Features & Commentary
Republic of the Congo Signs its UN-REDD National Programme
At the UN-REDD Programme Policy Board last month, Republic of the Congo became the 15th UN-REDD partner country to sign its National Programme, kicking off REDD+ implementation in the country.
By : Georges Claver Boundzanga
The UN-REDD National Programme document to support the REDD+ process in the Republic of the Congo was signed on Friday, 26 October 2012, in Brazzaville. It contains the basic technical and financial components of the UN-REDD Programme's support to the Republic of the Congo's REDD+ process, and lays out the cooperation framework between the government of the Republic of the Congo and each of the Participating UN Organizations to the UN-REDD Programme (FAO, UNDP and UNEP).
The Programme is based on the country's REDD+ strategic document, also known as a Readiness Preparation Proposal (R-PP), approved in 2010 by the government and the World Bank's Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF). An improved version of the R-PP was presented and also approved by the UN-REDD Programme Policy Board in March 2012. The UN-REDD Programme's support offers a perfect complement to the government's action and is fully in line with the support provided by the FCPF.
To date, funds secured for the national REDD+ process include US$600,000 from the government of the Republic of the Congo; US$3.4 million from the FCPF; and US$4 million from the UN-REDD Programme.
These funds will help cover the bulk of costs associated with the REDD+ readiness phase (including activities related to implementation, the national REDD+ strategy, establishing baselines and MRV systems).
Notably, the UN-REDD Programme will supply both technical and funding support to the national REDD+ process over a period of three years. Congo's UN-REDD Programme is part of the national REDD+ process getting the country ready to implement its national REDD+ strategy by 2015, with a view to building a green economy. UN-REDD Programme support aims to help build national capacity for organization, dialogue, strategic analysis and technical assistance to support the REDD+ mechanism.
Republic of the Congo's UN-REDD National Programme pursues three specific outcomes:
1. A well managed and fully participatory national REDD+ process;
2. The country is ready for the implementation of structural reforms and REDD+ investments, taking into account safeguards;
3. A comprehensive system for information and monitoring of REDD+ is functioning.
The focus of Programme implementation will include:
- Supporting national REDD+ institutions and devolution of the REDD+ process to subnational entities (three pilot "departments");
- Creating a reference level for REDD+ and developing a measurement, reporting and verification (MRV) system;
- A programme of small grants and support to the development of pilot projects in order to foster nationally-appropriate experiences and help civil society stakeholders rapidly realize REDD+ potential on the ground;
- Supporting the Ministry of Forest Economy and Sustainable Development to steer investments towards a green economy, and put REDD+ on the national path towards sustainable development;
- Preparing priority REDD+ investments based on strategic options;
- Developing an effective and transparent REDD+ implementation framework, including a national registry for REDD+ activities and a social and environmental risk management and monitoring system.
In line with the FCPF, the UN-REDD Programme's support will enable the REDD+ National Coordination in charge of steering the REDD+ process in the Republic of the Congo to make the country REDD+ ready by 2015.
|Georges Claver Boundzanga is the National REDD+ Coordinator in Republic of the Congo's Ministry of Forest Economy and Sustainable Development.