The International Institute for Environment and Development has published a new report on benefit distribution under Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) programs. The report includes a top ten list of recommendations to ensure REDD+ works for poor communities that live in and around forests.
The list, as laid out in a blog post on IIED’s web site:
- Communities should be consulted on whether they prefer to have benefits transferred to the entire community or directly to households.
- Consider economic feasibility, local institutional capacity and governance structures before deciding whether to transfer benefits to communities as a whole or directly to households.
- Three factors need to be considered to make REDD+ benefit the poor: proportionality, equality and need.
- In such unequal societies equitable benefit distribution could be achieved by systematically favoring the poor, such as landless and small landholders.
- Projects should be designed to use the primary asset of the poor – their labour.
- Whether to transfer cash or in-kind benefits should be based on a careful assessment of community preferences and the logistical and social consequences of each payment type.
- An analysis of the availability and access to local markets should decide whether to provide cash or in-kind payments.
- Consider whether the type of payment will have a negative impact on the local economy.
- Where cash payments are made, some measures need to be taken to overcome inflationary pressures.
- Project design needs to be flexible and include the periodic assessment by participants of their payment preferences.