Photo: Angelo Cavalli/Corbis
Despite rapid expansion of the drivers of deforestation, there have been notable successes in channeling their growth in ways that no longer cause deforestation. Businesses can move to become deforestation-free, and consumers can make sure businesses know this is a priority. This strategy has produced encouraging progress on deforestation-free palm oil.
Strong policies can also play an important role. REDD+, which offers rewards to developing countries for reducing their deforestation rates, is one of the best, most affordable strategies for reducing tropical deforestation. On the demand side, the U.S. has used the Lacey Act to close the market for illegally sourced wood. However, these policies require effective implementation and enforcement in order to work.
Finally, voluntary agreements between businesses, policymakers and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), such as the Soy Moratorium in Brazil, have proved to be a promising approach.