Re-envisioning REDD+: Gender, Forest Governance and REDD+ in Asia

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Author/s (editor/s):

Jeanette Gurung, Abidah Setyowati

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Publication type:

Policy paper

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Rights and Resources

Jeanette Gurung and Abidah Billah Setyowati, ‘Re-envisioning REDD+: Gender, Forest Governance and REDD+ in Asia’, Policy Brief #4, Washington, DC: Rights and Resources Institute, 2012, pp. 1‒15.

In the last several years, Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) has gained momentum as an effective means to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. REDD is an initiative to create a financial value for the carbon stored in forests, offering incentives for developing countries to reduce emissions from forested lands and invest in low-carbon paths to sustainable development. “REDD+” goes beyond deforestation and forest degradation, and includes the role of conservation, sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks.

REDD+ presents significant challenges and opportunities for countries in Asia. If properly designed and implemented, REDD+ will be able to contribute to significant reductions in the region’s carbon emissions and deliver important co-benefits, such as biodiversity conservation, poverty reduction, opportunities for sustainable livelihoods in poor and marginalized communities, improved governance and tenure rights, as well as climate change adaptation benefits. However, there have also been growing concerns regarding the possible socio-economic impacts of REDD+ projects on forest-dependent communities. Limited participation by Indigenous Peoples, women and other marginalised groups, and the increased risk of losing access to forests due to limited acknowledgment of their rights over forest resources have both been cited as potential problems. In this light, women are among those most likely to be negatively affected by climate change.

In this study, we explore how patriarchal institutional culture contributes to the shape of REDD+ program and activities. This chapter is based on the authors’ recent study for USAID on gender and REDD+ in the Asia region. The study aims to identify and assess existing practices of REDD+ and Payment for Environmental Services (PES) projects that contribute to women’s empowerment and gender integration, and provide recommendations on how REDD+ initiatives in Asia can successfully incorporate gender perspectives. The study also analyses how different roles and status of women and men within the community, political sphere, workplace and households affect the achievement of sustainable results for REDD+ projects, and how the anticipated results of the project affect men and women differently.

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