US$15.2 Million Approved for 5 Countries at the UN-REDD Policy Board Meeting
Cambodia, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay and Solomon Islands talk about their REDD+ efforts and the value of their partnership with the UN-REDD Programme, after the UN-REDD Programme Policy Board recently approved funding to support their national REDD+ efforts.
During its fifth Policy Board meeting from 4-5 November 2010 in Washington, D.C., the UN-REDD Programme approved US$15.2 million in funding for national programmes in Cambodia, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, the Philippines and Solomon Islands, bringing the total amount of funding for UN-REDD National Programmes to US$51.4 million.
The Policy Board allocated US$3 million for Cambodia, US$6.4 million for Papua New Guinea and US$4.7 million for Paraguay and provided further guidance and recommendations to the full National Programmes they presented. These Programmes lay out their REDD+ readiness plans including setting up governance, MRV and monitoring systems, safeguarding the multiple benefits of forests and ensuring stakeholder engagement. Initial national programmes in the Philippines and Solomon Islands were allocated US$500,000 and US$550,000 respectively.
Omaliss Keo, REDD Focal Point, Cambodia
"I think it is quite urgent for Cambodia to implement REDD, as there is no sustainable financing in place in Cambodia, and there is also some problems with illegal logging, and also there is a lack of engagement with local communities... REDD is about integration of local communities, and reforestation so I think it is a very good mechanism that will work quite well in Cambodia.
The value of working with the UN-REDD Programme is that these UN agencies (FAO, UNDP and UNEP) have a very long history of success in working in different fields. UNDP works with local communities, governance and a lot of development things, FAO works very strongly and cooperatively with the Cambodia government on forestry issues, and UNEP is very strong in co-benefits, biodiversity and bio-life conservation, so you see these are very good opportunities for Cambodia to engage with them to gain technical support and help us to make REDD work in Cambodia."
Gwen Sissiou, Director, MRV, Office of Climate Change and Development, Papua New Guinea
"PNG is at a stage where we have come a long way, we have basically got a climate compatible strategy in place, we realized nine months ago going into Copenhagen that we needed to address REDD in a more holistic manner in terms of how it fits in an overall climate change strategy... We have a full program for consultation happening on the ground... we have identified MRV as a very key component... So we believe we are very much in a position for implementation of pilot projects for REDD+.
The UN has always been very strong in PNG and also in the region, in helping to come with the technical, with the capacity building support which we would not otherwise get from perhaps the private sector and even other development corporations. For REDD+, for this phase at least it’s all about readiness, it’s all about capacity building, and it’s all about enabling environments, and we believe that the UN is the institution to help with that."
Rodrigo Mussi, Strategic Planning Director, Environment Secretary, Paraguay
"At the moment, Paraguay is in the readiness phase; we are building the National Joint Programme, which is why we have established a strategic partnership with Paraguay’s Forest Institute, the Environment Secretariat and the Coordinator of Indigenous Peoples Self Determination in Paraguay. These are the three most important and strategic actors that will allow REDD+ to advance."
Hipolito Acevei, President, Coordinating Organization for the Self-Determination of Indigenous Peoples (CAPI), Paraguay
"Traditional Indigenous Peoples need to cooperate (in REDD+ readiness efforts) because it is for the well being of everyone, for humanity and we should not be kept aside. We have to be part of REDD in order to build it jointly because there is more than documents involved in this process, there is also the permanent and constant existence of our people."
Chanel Iroi, Under-Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Solomon Islands
"Deforestation is one of the problems that is challenging to us, because the forestry sector is one of the main revenues for the country, and at the moment the amount of forest being cut is very unsustainable... so that’s why it is very important to look at REDD issues as one of the alternatives to tackle this problem.
We believe that the UN-REDD Programme is very valuable to us... because it certainly can help us in tackling the problem of reducing emissions with the country and we look forward in working together with the UN-REDD Programme."
The critical funds allocated to these five countries support the capacity of national governments to prepare and implement national REDD+ strategies with the active involvement of all stakeholders, including indigenous peoples and other forest-dependent communities, with the ultimate goal of protecting, better managing and wisely using their forest resources, contributing to the global fight against climate change. With these new funding allocations, the UN-REDD Programme is now working with 29 partner countries across Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America, of which 12 are receiving direct support to National Programmes.