Rainforest Deal Gets the Ax
Conference punts on plan to pay poor nations to preserve trees
By Caroline Miller,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 19, 2009 7:46 AM CST
A delegate rests, after a 24-hour period of plenary sessions at the UN Climate Summit in Copenhagen, Saturday, Dec.19, 2009.   (Photo/Heribert Proepper)
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(Newser) – A deal to protect rainforests by paying poor countries not to cut them down died this morning in Copenhagen, as delegates to the UN climate conference failed to pass a larger agreement to cut greenhouse gas emissions that would have included it. "It's depressing," one advocate tells the Washington Post. "It means I've got to spend another year coming to meetings and talking about the same things."

Logging and burning forests to clear land for plantations or cattle ranches is blamed for about 20% of global emissions, the Post notes—about as much as the world's cars, trucks, trains, planes and ships combined.