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  1. 1. BY ROGER MUCHUBA Groupe Travail Climat REDD, DR CONGO Civil Society CHATHAM HOUSE, Third Dialogue on Forests, Governance and Climate Change, 22nd January 2010 Email:
  2. 2. Forests in the Congo Basin and DR Congo Congo Basin forests - the second largest continuous rainforest in the world DRC contains more than 60% of Congo Basin’s forests – forests occupy 60% of the land in the DRC – approximately 1,200,000 km2 Historical deforestation rate of approx. 0.25%/year in DRC Forest is a reservoir of carbon Estimated that 17 billion tonnes of carbon are sequestered in the DRC, out of a total of 32 billion tonnes in the Congo Basin.
  3. 3. Forest-dependent peoples in the Congo Basin More than 30 million peoples living in Congo Basin’s rainforest Includes: Indigenous ‘pygmie’ groups (Baka, Twa etc.); Bantu agriculturalists Dependent on the forest for food, livelihoods, medicines, traditional practices Protectors of the forest for thousands of years – minimal ecological impact Communities use the forest in sustainable manner eg. non- timber forest products, eg. honey, chennille (caterpillars). Outside influence in forest brings conflict
  4. 4. Drivers of deforestation and threats to the forest and forest-peoples in DRC Forest policy focused on industrial exploitation and ‘strict’ conservation Industrial logging dominated by foreign companies Artisanal logging expanding rapidly History of creation of park sand reserves without consultation of traditional customary owners of the land Threats to the forest and forest-peoples Profit from logging has not reached communities – poor benefit- sharing Concessions to logging and national parks deprive communities of land and resources - eviction of local communities from their lands Loss of biodiversity Shifting cultivation and gathering fuelwood/charcoal – reflects problem in DRC state provision of basic services
  5. 5. State policy in Congo Basin • States retain legal rights to all land and national territories in Congo Basin • Customary rights of communities to land and resources not recognized – therefore insecure land tenure • Congo Basin governments adopted new Forest Codes and other legislation - 1980s-2000s • Focused on industrial exploitation of forest and conservation • Legislation related to forest communities not developed or implemented • No legislation for ‘indigenous territories’ such as those in Brazil • Only Congo Brazzaville to pass Indigenous Peoples law in 2010
  6. 6. DR Congo Forest Policy • Forest Code (Code Forestier) adopted in 2002 • Supporting legislation on community rights and benefit-sharing still not adopted • Transitional Government granted 25.5millions of hectares of logging concessions illegally, 2002-04 • Moratorium on new logging forest concessions - 2002 • After legal review, illegal concessions cancelled in 2008 • Challenge to manage cancelation with transparency • Legal review (2005) showed crucial role of indigenous peoples and importance to maintain the moratorium • Zoning process – slow implementation
  7. 7. Community-based forestry in Congo Basin • Difference between ‘community-based forestry’ and ‘community forestry’ • Cameroon implemented community forestry • However, onerous administrative process, small concession size and not related to traditional forest management • Provision in the DRC Forest Code for community-based forestry – but no implementation • Currently – debate on community forest law • Proposal to restrict size of community forest to 10,000 hectares, but traditional areas are often 100,000 hectares • Need to transfer land rights not just management rights over forest • Law is crucial for success of REDD process
  8. 8. National REDD process in DR Congo • DR Congo – joint UN-REDD and Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF), World Bank • January 2009 – first joint scoping mission - UN-REDD/FCPF • May 2009 – second mission • Presentation of the programme of UN-REDD and FCPF • REDD National Coordination began operating – government body • October 2009 - third mission • November 2009 - Decree on REDD statute gives legal recognition to National Committee - civil society/Indigenous Peoples/government/private sector body • December 2009 – McKinsey report on REDD in DRC • January 2010 consultation on Readiness Proposal Plan (RPP) to FCPF • Overall, good cooperation between civil society and National Coordination • Held workshops in provinces to involve civil society organisations (CSOs) and communities
  9. 9. Challenges for REDD in Congo Basin Identifying the real drivers of deforestation and degradation not point communities as causes of forest deforestation How to ensure that benefit sharing is real? Sustainable Forest Management could lead to subsidies for industrial logging through REDD Indigenous and forest peoples must benefit from REDD Legal reforms needed to recognise community-based forestry Need to ensure fair and participatory zoning plan How to apply social and environmental safeguards in relation to REDD? Focus should be on natural forest not plantation Take into consideration UNDRIP specially FPIC (free, prior, informed consent) Governance and transparency in all processes MRV (monitoring, reporting and verification) more than carbon How to build an effective and accessible complaint mechanism? Need to stop projected law censoring civil society
  10. 10. Role of civil society and NGOs in DR Congo Forest reform Outreach / awareness-raising of the Forest Code and other instruments Promotion of community rights Activities on the ground Civil society pilot projects on participatory MRV, creating awareness-raising material in 2010 Developing alternatives to industrial logging (such as payment for ecosystem services, non-timber forest products , community-based forestry etc.) Develop participatory mapping, using GPS technology, to help secure land tenure Monitor activities of international organizations World Bank Using the complaint mechanism of Forest Code Support independent monitoring of forest governance
  11. 11. Regional and international actors in the Congo Basin Regional and international programmes can improve forest governance COMIFAC action plan (plan de convergence) - 2005 Congo Basin Forest Fund (CBFF) - £100 million – UK/Norway 2008 CBFF managed by African Development Bank (ADB) Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP) now co-ordinated by Germany – 9 landscapes FLEGT – ongoing process between EU and Congo Brazzaville Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification – mixed results • All Congo Basin states are party to UNDRIP, CDB, ICCPR, ACRHP • BUT no effective application of these instruments
  12. 12. Recommendations for REDD in Congo Basin COMIFAC must be engaged on good governance under UNFCCC mechanism to secure funders Develop a specific law on Indigenous Peoples rights, especially to land, territories and resources – good example from Congo Brazzaville Ensure civil society has a strong, independent voice in all stages of the REDD process as one guarantee of good governance and transparency Similarly, Parliament and local government must be involved in REDD process Develop good partnership between Governments and World Bank, FAO, UNDP, UNEP and civil society World Bank must respect their own safeguard policy (OP4.10) States must respect their international engagements (UNDRIP, ICCPR) Need to build a global anti-poverty policy like DSRP document in DRC Need to address consumption in developed countries (OCDE link with consumer countries)