The UN-REDD Programme is currently in the process of appointing four observers from Civil Society Organisations to the UN-REDD Programme Policy Board. The CSO representatives will consist of one each from Africa, Asia‐Pacific, Latin America‐Caribbean and North America/Europe.
An anonymous article in the September 2011 UN-REDD newsletter paints a rosy picture of REDD-readiness in the Republic of Congo. An anonymous response, sent to REDD-Monitor yesterday, argues that the UN-REDD article ignores the on-going destruction of the Republic of Congo’s forests.
Uganda’s president, Yoweri Museveni, recently announced that he would allow the destruction of 7,100 hectares of the Mabira Forest to make way for sugarcane plantations. If REDD is to mean anything in Uganda, it has to provide some sort of mechanism for preventing this sort of destruction. So far, there is no sign that this is the case.
From 28 February to 2 March 2011, Green Concern for Development and Environmental Rights Action (Friends of the Earth Nigeria) organised a forum on Climate Change, REDD and Forest Dependent Community Rights in Cross River State, Nigeria. The forum allowed for a debate on different viewpoints on REDD – and allowed communities to respond to government officials.
In March 2009, the UN-REDD Programme Policy Board approved US$4.4 million for Viet Nam’s National UN-REDD Programme. UN-REDD chose two districts in Lam Dong, – Di Linh and Lam Ha – to pilot REDD+ in Vietnam. From January to June 2010, the programme carried out a process of Free, Prior and Informed Consent in the two districts. There are at least two versions of what actually took place.
“Forests under Threat,” was the title of a recent article in the Phnom Penh Post. It’s a good article, but the headline could have been this year’s entry for the Basil Fawlty Award for stating the bleeding obvious. Cambodia’s forests, what’s left of them after years of destructive logging (legal and illegal), industrial agrobusiness and mining concessions, are among the most threatened on the planet.
Last week, the UN-REDD policy board approved almost US$6.4 million for Papua New Guinea’s National Joint Programme. However, in a letter to the co-chairs of the UN-REDD Policy Board, the PNG Ecoforestry Forum lists 16 conditions aimed at improving the National Joint Programme (posted below).
Over the past few weeks, a series of regional consultations have taken place on Indonesia’s National REDD+ Strategy. Meetings have taken place in Java, Lombok, Aceh, and Central Sulawesi. A meeting is currently taking place in Papua. A series of drafts of the National REDD+ Strategy have been made available in Indonesian and English. On 24 September 2010, Draft 1 Revised was released and comments can be made until 25 October 2010.
A June 2009 confidential memorandum from the consulting firm McKinsey to the PNG government has been posted on the PNGExposed Blog. In the memo, McKinsey was asking the PNG government for US$2.2 million for four months work to produce a draft “National REDD and Climate Change Plan” before the Copenhagen meeting.
On 22 September 2010, at the UN General Assembly in New York, Norway and Indonesia plan to upgrade the billion dollar forest deal from a letter of intent to a legally binding agreement. On the same day that this was announced, Reuters reported that Wandojo Siswanto, one of the forestry officials who helped negotiate the Norway deal is a suspect in a multi-million dollar corruption case.
On 18 August 2010, Environmental Rights Action (Friends of the Earth Nigeria, the country’s leading environment group) organised a meeting on REDD in Nigeria, together with the Rainforest Research Development and GREENCODE. The meeting produced a statement, signed by 18 NGOs. “Forests and REDD must be out of carbon markets,” is the first of a list of resolutions included in the statement.
The Australian carbon trading company Shift2Neutral aims to become “the leading neutraliser of carbon emissions in the world”. The company appeared to come closer realising its aim this week when Reuters reported that Shift2Neutral “signed a deal aimed at protecting tropical forests in the Democratic Republic of Congo as well as boosting renewable energy there”.