Research Handbook on REDD-Plus and International Law
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Research Handbook on REDD-Plus and International Law

Edited by Christina Voigt

The REDD+ initiative for Reducing Emissions of greenhouse gases from Deforestation and Forest Degradation is an important tool, established under the UNFCCC, for incentivizing developing countries to adopt and scale up climate mitigation actions in the forest sector and for capturing and channeling the financial resources to do so. With contributions from legal experts, international relations scholars, climate change negotiators and activists, this Handbook eloquently examines the emerging governance arrangements for REDD+, analysing how and to what extent it is embedded in the international legal framework.
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Chapter 15: Adjudicating disputes across scales: global administrative law considerations for REDD+

Kristen Hite


Climate change requires global collaboration across any number of political, cultural and geographic boundaries. REDD+ is no exception: by integrating REDD+ into international efforts to address climate change, the global community now can incentivize efforts to capture more of the carbon stored in trees on faraway lands. National and local property laws, customary rights, international standards and obligations, and REDD-specific policies all influence who benefits from and has rights to forest carbon. In a perfectly governed world, these norms are all consistent and clear. But this is rarely the case, as each set of norms has its own system of rule-making and adjudicating disputes. Conflicts arise regarding who has rights to carbon and the forest on which it is dependent, exacerbated by implementation across scales and political boundaries. This chapter offers a global administrative law perspective to explore avenues to address various disputes that can arise out of competing claims to forests and the carbon they contain. The two core functions of administrative law are rule-making and adjudication. Rule-making is the process of standard setting and application of norms at the institutional level. Adjudication is the process of applying and enforcing these institutional norms.

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