The November meeting of the REDD+ Partnership in Lima will probably be its last. Despite the fact that the REDD+ Partnership has little to show for four years of meetings, and more than US$6 million spent, a recent assessment report describes it as a “moderate success”.
In a recent message to REDD+ Partners and observers, the co-chairs of the REDD+ Partnership write, “We work under the assumption that the Partnership work program ends in Lima.” Will the REDD+ Partnership close down after its meeting in November 2014?
In Cancun, the REDD+ Partnership has managed to continue its spectacular record of sheer incompetence. At the beginning of its meeting in Cancun, the REDD+ Partnership had a draft Work Programme for 2011-2012. All it had to do was approve the Work Programme. Yet the REDD+ Partnership, or more specifically the Papua New Guinea co-chair Federica Bietta, has managed to screw up this apparently simple task.
After two weeks of meetings in Nagoya, Japan, “a new era of living in harmony was born and new global alliance to protect life on earth,” at least according to Ahmed Djoghlaf, the Convention on Biodiveristy’s Executive Secretary, in a press release. George Monbiot, writing in yesterday’s Guardian isn’t convinced: “The evidence suggests that we’ve been conned.” There are no binding obligations in the strategic plan agreed in Nagoya.
Yesterday, Greenpeace presented the Papua New Guinea government with a Golden Chainsaw award “for asking for REDD money whilst continuing with rampant logging, failing to respect indigenous rights and denying NGO input into REDD discussions”. The award was accepted by Federica Bietta, who is representing the PNG government at the UN Convention on Biodiversity meeting in Nagoya, Japan.
Even the most optimistic observers could not help noticing that the REDD+ Partnership became totally dysfunctional during last week’s UN climate meeting in Tianjin, China. The meetings were spent arguing about the agenda and civil society participation. By the end of the week, little or no progress had been made. The only important decision taken was to cancel the Partnership’s next meeting.
On 7 September 2010, 34* NGOs from 20 different countries sent a letter to the co-chairs of the Interim REDD+ Partnership. The letter provides comments on the Partnership’s draft Workplan and denounces “the protracted lack of political will to ensure proper participation of civil society and indigenous peoples’ organisations in the processes of the Interim REDD+ Partnership.”
The Interim REDD+ Partnership started badly in March 2010, when it held a closed door meeting in Paris. Two months later, in Oslo, where the Partnership was officially formed, the Partnership appeared to be taking at least some notice of the views of civil society and indigenous peoples. But the members of the Partnership appear to be suffering from collective amnesia.
On 14-15 July 2010, a meeting of the Interim REDD+ Partnership took place in Brasilia. The co-chairs of the Partnership sent an invitation dated 6 July 2010 (pdf file 48.1 KB) to an apparently randomly selected list of development and environment NGOs, businesses and research organisations. The email stated that there was space in the meeting for 12 organisations to send 2 people.
Perhaps not surprisingly, the billion dollar forest deal between Norway and Indonesia is proving to be controversial in Indonesia. The government now has to play an impossible balancing act – claiming to be serious about addressing deforestation, while reassuring forest destroyers that their profits will not be affected.
Here’s a copy of the Letter of Intent (pdf file 341 KB*) signed yesterday by Norway’s Minister of the Environment and International Development Erik Solheim and Indonesia’s Foreign Minister RM Marty M. Natalegawa. One billion dollars sounds like a lot of money, but it’s worth putting in perspective.
Yesterday, Norway’s Minister of the Environment and International Development Erik Solheim and Indonesia’s Foreign Minister RM Marty M. Natalegawa signed a US$1 billion deal aimed at reducing deforestation in Indonesia. There are few details about the deal available so far. The agreement itself has not yet been made public – when it is REDD-Monitor will post it here.
A group of NGOs have produced a statement on the Paris-Oslo process, criticising the lack of transparency and participation. “A bad REDD system is worse than no system at all for the world’s climate, its forests and its people,” they write in the statement. “Unless underlying problems are addressed, so-called fast-start financing would be a false start for REDD.”
Last week, REDD-Monitor received a reply from Hans Brattskar, the Director of Norway’s Climate and Forest Initiative, to the post “Indigenous Peoples excluded from French-Norwegian partnership on forests“.