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Archive for the ‘ngos’ Category

CARE International and the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Alliance (CCBA) will present their draft REDD + Social and Environmental Standards (REDD + SE) at a side event during COP-15 hosted by the government of Nepal. REDD + SE aims to help governments institute equitable REDD programs on a national level. The joint CARE/CCBA initiative has also been consulting with a few national governments on testing the standards on a national scale and aims to finalize the new standards in March, 2010.

This initiative is developing standards that can be used by governments, NGOs, financing agencies and other stakeholders to design and implement REDD and other forest carbon programs that respect the rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities and generate significant social and biodiversity co-benefits. These standards will be designed to work for the new global REDD+ regime expected to emerge out of ongoing UNFCCC negotiations, that is for government-led programs implemented at national or state/provincial/regional level and for all forms of fund-based or market-based financing. The standards will consist of principles, criteria and indicators that define the issues of concern and the
required levels of social and environmental performance.

Draft Principles:

  1. Rights to land, territories and resources are recognized and respected.
  2. The benefits of the REDD+ program are shared equitably among all stakeholders and
    rights holders.
  3. The REDD+ program contributes to sustainable livelihoods and poverty alleviation for
    forest-dependent peoples.
  4. The REDD+ program contributes to broader sustainable development and good
    governance objectives.
  5. Biodiversity and ecosystem services are maintained and enhanced.
  6. All relevant stakeholders and rights holders are able to participate fully and effectively in
    the REDD+ program.
  7. All stakeholders and rights holders have timely access to appropriate and accurate
    information to enable good governance of the REDD+ program.
  8. The REDD+ program complies with applicable local22 and national laws and international
    treaties and agreements.

Download the draft REDD + Social and Environmental Standards [pdf]…

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International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) have launched a new Good Practice Guide on Sustainable Forest Management: Biodiversity and Livelihoods. This booklet is part of a series of Good Practice Guides produced by the CBD. It provides a range of case studies and other materials to make the forest sector more biodiversity-friendly, and socially beneficial. It addresses the linkages between forestry, biodiversity, and development / poverty reduction. The summaries and examples included in this booklet show how biodiversity and sustainable economic development can go hand in hand. The primary target audiences for the guide are government officers and decision-makers in the various government agencies related to forestry (at global, regional, national and local levels), as well as development practitioners. A CD-ROM is also available.

Chapter II.c of the guide focuses specifically on the role of indigenous and local communities. Indigenous case studies include one from the Congo (on the use of GPS and community radio by Pygmy communities to protect cultural sites) and Malaysia (on biodiversity in production forests).

“Recent developments for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD) have the potential to provide benefits to local and indigenous communities. However, a number of conditions would need to be met for these co-benefits to be achieved. Indigenous peoples are unlikely to benefit from REDD where they have no secure land tenure; if there is no principle of free, prior and informed consent concerning the use of their lands and resources; and if their identities are not recognized or they have no space to participate in policy-making processes and/or lack the capacity to engage on an equal footing.” – Extract from Sustainable Forest Management: Biodiversity and Livelihoods

Download the Good Practice Guide on Sustainable Forest Management: Biodiversity and Livelihoods [pdf]…

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Carbon Trading – How it Works and Why It Fails, Tamra Gilbertson and Oscar Reyes, Critical Currents no. 7, November 2009

Carbon Trade Watch has released a new publication by Tamra Gilbertson and Oscar Reyes that outlines the limitations of an approach to tackling climate change which redefines the problem to fit the assumptions of neoliberal economics. It demonstrates that the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, the world’s largest carbon market, has consistently failed to ‘cap’ emissions, while the UN’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) routinely favours environmentally ineffective and socially unjust projects. This is illustrated with case studies of CDM projects in Brazil, Indonesia, India and Thailand where the publication argues that off-sets projects, even those that promote renewable energy, will not be a solution to climate change.

Chapter 4 examines REDD and Indigenous Peoples. Solutions proposed in Chapter 5 include measures to secure land tenure for Indigenous Peoples’ and forest-dependent communities.

“…Simplistic schemes to grow money on trees represent a significant setback for the complex work of protecting forests through defending the territorial and other rights of Indigenous Peoples and forest communities – who have currently and historically done the most to protect forest ecosystems.” – Extract from Carbon Trading – How it Works and Why it Fails

Download Carbon Trading – How it Works and Why It Fails[pdf]…

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More than 100 stakeholders have been involved in a collaborative initiative facilitated by The Forests Dialogue (TFD) to build an effective international mechanism for tackling the climate, community and biodiversity issues associated with deforestation. The publication “Investing in REDD-plus” reflects unique consensus amongst forest stakeholders across business, environmental and scientific sectors and from indigenous peoples and forest-based communities, who met in a stream of intensive dialogues this year.

The report recommends that REDD-plus should be designed as a performance-based mechanism that achieves real CO2 emission reductions by reducing deforestation and degradation, and through conservation, sustainable forest management and the enhancement of carbon stocks. A phased approach will enable REDD-plus to address the drivers of deforestation according to country-specific circumstances. Each phase of REDD-plus should be funded through a portfolio of financial resources that make optimal and coordinated use of both markets and funds, as well as other sources of finance. Safeguards must guarantee equitable participation and distribution mechanisms for indigenous peoples and local communities as well as biodiversity conservation.

” REDD-plus projects must demonstrate: … Social integrity—by recognizing, protecting and respecting the rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities and ensuring that they can develop their livelihoods and share the benefits of REDD-plus” – Extract from Investing in REDD-plus

Download Investing in REDD-plus: Consensus on frameworks for the financing and implementation of REDD-plus [pdf]…

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Counting the cost, forest credits and their effect on carbon markets by Kate Dooley, Forests and the European Union Resource Network (FERN), Avoiding Deforestation and Degradation Briefing Note 6, June 2009

fern cost countingThis 6 page briefing note looks at recent research into the impact of trading forest carbon credits on carbon markets, and the subsequent effect on forests and the climate. It reviews research that is increasingly showing that attributing a price to forest carbon will not be enough to save the forests or protect the climate and may lead to massive land grabs which negatively affect forest peoples. The note concludes that direct policy reform will have the most substantial effect on reducing carbon emissions and that including REDD in carbon markets will either lower the price of carbon, or not raise the funds required to make a significant impact on deforestation rates.

“A lower carbon price will reduce the incentive to invest in low carbon technology, leading to higher emissions and making a peak by 2015 and drastic decline in emissions thereafter out of reach.” – Extract from Counting the cost, forest credits and their effect on carbon markets

Download Counting the cost, forest credits and their effect on carbon markets [pdf]…

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June 2009 Coalition Statement at the Bonn Climate Talks

ClimateTalksA broad coalition of activist groups released a consensus statement at the U.N. climate talks in Bonn Germany stating that a global framework on climate change must immediately halt deforestation and industrial logging of the world’s old-growth forests, while protecting the rights of forest communities and indigenous groups.

“Climate change mitigation and sustainable forest management must be based on different mindsets with full respect for Nature, and not on carbon offset mechanisms. Public funding mechanisms that ensure environmental integrity and equitable distribution of funds must be made established.” – Coalition Statement

The coalition statement calls upon industrialized countries to cut their greenhouse gas emissions 45 percent by 2020 and 95 percent by 2050 as an “absolute minimum” in addition to providing “sufficient financial and technological support to enable developing countries to halt the destruction of forests and other ecosystems.” The targets are well above those laid out by industrialized countries, which generally fall in the 15-30 percent range by 2020, and 80 percent by 2050.

Read the Statement at MongaBay [html]…

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Dialogue on REDD Finance Mechanisms The Forests Dialogue’s consensus-based Statement on Forests and Climate Change

beyond reddBeginning in December 2007, The Forests Dialogue (TFD) has led a multi-stakeholder dialogue process focused on developing a clear, unified message and common set of principles illustrating the factors and conditions necessary to maximize forests and people’s ability to mitigate and adapt to climate change. The initiative has involved more than 275 diverse leaders representing all stakeholder groups from around the world. The Forests Dialogue on REDD Finance Mechanisms was held in New York from 25-26 April 2009. A summary report was prepared by the co-Chairs Jan McAlpine (UNFF-S) and James Griffiths (WBCSD) with Stewart Maginnis (IUCN).

The concerns of Indigenous Peoples were highlighted with respect to the extent to which their interests will be represented in the Copenhagen negotiations and in subsequent implementation of post-2012 REDD arrangements. Whether and how REDD finance mechanisms could i) adequately
address conflicts between de jure and de facto traditional land tenure arrangements and ii) accommodate the principle of Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) were two elements that were highlighted as being of particular concern. Dialogue participants noted the importance of acknowledging and addressing these issues within any REDD financing arrangement.

Concern was also voiced by some groups with respect to the prospect of ensuring fair distribution of REDD payments. It was brought to the meeting’s attention that the majority of forest communities live in situations where at least some of their rights to benefit from forest land and resources are contested. It was also highlighted that the interests of these groups have to be taken into account not only for ethical reasons but also to avoid the types of future conflict that could jeopardize the potential contribution of forests to stabilizing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases (GHGs).

“Perhaps the most resounding consensus reached in New York was the importance, from a climate mitigation perspective, of ensuring that REDD plus is properly integrated into post-2012 arrangements and the value of ensuring such measures are harmonized with policy frameworks that promote Sustainable Forest Management … [This] presents an opportunity to advance forest-related consultation and decision-making processes to include key stakeholder groups, with particular emphasis on forest rights-holders (i.e. Indigenous Peoples, Forest Communities, individual family forest owners & small-holders as well as other categories of land-owners).” — Co-Chairs Report, Dialogue on REDD Finance Mechanisms

TFD has also produced a comprehensive consensus Statement on Forests and Climate Change titled “Beyond REDD: the Role of Forests in Climate Change” that includes significant references to indigenous peoples’ rights, and lays out 5 guiding principles and over 100 suggested actions for stakeholders including government climate negotiators. This document also includes 5 Briefing Notes.

Download the 58 page Beyond REDD: the Role of Forests in Climate Change report [pdf]… or Review the meeting materials [website]…

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