Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Fourteen developing Nations recieve first World Bank funds for forest protection!

The World Bank's Forest Carbon Partnership Facility just announced the fourteen developing countries that will recieve funds to develop their capacity to estimate national carbon stocks and emissions so that they will be ready to participate in a REDD mechanism (Reducing Emissions through Deforestation and Degradation), which a planned component of the new global climate change agreement expected in Kopenhagen in 2009. REDD will see developing countries receiving money in exchange for lowered emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.

The Forest Carbon Partnership Facility also plans to award funds to a smaller group of countries to participate in REDD pilot projects.

The fourteen countries recieving funds are the Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Bolivia, Costa Rica, Guyana, Mexico, Panama, Nepal, Lao PDR, Vietnam.

All nine industrialized countries formally participating in the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility took part in the funding decision: Australia, Finland, France (the French Development Agency), Japan, Norway, Spain, Switzerland, Britain and the United States.

News article


victor said...

So what do you think? Is this a good or a bad thing?
Clearly, getting things moving in terms of forest protection is a good thing but does that change if thsi funding is done by the Worldbank?

Do you think that having the Worldbank heavily(?) involved in the initial stages of REDD might influence the discussion in a direction the Bank would favour?

It seems from my rather lay perspective that while it is clear that REDD will play a major role in the Copenhagen agreement (if there is one) but there is still quite a bit of discussion about how REDD funds will be tranferred to whom and on the basis of what.

So I guess what I am interested in is your opinion whether the Worldbank initiative could contribute to influencing the discourse to, say, favour market based over fund based mechanisms etc.

Also, what to you think about the level of funding? $82m doesn't sound like a serious amount. A sizable chunk probably disappears in Woldbank overhead costs and if the rest is divided by 14 countries... it doesn't sound that much is going to actually end up in these countries.

Chris Henschel said...

Hi Victor,

You ask some very good questions. I was a bit unclear about the $82 million (which sounds like little); it says in the article that this is the amount contributed by countries so far but that more donations are expected...so it's not clear that this $82 is the amount awarded or whether that may grow.

On your bigger question... I can't add anything to your reasonable speculation that the involvement of the World Bank may influence the direction of the REDD discussion, possibly in a direction we would otherwise not want to take.

victor said...

You're right - the $82m are only initial contributions of these governments. The Worldbank website tells us that the targeted volume of this programme is $300m.