Features & Commentary
Update on REDD+ in Solomon Islands
Faced with high rates of deforestation that call for urgent action, the Solomon Islands continues its ongoing REDD+ implementation efforts with a half-day training event on measurement, reporting, verification (MRV) and monitoring for REDD+.
By: Aki Kono and Matieu Henry
As part of the inception phase of the UN-REDD Initial National Programme in the Solomon Islands, a half-day training event on MRV and monitoring was organized at the end of October in Honiara to provide an overview of national MRV and monitoring systems, as well as various capacity, data and resource requirements for the implementation of such systems. The event was attended by technical staff members of the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Disaster Management and Meteorology, Ministry of Forests and Research, experts from the UN-REDD Programme and several NGOs, including the World Wildlife Fund, Live & Learn and The Nature Conservancy.
|Participants at the Solomon Islands' recent MRV and Monitoring training included staff members of the Ministry of Environment along with other international experts and NGO representatives. |
REDD+ in Solomon Islands will be implemented through the following three phases: i) development of national strategies or action plans, policies and measures and capacity building; ii) implementation of national policies and measures and national strategies or action plans; and iii) results- based actions that should be fully measured, reported and verified.
However, at the current rate of deforestation and forest degradation, the Solomon Islands may not have much time left before the country completely loses its forests. This should generate a strong sense of urgency to address all illegal and unsustainable logging and plantation practices in the country. The REDD+ readiness process supported by the UN-REDD Initial National Programme will assist the country in meeting this challenge through, among others, helping to develop MRV and Monitoring capacities and systems in order to establish and implement appropriate policies and measures against those illegal and unsustainable practices.
In addition, stricter control on logging and plantations in insular Southeast Asian over the decades has resulted in increased logging and plantation activities in the Pacific Melanesia. With limited capacities and resources to ensure sustainable practices, the Solomon Islands has been severely affected by this trend. In addressing this challenge through REDD+, one of the most cost-effective strategies is through regional cooperation with neighboring countries in Melanesia, to collaboratively build the necessary capacities and share information, knowledge as well as resources to establish and implement appropriate policies and measures in each country. Such an approach is particularly critical for those technical and costly areas like MRV and Monitoring. In this regards, the currently proposed regional approach among the Pacific countries on REDD+ would be very timely for the Solomon Islands.
|Aki Kono is a technical advisor with UNDP's regional team in Bangkok, supporting UN-REDD Programme partner countries in Asia-Pacific. |
|Matieu Henry is a MRV expert for the UN-REDD Programme, based in Rome. |