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UNFCCC Conference results present both opportunities and challenges
The results of the UNFCCC Conference in Bali in December demonstrate the international consensus of the importance of forests relating to climate change, confirmed by the international agreement in “Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation” (REDD). Despite this fact, the implications for forest communities around the world remain unclear.
Among others, this issue was discussed at “Forest Day”, an event organized by CIFOR and the Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF). The event brought pre-eminent forest stakeholders, agenda setters and policymakers from around the world, and included the participation of IUCN and ICRAF, among others. In a summary of the event, a committee representing the CPF delineated various points of consensus for the UNFCCC, including: 1) It is essential to clarify both land rights and legal rights to carbon in order to ensure an equitable distribution of REDD benefits; 2) Governance must be strengthened to mitigate new risks to the development of local stakeholders; and 3) The mistakes of the Clean Development Mechanism – high transaction costs – should not be repeated.
It is evident that this new support for the conservation of tropical forests presents new opportunities for forest communities. However, without pro-poor policy reforms, the impacts of the new program could be harmful to the communities that depend on forests for their livelihoods.
Posted By Andrew Davis at 8:56am on January 11, 2008
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