Events Convened on Tuesday, 2
December, 2008 Critical Analysis of REDD
Presented by Friends of the Earth


This event
provided a review of the concept of reduced emissions from deforestation and
forest degradation (REDD), and gave several indigenous peoples and
non-governmental organizations the opportunity to discuss the potential
pitfalls of this concept.

Estebancio Castro Diaz, Kuna Yala Nation, Panama, expressed concern that the
inclusion of REDD in global carbon markets will impact indigenous peoples’
rights to their traditional territories, and said that any such initiative
should be based on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous
Peoples. He lamented that the FAO’s definition of "forest" includes
monoculture plantations, and that REDD proposals may not support the
traditional practice of shifting cultivation.

Simone Lovera, Global Forest Coalition, stressed that there are numerous
international agreements designed to conserve forests, including the Convention
on Biological Diversity, but that they have never been fully implemented, and
called on developed countries to fulfill their funding commitments. She
stressed that REDD is fundamentally about governance, that indigenous
participation needs to be more than lipservice, and that there is a risk of
elite capture of resources.

Kittisak Rattanakrajangsri, International Alliance of Indigenous and Tribal
People of Tropical Forests, highlighted a recent meeting on REDD held in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
He said that REDD threatens to relocate indigenous people, either forcibly or
by governments removing services, such as schools and hospitals.

Samuel Nah Ndobe, Center for Environment and Development, presented on Congo Basin
forest governance issues, noting the high levels of conflict over natural
resources in the region. He said that structural adjustments required by the
World Bank in Cameroon
had resulted in 50% of timber resources being allocated to timber concessions,
with little allocated to communities, and that land rights were only recognized
if the land was cleared and cultivated.

Kate Horner, Friends of the Earth-US, expressed concern that REDD could benefit
those historically responsible for deforestation, while punishing
forest-dependant people who have maintained them. She said that basing REDD on
flawed methodologies and predictive scenarios that lack credibility could result
in a glut of "sub-prime"" carbon credits that could undermine
the system and cause a collapse akin to the current global financial crisis.
She highlighted that initiatives such as the US Lacey Act, which bans the
import of illegally sourced forest products, merit further consideration.




Short-Lived Arctic Climate Forcers:
Avoiding Arctic Tipping Points

Presented by the Climate
Policy Center
and Government of Norway


This event
focused on means and actions to cut high-impact climate pollutants, which could
avoid the overshooting of tipping points in natural and physical systems, and
cited irremediable Arctic ice loss and rising sea levels as examples.

Hanne Inger Bjurstrøm, Norwegian Ministry of Environment, noted that the Arctic
ice is melting at twice the rate of ice on other land masses. She argued that
seabed and permafrost releases of CO2 may aggravate the situation and explained
that Arctic nations have come together to act on climate change. She emphasized
that Norway
is working on this issue through the Arctic Council, which is examining how to
reduce pollutants that have a negative impact on the Arctic region. She
stressed that Arctic preservation would require rapid action, noting that the
technology to address short-lived gases already exists.

Pam Pearson, Climate Policy Center-Europe, explained the importance of slowing
Arctic warming and sea ice melt by reducing high-impact climate pollutants. She
highlighted potential tipping points in the climate system, such as increased
methane release from permafrost and the seabed, and sea level rise from loss of
the Greenland ice sheet. She stressed that
reducing black carbon, methane, and ozone could slow the rate of Arctic warming
quickly and delay springtime melt. She also described: the Arctic Council
response to the problem; the establishment of the Arctic Monitoring and
Assessment Program in September 2008; and the development of recommendations to
be considered at the Ministerial meeting that will take place in Tromsø, Norway,
in April 2009.

Pearson, Climate Policy Center-Europe. William Irving, US Environmental
Protection Agency, presented on methane mitigation technologies, as well as
potential options and policies, and explained that reducing methane emissions
does not involve advanced technologies; instead, it can be achieved through the
use of state of the art technologies and behavioral changes. He argued that
stabilization of methane emissions could be achieved by 2025, a date calculated
based on the emission reduction potential associated with four major methane
sources: landfills, coal mines, natural gas and oil systems, and manure
management systems. He also emphasized that maintaining stabilization of
methane emissions through 2050 would necessitate emission reductions across a
wider array of sources, particularly rice production.

Participants discussed: the importance of addressing agricultural spring-time
burning to reduce black carbon pollutants in the Arctic nations; the potential
contribution of diesel sources; the relationship between the reduction of
anthropogenic emissions of methane and ozone layer depletion; and the impact of
emissions from permafrost on Arctic nations.



How REDD Policy Options Interact
with Forest Measuring and Monitoring

Presented by the Woods Hole Research Center


This event
discussed how policy options for reduced emissions from deforestation and
forest degradation (REDD) relate to forest measuring and monitoring needs.

Andrea Cattaneo, Woods
Hole Research
, presented on the
implications of REDD policy design on monitoring. He outlined several policy
proposals, and said measures to distribute funds among countries would require
monitoring of stocks and flows at the national level. He noted that market
options, as opposed to fund options, for REDD require more measurement. He
highlighted the impact of the availability of spatial detail on the ability to
perform natural resource management.

Denilson Cardoso, Society for Wildlife Research and Environmental Education
(SPVS), described three climate-related projects in Brazil‘s Atlantic rainforest. He
discussed the implications of using two different methodologies for developing
baselines for the area. He said that while image analysis was cost effective
and efficient for evaluating deforestation, there are challenges in relying on
the tool for measuring degradation. He stated that while the best option for
evaluating degradation would be diagnosis in the field, this method remains
difficult and expensive.

Bronson Griscom, The Nature Conservancy, presented on the inclusion of
degradation in REDD measures. He argued that degradation is important because
associated emissions could approach those of deforestation, and because
degradation can be a catalyst for deforestation processes. He described two
methodologies available for measuring and monitoring degradation: mapping
spatial distribution of logging and fire, and measuring emissions per unit area
from logging.

Alessandro Baccini, Woods Hole Research
Center, described a project dedicated
to measuring above ground forest biomass in tropical Africa.
He described the project’s approach, combining remote sensing with forest
inventory methodologies, which he said is not only successful in providing
spatially explicit estimates of above ground forest biomass but is also cost
effective. He noted the limited availability of field observations, and the
benefits of using the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) in augmenting

Josef Kellndorfer, Woods
Hole Research
, presented on new
tools for pan-tropical forest measuring and monitoring. He described the
Japanese Space Agency’s ALOS/PALSAR (Advanced Land Observing Satellite/Phased
Array L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar) observation strategy, and discussed the
use of this tool in the Xingu watershed, Brazil. He concluded by
highlighting the promise of combining measurement technologies.

Participants discussed: life cycle emissions of forest products; priority needs
for data; alternatives for fuel use; the timeline for resolving methodological
uncertainties; and the cause of error in measuring and monitoring methodologies.



From Vulnerability to Resilience:
the Integration of Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation

Presented by Practical Action


This event
discussed disaster risk reduction (DRR) measures aimed at bolstering the
resilience of communities to climate change.

Nigel Timmins, Tear Fund, discussed the definition of DRR, namely when hazards
and vulnerability interact or when capacities are overwhelmed. He stated that
DRR requires partnerships among communities and involvement of accountable
local governments. He argued that risk assessments should be integrated into
development planning; community members need to be informed and supported; and
certain structural and technical measures, such as early warning systems and
emergency plans, should be adopted. He highlighted the Hyogo Framework for
Action, a multi-stakeholder platform for cross-ministerial coordination on DRR.

Rachel Berger, Practical Action, described a conceptual framework for DRR. She
noted that the timescale of forecasts needed for DRR is five to ten years,
whereas climate models typically focus on a 20 to 30 year period and weather
forecasts focus on a time period of a few days to several months. She defined
three types of climate-related hazards: recurrent hazards such as storms,
droughts and frosts; long-term trends in rainfall and temperature; and shifts
in climate regimes resulting from overshooting tipping points. She urged
adoption of "no regrets" options and strengthening of adaptive
capacity to enhance the ability of communities to contend with uncertainty.

Gehendra Bahadur Gurung, Practical Action, discussed integrating DRR and
community-based adaptation by: identifying community perceptions and responses
to climate change; including communities in observing climate change and its
impacts; and evaluating climate change scenarios for their ability to inform
communities. He highlighted several roles the government could play, such as
incorporating climate predictions into planning, strengthening early warnings,
and ensuring the provision of downscaled climate information. He also discussed
DRR experiences in Nepal and

Jessica Faleiro, Tear Fund, gave an example of integrating climate change
adaptation into DRR in Bangladesh,
and noted the role of climate information in DRR. She showed a video that
underscored the linkages between disaster risks and livelihoods and documented
DRR projects in Burkina Faso
and El Salvador.
She highlighted a Tear Fund report, entitled, "Linking Climate Change
Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction."

Participants discussed: DRR experiences in their own communities; long-term
considerations of DRR; differences in adaptive capacity among community
members; maladaptation, or experiences in which adaptation measures are
perverse or not helpful in the long-term; seasonal migration due to the loss of
agriculture; the need to incorporate indigenous knowledge; the role of the
private sector; and means to attract funding for DRR.



Principles and Procedures for
Technology Transfer Mechanisms under the UNFCCC

Presented by the Center for International
Environmental Law (CIEL)


This event
discussed technology transfer (TT) under the UNFCCC, existing constraints on TT
and ways forward.

Dalindyebo Shabalala, CIEL, described the institutional framework for TT. He
explained that in the context of multilateral environmental agreements, TT
should not be understood as the transfer of knowledge from the research phase
to the commercialization phase; instead, the United Nations Conference on Trade
and Development Draft Code of Conduct on TT as well as Chapter 34 of Agenda 21
on the transfer of environmentally sound technologies can be useful to define
TT commitments under the UNFCCC. He also noted that the concept of TT is often
associated with the sale of goods and cross-border investment movements. He
said that high information costs, insufficient resources to purchase
technologies, and right holders’ refusals to sell or license the technology, as
well as poor technology needs assessments by recipient countries, may constrain
international TT.

Chee Yoke Ling, Third World Network, argued that while the conceptual framework
of UNFCCC is very well thought out in terms of principles, architecture,
objectives and sharing of responsibilities, implementation of TT has not lived
up to expectations. She emphasized the need to restructure the economy for
advancing TT, because the environmental crisis and the economic crisis are
"two sides of the same coin." She said that monopolistic restrictions
run against the natural flow of technology, which should be adapted to local
needs and assessed to evaluate social, environmental, and economic impacts. She
concluded that while climate-friendly measures already exist in many developing
countries, the finance to scale up such measures is extremely limited.

Steve Sawyer, Global Wind Energy Council, noted that the private sector is
large and diverse and argued that a governmental body responsible for
regulating TT is a mistake. He also stressed the need to define the
responsibilities of public and private sectors clearly, with the latter having
a major role to play in the rapid diffusion of existing climate-friendly
technologies and cooperative research and development.

A participant noted that countries have been calling for the establishment of a
subsidiary body on technology transfer. Another argued that market demand,
which is absent in developing countries as they lack UNFCCC commitments, is a
significant issue for mitigation technology transfer.



Key Issues for Poznan

Presented by the Third


This event
provided a forum for developing country representatives to highlight issues
that they consider to be important for this Conference of the Parties,
including an examination of the "shared vision"" concept,
finance and technology transfer. They also discussed what would be required in
order to achieve a "fair deal" for developing countries at the Copenhagen meeting next

Bernarditas Muller, the Philippines,
lamented that 16 years after the establishment of the UN Framework Convention
on Climate Change (UNFCCC), discussions are still focused on its
implementation. She called on developed countries to recognize their
responsibility in addressing climate change and fulfill their commitments.

Surya Sethi, India, said that the UNFCCC already
contains a "long-term vision," and that the emphasis should be on
delivering on established commitments. He said that any future approach must be
based on equity and historical culpability for the problem of climate change.
He noted that the per capita carbon consumption gap is widening between North
and South countries, and that improving living standards in developing
countries will require an increase in their emissions.

Amjad Abdulla, the Maldives,
said that if the UNFCCC had been fully implemented and commitments contained
within had been honored, the Bali Action Plan would not have been needed. He
said that countries such as his could be made less vulnerable through provision
of adequate adaptation resources, citing the example of the Netherlands.

Kamel Djemouai, Algeria,
said that in order for a "fair deal" to be achieved in Copenhagen, the process must be transparent and fair,
noting that non-Annex I countries are hesitant to commit due to uncertainties
regarding the objective of the Copenhagen

Martin Khor, Third World Network, said that the climate crisis requires the
magnitude of funding recently allocated to bailing out the financial sector. He
expressed hope that the US
could play a more positive role in the climate negotiations under the Obama
administration, and that developed countries will agree to a G-77/China
proposal for a development fund administered by the UNFCCC. He said that there
is a misconception that the Kyoto Protocol will expire, noting that this is
only the end of the first commitment period.

Kate Horner, Friends of the Earth, said that fulfilling mitigation commitments
must remain the top priority, and noted that California had managed to established a
strong emissions cap. She said that political will combined with progressive
economic policies can catalyze climate change action, and suggested that
funding could come from the US$16 billion in subsidies currently allocated to
the oil industry.