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International Update Volume 41, Issue 35

CDM CAN CONTINUE EVEN WITHOUT KYOTO EXTENSION

The United Nations carbon market will likely continue even in the absence of a second round of emissions targets, according to Bloomberg. The Clean Development Mechanism, the second largest offset market in the world, can continue to generate credits even if wealthy countries fail to extend the Kyoto Protocol. The mechanism, worth $1.5 billion last year according to the World Bank, can be used for compliance in the European Union's scheme, and it will "cruise through" talks, said Alex Sarac, legal director at DLA Piper LLP.

BRAZIL SENATE EASES FOREST PROTECTION RULES

Brazil

Brazilian Amazon deforestation fell to the lowest level ever reported, but progress may be shortlived as the Senate voted to ease rules for farmer forest preservation. The bill, an update to a 1965 law that severely restricted the amount of land farmers can clear, revises the 55 million hectares that farmers would have to restore to 24 million hectares. And while the Senate revised a lower house measure that would have provided amnesty for illegal deforestation before 2008, farmers will not have to pay billions of dollars in fines. Instead, they will have time to allow regeneration.

BEIJING SMOG FINALLY LIFTS; RESIDENTS CALL FOR BETTER DATA

China

Air pollution in Beijing hit levels hazardous to human health a majority of days in the past few weeks, and severe smog led to hundreds of flight cancellations and road closures last week. In some cases, traffic jams stretched as long as 30 miles and drivers were given emergency food and water handouts as they waited for visibility to return. Stores sold out of face masks and air purifiers, and bloggers posted photographs of the thick haze over the city blaming the Chinese government for failing to inform the public of the threat posed by air pollution. The U.S.