At least some of the world’s forests are coming back, and Planet Earth may not become a "skinhead" after all. But will more trees help prevent global warming? We hear about new controversy over the role of forests in climate change and the multi-billion dollar business of carbon trading. Plus, Iraq prepares itself for political turmoil as it issues an arrest warrant for a leading Sunni cleric, and France may get its first woman president.
FROM THIS EPISODE
A media-darling who calls herself an outsider and promises to "change the face of politics" in France has won the Socialist Party's nomination for president. Ségolène Royal won the nomination after an American-style primary, which included TV debates with her two male rivals. They accused her of betraying the party's core values and having a slim grasp of international affairs. She says her new approach to issues and politics will give the Socialists their first victory over the center-right since 1995.
James Graff, Paris Bureau Chief for Time magazine
Iraqi President Jalal Talabani has called an emergency meeting to prevent what he warns could be "complete collapse of the government." There's concern that Sunnis may walk out because of an arrest warrant issued for one of their leading clerics. Harith Dhari is head of the Muslim Scholars Association.
Louise Roug, Reporter for the Los Angeles Times
At the UN's climate summit today in Nairobi, Kofi Annan said there's a "frightening lack of leadership" against global warming. But conflicting reports show how hard it is to know what works and what doesn't. One study says the world's depleted forests are coming back. Forests are regarded as "carbon sinks" that absorb carbon dioxide, one of the major greenhouse gases. Another study says the forests may not absorb much carbon dioxide, despite conventional wisdom. That could have major impact on the multi-billion dollar business of global "carbon trading." We learn more about the controversy over the role of trees in climate change.
Paul Waggoner, Scientist at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station
Peter Holmgren, Chief of Forest Resources Development at the UN Food and Agriculture Organization
William Chameides, Chief Scientist at Environmental Defense
William Schlesinger, Professor of Biogeochemistry at Duke University