in Uncategorized

REDD in the news: Poznan week one, 1-7 December 2008

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on StumbleUpon

REDD in the news: Poznan week one, 1-7 December 2008

REDD was one of the main themes covered in the media reporting on the first week in Poznan. While there was much discussion about REDD in side events and outside the formal UN process with a flurry of reports produced on REDD, there was little or no progress in the negotiations themselves.

1 December 2008
Discourse: The bright side of the global crisis: Fewer emissions
Interview with Indonesia’s State Minister for the Environment Rachmat Witoela in the Jakarta Post.

We will push agendas of demonstration activities for the reduction emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD), voluntary carbon market, adaptation fund, financial mechanism and technology transfers before 2012 when the Kyoto protocol commitment ends

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Brazil pledges to cut Amazon destruction in half
Reuters article about Brazil’s plans to reduce deforestation in the Amazon.

Setting its first such target after years of global criticism, Brazil will aim to reduce clearing of the world’s largest rain forest to an annual 5,850 sq km (2,260 sq miles), by 2018, about half the recent rate.

“This plan improves Brazil’s image, we’ll have more moral authority internationally,” Environment Minister Carlos Minc told reporters . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Is the Road Through Poznan Paved with Voluntary Carbon?
Ecosystem Marketplace article about the latest developments in REDD – mainly the Voluntary Carbon Standard’s (VCS) rules for Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use (AFOLU).

By providing REDD guidance, as well as the framework to fold in a large variety of land-use practices under the same standard, VCS has introduced the most comprehensive approach to thorny issues of leakage and permanence in forestry projects. The approach in the voluntary market sets the stage to bring forestry into the international fold. It also demonstrates the work yet to come.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Adaptation for tropical forests, tropical forests for adaptation
“Climate change could have a devastating effect on the world’s forests and the nearly 1 billion people who depend on them for their livelihoods” says the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) in a press release about a new report.

“The people living in forests are highly dependent on forest goods and services and are often very vulnerable socioeconomically,” says Bruno Locatelli, a CIFOR scientist and lead author of the report. “They usually have a much more intimate understanding of their forests than anyone else, but the unprecedented rates of climate change will almost certainly jeopardise their ability to adapt to new conditions. They will need help.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

CBD Expert Group on Biodiversity and Climate Change Publishes Draft Findings
The first meeting of the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group (AHTEG) on Biodiversity and Climate Change of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), took place from 17-21 November 2008, in London.

The draft findings of the meeting address: climate change and biodiversity interactions; impacts of climate change on biodiversity; biodiversity and climate change mitigation through land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF) activities including Reduced Emissions from Deforestation in Developing Countries (REDD); and biodiversity and climate change mitigation through renewable energy technologies and geo-engineering.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2 December 2008
PNG Advocates Voluntary Market For Carbon Credits
Pacific Magazine report on the PNG government’s position on REDD, and contrasts it with that of the PNG NGO Eco-Forestry Forum.

“As it is now, the landowners, one of the three important stakeholders in the proposed Reduced Emission from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) initiative and generally the people of Papua New Guinea have not been consulted.

“It’s OK to go and market REDD to the international community but if the people at home are not aware of what it does to the environment, then I think there is a lot of inconsistency on the part of the PNG Government,” said Ken Mondiai, head of the vocal Eco-Forestry Forum in Papua New Guinea.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Debate: What can save the rainforests?
Radio France International’s Brent Gregston discusses rainforest issues with Jean Bakouma of WWF France, responsible for sustainable development in the Congo basin; Andrew Mitchell, head of the Global Canopy Programme; and Greenpeace forest campaigner, Jerome Frignet.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Developing Countries (REDD): A Guide for Indigenous Peoples
The United Nations University has produced a 100-page guide to REDD, which it describes as “a short guide for indigenous communities to climate change and to the current international debate surrounding REDD”.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

REDD e-Newsletter
The Convention on Biodiversity has released its second REDD e-Newsleter: available here.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

3 December 2008
Brazil falls short with forest emission reduction ambitions
WWF press release about Brazil’s proposals to decrease deforestation by more than 70% by 2014-2017. Carlos Alberto de Mattos Scaramuzza, Conservation Director at WWF-Brazil is critical of the plans.

Under the scenario defined in the plan, the average area of Amazon forest cleared each year would be 5,742 km2 by 2014-17.

“That´s bigger than the US state of Rhode Island,” says Scaramuzza. “The CO2 released from clearing this area of Amazon forest would be roughly equivalent to the current annual emissions of Canada.”

Together with eight other environmental NGOs, WWF-Brazil has proposed zero deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon by 2015. According to Scaramuzza: “This goal is achievable if key actors—ranging from indigenous peoples to ranchers—are compensated for conserving the forest and thereby avoiding deforestation.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Rain Forests to Headline at Poznan…
Bill Chameides writing in the Huffington Post about REDD at Poznan.

Carbon markets, however, represent a possible solution for providing a potential new source of income for rain forest nations and preserving a precious resource to boot. A global cap-and-trade regime could allow industrialized nations to essentially buy time and still address climate change. While overhauling energy infrastructures, rich countries could pay rain forest nations to keep their forests in place, reducing CO2 emissions.

So why has this not happened? Good question. For reasons unclear to me the Kyoto Protocol did not address deforestation — an appalling oversight given that deforestation makes up 20 percent of global emissions.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Greens fear inclusion of forestry credits in EU ETS
Point Carbon (subscription needed) reports that “A new compromise document introduced by the French EU presidency may allow installations covered by the bloc’s emissions trading scheme (ETS) to use offset credits generated from forestry projects to meet reduction targets.” Includes this as the only quotation:

“Given our inability to accurately measure and monitor forest carbon content, the lack of clarity around who actually has legal rights to the trees in many tropical forest countries and the danger of flooding the market with cheap forest carbon credits, bringing forests into the ETS risks creating another sub-prime crisis,” said Nikki Reisch of the Rainforest Foundation UK, in a joint statement released by four NGOs.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Native Peoples Out in Cold at Warming Meet
IPS report on Indigenous Peoples’ role (or lack of one) in the climate discussions. Includes quotations from Mark Lattimer of the Minority Rights Group International, Ben Powless, an indigenous rights activist from Canada, and Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, chairperson of the U.N. Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.

“The U.N. process is flawed as communities that have first-hand experience of dealing with climate change are not allowed to participate,” said Lattimer. “It is incomprehensible how governments agree targets without the input of those who face the impacts of climate change.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

4 December 2008
AOSIS Rejects IPCC’s Post Kyoto Proposal
Report in Pacific Magazine, including quotations from Tuvalu’s international climate change adviser, Dr Ian Fry:

“There is a need first for mandatory accounting of emissions from forests, grazing land and cropland. There is no need for the expansion of LULUCF into the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM).”

A number of Pacific AOSIS members are pursuing the Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) initiative, led by Papua New Guinea, which comes under LULUCF umbrella.

Papua New Guinea, joined by a coalition of 53 rainforest nations is lobbying for REDD to become a CDM mechanism by 2009.

“LULUCF will not reduce emissions as required by the Clean Development Mechanism initiative.” Dr Fry said.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Green Banks: Paying Countries to Keep their Trees
Time magazine on the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park in Bolivia.

[I]n 1997 TNC [The Nature Conservancy], U.S. utility companies American Electric Power (AEP) and PacifiCorp, and oil major BP Amoco paid Bolivia $10.8 million for the credits represented by all that carbon. In return, the government simply has to ensure that the forest remains standing and healthy for the next 30 years. It’s called avoided deforestation, and projects like this may represent one of the most promising ways to simultaneously slow the destruction of tropical forests and the pace of climate change — if we can get it right.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Rich, poor in dispute over rainforest cash
Reuters reports on Brazil’s opposition to carbon offsets.

Brazil ruled out on Thursday letting rich countries offset their greenhouse gas emissions by helping to save the Amazon rain forest, an idea under active discussion by the European Union.
[ . . . ]
“Brazil has always been against offsets in forestry,” said Sergio Serra, Brazil’s ambassador for climate change.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

5 December 2008
PNG’s 13-Member Team Largest From The Pacific At Climate Summit
With 13 members, Papua New Guinea’s delegation is the largest from the Pacific.

The PNG country delegation currently in Poznan, Poland will be joined by their Minister of Forests, Belden Namah who will take part in the high level segment of the 14th Conference of the Parties.

“We have five million plus people back home. We need to bring something home for them, so that’s the main thing we are here for. If there is another opportunity like voluntary markets or the clean development mechanism, we will work with them, we are optimistic. We need to bring something back home for them.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Little progress on avoided deforestation at climate meeting in Poland
Mongabay on the lack of progress in the REDD discussions at Poznan.

“Despite a clear mandate from the Bali Action plan to develop new policies to stem tropical deforestation, COP14 has not devised a clear plan to develop specific solutions,” said John O. Niles, director of the Tropical Forest Group. “Rainforests have been largely discussed in a UN working group on science and technical matters for three years. In this time, approximately 75 million acres of tropical forests have been cut. Negotiators are making good progress on scientific methods. But with only one year until Copenhagen, the UN must pass clear text on when and how it will develop specific financial instruments to help developing countries solve deforestation.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Climate Change Reduction or ‘Green Global Welfare’?
The New York Times on a new CIFOR report “Moving ahead with REDD: Issues, options and implications” and Alan Oxley‘s World Growth (which argues that logging forests is will bring development). Oxley, who has worked as a consultant for egregious companies such as Rimbunan Hijau and Gunns, is infamous for this sort of nonsense:

One such group, World Growth, disputes that deforestation is generating nearly 20 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, and argues that when timber is processed into wood products or paper, as the majority of logged timber is, the carbon remains stored — even when dumped into a landfill.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Climate Hopes and Fears at Poznan
ENS report on the Poznan negotiations.

UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner said, “At a time of scarce financial resources and economic concerns, every dollar, Euro or rupee needs to deliver double, even triple dividends. Intelligent investment in forests is a key example where climate benefits and ecosystem benefits can be achieved in one transaction.”

Steiner said a successful REDD mechanism must ensure that local and indigenous people can benefit.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

REDD faces challenges but can succeed, says report
Mongabay on a new report by CIFOR: “Moving ahead with REDD: Issues, options and implications“. The report “reviews the challenges facing REDD and makes policy recommendations to make the mechanism more agreeable to climate negotiators.”

Among these include involving local people as beneficiaries of REDD projects; taking a ‘nested approach’ rather than a national approach to REDD implementation; incorporating degradation into REDD in order to include countries where deforestation may be low but degradation high; developing a protocol for ensuring that reductions in emissions are permanent; and establishing a strong and independent verification system to ensure that emission reductions are real.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

6 December 2008
Poznan press briefing for the first week
Videos of Yvo de Boer’s press briefings from the first week in Poznan.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

EU Puts Up $1.3B Annually For Climate Change
Pacific Magazine reports on EU plans to fund REDD.

The European Union has announced that it will set aside up to €1 billion (US$1.3b) per year for reduced emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD) in developing countries in an effort to address climate change.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Intact forests could be worth US$580M yearly
The Stabroek News reports on Guyana’s “glossy 33-page document” on REDD: “Creating Incentives to Avoid Deforestation“.

President Bharrat Jagdeo yesterday unveiled Guyana’s position on avoided deforestation and argued that the REDD mechanism must back compensatory economic alternatives which, based on calculations, could be worth US$580M per annum to this country.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

AWG-LCA Meeting on Enhanced Mitigation and its Implementation
Report on discussions about REDD at the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action (AWG-LCA) contact group meeting on the mitigation actions and its implementation, by the blog What’s with the climate?

Saudi Arabia stated that they cannot support REDD being so fast tracked.

On the REDD issue Japan commends all countries and appeals them to keep the momentum of workshop in Accra.

France on behalf of EU (European Union) feels that developed coutries should take lead in emission cuts and national mitigation programmes as a vehichle to encourage others.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Brazil’s Decision on Deforestation Draws Praise
According to the Washington Post Brazil’s plan to reduce deforestation “was hailed by environmentalists Friday as a significant goal for a major polluting country”.

“This is an enormously important step,” Stephan Schwartzman, an Amazon expert with the Environmental Defense Fund, said by telephone from a climate change conference in Poland. “This is the first time that a major developing country, whose greenhouse gas emissions are a substantial part of the problem, has stepped up and made a commitment to bring down its total emissions. Brazil has set the standard. Now we want to see the U.S. and President Obama come up to it.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Biodiversity Hotspots Are Also Major Carbon Sinks
Science Daily on a new atlas by UN Environment Programme. This was also reported in The Hindu. UNEP’s Executive Director Achim Steiner said:

[B]y pinpointing where high densities of carbon overlap with high levels of biodiversity, the atlas spotlights where governments and investors can deal with two crises for the price of one. This does not include the other benefits from investing in forests ecosystem ‘infrastructure’, from stabilizing soils to conserving and boosting local and regional water supplies.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on StumbleUpon

Leave a Reply