10 things you need to know about REDD+ safeguards

Seven REDD+ safeguards were introduced in the 16th Conference of Parties (COP16) in Cancun, Mexico in 2011.
From tenure to gender, what do you need to know about REDD+ safeguards?

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At a glance :

  • REDD+ safeguards cover a range of areas to ensure projects do no harm.
  • Expectations are high for an international consensus on social safeguards at the UN climate change conference in Lima.
  • Following is a 10-point tip sheet. Follow the links for the full research.

1. They’re all about doing no harm

REDD+ safeguards are measures, policies or actions that mitigate risks or harm that result from the implementation of REDD+, a voluntary mechanism that incentivizes developing countries for the sustainable management of forests and enhancement of carbon stocks.

2. There are seven of them

Seven REDD+ safeguards were introduced in the 16th Conference of Parties (COP16) in Cancun, Mexico in 2011. These seven cover the following: governance, rights, participation, consent, environment and social-co-benefits, permanence and leakage.

3. They’re not always easy

Some Cancun safeguards can be operationalized more easily than others, depending on existing challenges in countries that are related to forest governance, tenure, rights and other safeguard-related issues.

4. REDD+ countries have to report on them

Developing countries engaged in REDD+ activities are mandated to report how they address and implement REDD+ safeguards through the Safeguards Information System (SIS).

5. They come with tough standards

SIS can be measured against standards that are as stringent as those for MRV (measurement, reporting and verification) systems for forest carbon emissions.

6. They aim to protect more than people

REDD+ safeguards could enhance biodiversity protection, but a landscape approach should be applied to make this happen

7. Gender equity matters too

Participation must be complemented with gender-responsive interventions to ensure and strengthen the role of women in implementing REDD+.

8. Tenure is key

A secure tenure foundation is important to ensure that REDD+ activities do not harm the rights and livelihoods of stakeholders.

9. It’s good to get local

Strong subnational initiatives help in the operationalization of REDD+ safeguards

10. They matter for benefit-sharing mechanisms

Risk assessment in identifying priority areas, review of existing data and refined assessment and reporting of safeguards should be conducted to operationalize REDD+ safeguards in relation to developing national benefit-sharing mechanisms.

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Topic(s) :   REDD+ Community forestry Landscapes Rights Gender