Research highlights &z.rtrif; Numerous academics and activists have expressed concern about the rights of communities living in forests in light of the climate change mitigation scheme known as reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD+). REDD+ could leave out forest communities, or have positive or negative effects. The two specific arenas studied are tenure rights and rules for forest use. &z.rtrif; The findings of a study on forest tenure reforms in 10 countries are examined to exact lessons learned in light of these concerns. It demonstrates that even when rural communities win new rights to forest resources, they face numerous obstacles in implementation and in the enjoyment of rights in practice. &z.rtrif; Where there is support for securing community rights, REDD+ will be implemented in governance contexts similar to the ones in which these reforms have taken place. Where there is not, the context may be even more unfavourable to communities. Better outcomes are only likely if REDD+ efforts are accompanied by a substantial effort to challenge the status quo. Binding agreements to protect local rights may be needed. &z.rtrif; Not only would the failure to defend community rights and the imposition of externally designed rules have a detrimental impact on communities, but this could also put the REDD+ project at risk.
Global Environmental Change – Elsevier
Published: May 1, 2011
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