Multiplying the Impact of California’s Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32) through International Partnerships for Tropical Forests


Daniel Nepstad, Briana Swette and Jack Horowitz


California is seeking to scale up its climate change mitigation impact through international partnerships, such as the recent accords with China, Mexico and Peru. In this brief, we explore two international opportunities to reduce emissions from tropical deforestation that could give weight to these agreements and potentially triple the impact of AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act, while simultaneously containing possible fuel price increases within the state. California could achieve this multiplying effect if it (1) exercises its role as a founding member of the Governors’ Climate and Forests task force (GCF) by signing the recent declaration to reduce deforestation, and (2) implements the existing provision for the use of international forestry offsets in AB 32. Brazil states that are members of the GCF have already achieved ten times more CO2 emissions reductions than AB 32 will achieve by 2020 by slowing Amazon deforestation, and the recent GCF commitment shows that states in Peru, Mexico and Indonesia are ready to do their part but need California as a strong partner.