Forests and Climate Change

Forests and Climate Change

The Social Dimensions of REDD in Latin America

Anthony Hall

Controlling deforestation, which is responsible for about one-fifth of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, has become a major tool in the battle against global warming. An important new international initiative – Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) – provides economic incentives to forest users to encourage preservation of trees. Nearly all Latin American countries are introducing national REDD strategies and pilot schemes.

Chapter 5: REDD+ Regimes in Latin America: Latecomers

Anthony Hall

Subjects: environment, climate change, environmental geography, environmental sociology, social policy and sociology, comparative social policy


BETTER LATE THAN NEVER Aside from the three leading REDD+ nations and discounting Venezuela, Uruguay, Belize and French Guiana, none of which play any formal role in REDD+ at the time of writing, all other countries in Central and South America have taken steps to set up their own national strategies. This has been undertaken with financial and technical assistance from one or more external institutions; principally, the FCPF of the World Bank, the UN-REDD programme, as well as bilateral donors such as Norway and Germany. Within this second category of emerging REDD+ regimes in Latin America, the pace has varied considerably, with some countries demonstrating much greater commitment than others. The more advanced within this group include Ecuador, Guyana, Paraguay, Bolivia, Peru, Panama and Colombia. Others are still at a relatively early stage in developing their proposals and, at the time of writing, had not yet formulated comprehensive REDD+ plans; namely, Argentina, Guatemala, and Suriname. Remaining countries have hardly got beyond expressions of interest: Chile, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua. ON THE REDD ROAD: ECUADOR, BOLIVIA, PANAMA, PERU, PARAGUAY, COLOMBIA, GUYANA Ecuador Ecuador faces similar challenges to other Latin American countries such as Costa Rica and Mexico in terms of containing deforestation, but its experience with forest management and PES is far more recent. It is estimated that around 55 per cent of the country is forested, or about 12 million hectares. Obtaining accurate deforestation data for Ecuador is problematic due to the lack of a full forest inventory...

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