Climate change poses profound, direct, and well-documented threats to biodiversity. A significant fraction of Earth's species is at risk of extinction due to changing precipitation and temperature regimes, rising and acidifying oceans, and other factors.

In the tortured history of climate-change negotiations, enlightened thinking has translated into positive action all too rarely. But governments have recently seen the light on a
crucial issue: they have recognized the vital role that intact natural ecosystems have in limiting the build-up of atmospheric greenhouse gases.