‘Actually existing’ REDD: Social tensions, ongoing deforestation, local confusion, financial benefits not delivered

“Early evidence from REDD+ projects suggests major challenges, including: ongoing weak enforcement of domestic laws on forests and land, leading to limited effectiveness; contestation or conflict over property rights and community benefits; as well as securitisation and violence, often perpetrated by government agencies.”

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Guest Post: Norwegian climate policy affects the poorest

Hanne Svarstad and Tor A. Benjaminsen have been carrying out research into REDD in Tanzania for several years. Svarstad is a political ecologist, sociologist and professor in Development Studies at Oslo Metropolitan University. Benjaminsen is a human geographer and professor of Development Studies at the Department of International Environment and Development Studies (Noragric), Norwegian University of Life Sciences.

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Kenya’s REDD programme risks exacerbating violence against indigenous Sengwer communities in Embobut forest

Since January 2014, Kenya Forest Service guards have carried out a series of violent evictions of the Sengwer indigenous people from their homes in Embobut forest. While the evictions took place the Kenya Forest Service was funded by international donors, including the World Bank, the European Union, and the Finnish government.

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How the Kasigau Corridor REDD project undermines local democracy in Kenya

Susan Chomba of the World Agroforestry Centre in Kenya was the lead author of a 2016 critique of the Kasigau Corridor REDD+ Project. The authors found that the project increased inequity in the project area. In a response, Mwangi Githiru, an employee of Wildlife Works, the US company running the project, argued that the REDD project was actually “correcting inequity”.

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Jane Goodall Institute’s REDD project in Tanzania: A totalitarian approach to conservation that led to increased inequity, undermining of democracy, and violent evictions

In March 2009, Norway launched its REDD programme in Tanzania. This was a “nested approach”, that was to include developing a national REDD strategy, national forest monitoring, and local pilot projects. About one-third of Norway’s US$90 million went to eight NGOs. One of these NGOs was the Jane Goodall Institute.

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Legal expert on communities in the Oddar Meanchey REDD project in Cambodia: “REDD+ is done to them”

David Takacs is an Associate Professor at the University of California Hastings College of the Law. In December 2012, he carried out a pro bono legal consulting trip to Vietnam and Cambodia for “an international NGO that was planning REDD+ projects in Southeast Asia.” One of the REDD projects that Takacs looked at was the Oddar Meanchey REDD project in Cambodia.

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Guest Post: Oddar Meanchey communities “have long been abandoned”. The Fern report correctly raises a number of difficulties and challenges with carbon offsetting generally and REDD+ in particular

Dr Tim Frewer carried out part of the research for his PhD thesis in Cambodia, looking at the Oddar Meanchey REDD project. Following the responses from Terra Global Capital and VCS to Fern’s recent critical report that featured a case study of the Oddar Meanchey project, Frewer sent the following Guest Post to REDD-Monitor.

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