in Honduras.

The Inga Foundation is one of our project partners, see here for more information on their project.  Dominick Spracklen

Tribute to a Visionary

It was with great sadness that I learnt that Wangari Maathai had died on Sunday, aged 71.  Founder of the Kenyan Green Belt movement that mobilised impoverished Kenyan women to plant 45 million trees, she was one of the first to understand that environmental protection has a vital role to play in economic and social progress.  Continue reading Tribute to a Visionary

Straight Success

Congratulations to one of our project sponsors, Straight plc,  which has recently enjoyed a couple of notable business successes.  The Yorkshire-based recycling company has won a contract for the largest single order to date of its Steelybin containers.  Straight will supply the London Waste and Recycling Board with over 1,000 Steelybin four wheel recycling containers as part of the Board’s recycling programme. Continue reading Straight Success

Honorary Doctorate of Laws for Jonathan

Congratulations to my fellow trustee, Jonathan Wild, who recently received an honorary Doctorate of Laws from the University of Leeds in recognition of his outstanding achievements.

Former chairman and chief executive of one of Yorkshire’s best-known businesses, Bettys & Taylors of Harrogate, Jonathan enjoyed a 30 year career with the company, putting green issues on the business agenda long before it became fashionable to do so. Continue reading Honorary Doctorate of Laws for Jonathan