REDD+ can bring risks and opportunities for rural populations, especially indigenous peoples. As a result, the Cancun Safeguards were adopted in 2010, including respecting the knowledge and rights of indigenous peoples, protecting natural forests and their ecosystem services, and enhancing other social and environmental benefits. As REDD+ actions can potentially provide multiple benefits in addition to climate change mitigation, there are potential synergies with the Aichi Biodiversity Targets (also adopted in 2010), which a number of initiatives have recently been exploring.
The event shared national and international experiences in integrating biodiversity into REDD+ planning and vice versa. REDD+ recipient countries from the Congo Basin, ASEAN and the Amazon Forest Basin presented their cases, alongside findings from a CBD/UNEP-WCMC capacity building workshop on REDD+/CBD synergies, the REDD-PAC project on designing REDD+ policies that help to meet CBD goals, and recent FCMC/CI workshops on forest and biodiversity monitoring.
The discussion focused on REDD+ negotiations under UNFCCC, in particular the conservation of forest carbon stocks through avoiding deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries. It demonstrated the application of safeguards for biodiversity and the rights of indigenous and local communities. The aim was to promote enhanced policy coherence as an essential tool for the implementation of sustainable development goals at the national level. The theme was also closely linked to Goal 15 of the Outcome Document of the Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals (“Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss”) particularly on the integration of ecosystems and biodiversity values into national planning and resource mobilization to conserve and sustainably use biodiversity and ecosystems. (Target 15.9; 15a and 15b).
Key questions addressed:
- What are the ways in which the potential synergies between REDD+ and the Aichi targets are being achieved?
- What are the challenges to achieving these synergies?
- How can other countries that are not yet taking advantage of the synergies get started?