An action within a defined geographical area that is specifically designed or implemented to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In the case of REDD+, the purpose of this activity would be to reduce emissions from deforestation and/or degradation, or to ensure the conservation and sustainable management of forests and the enhancement of forest carbon stocks.
Adaptation efforts seek to reduce the impacts of climate change on biological systems by increasing resilience and reducing vulnerability of biological systems to the adverse effects of climate change. The effects of global warming and climate change are expected to last for many years, even if emissions are stabilized.
The direct human-induced conversion of land that has not been forested for a period of at least 50 years, to forested land through planting, seeding and/or the human-induced promotion of natural seed sources.
The practice that combines agricultural activities such as crop cultivation and husbandry with production from trees (for example timber or fruits and nuts) on the same plot. This is obtained either by planting trees on agricultural land or by cropping/keeping livestock on forested land.
The action of ensuring eligible stakeholders involved in REDD+ project implementation receive an equitable portion of the non-financial and/or financial benefits derived from REDD+ project activities.
The total mass of all living, or recently living, organisms in a given area. As a renewable energy source, biomass can be used either directly through combustion or be converted into biofuels.
The measuring of the additional greenhouse gases that are emitted into the atmosphere as a direct and indirect consequence of an activity, product or organisation.
A legal instrument created through regulations or standards that reflects the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in units of tons of C)2e, and may be presented by its owner as evidence of emissions reductions for administrative or other purposes. Carbon credits can be traded within regulated or voluntary carbon markets. The ability to generate, own and sell carbon credits from REDD+ programs is one of the sources of benefits for REDD+.
Transactions for the trade of allowances, credits such as certified emissions reductions or carbon offsets together comprise the carbon market. Markets can be classified as either ‘regulatory’ or ‘voluntary’ markets.
The removal of carbon from the atmosphere into carbon sinks through physical or biological processes, such as photosynthesis.
The quantity of carbon stored in a carbon pool at a specified time.
Statistically significant changes in global or regional climate patterns persisting for an extended period of time and attributed directly or indirectly to the increased levels of anthropogenic greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere, in addition to natural climatic variability.
The non-carbon benefits arising from REDD+ policies and projects such as alleviating poverty, enhancing biodiversity, improving forest governance and protecting other environmental services.
Community Forest Management
A partnership between forest-dependent communities, NGO’s and/or local authorities with the primary objective of achieving sustainable resource management and enhancing livelihood opportunities through shared management and governance of forest resources.
A concession is a grant of usage rights, land or property by a government, local authority, corporation, individual or other legal entity. REDD+ may fail to meet its objectives if the potential revenue from REDD+ projects is lower than that obtainable from other land-uses such as logging or agriculture.
Convention on Biological Diversity
A globally legally binding Convention that requires all signatory parties to develop national strategies and implement plans and programs for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystems and the equitable sharing of benefits derived from genetic resources.
Traditional entitlements, that are not always supported or recognised by national or international laws, which encompass forest resource use. They have evolved and become established through community consensus on local usage patterns and gain authority and are enforced by locally acceptable institutions.
Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
A UN General Assembly Declaration for the treatment of indigenous peoples which identifies key substantive and procedural collective rights to protect indigenous peoples from discrimination and marginalisation. REDD+ programmes have an obligation to ensure that this Declaration is upheld throughout REDD+ implementation.
The conversion of forest to another land use or the long-term reduction of tree canopy cover below the minimum threshold defined for a ‘forest’ area.
Drivers of Deforestation
The direct and indirect causes of forest conversion. These vary in scale from local pressures to global macro-economic incentives, and are often the product of complex interactions between social, environmental and political factors.
The interactive system formed from all living organisms and their physical and chemical environment within a given area. Ecosystems cover a hierarchy of spatial scales and can comprise the entire globe, biomes at the continental scale or small, well-defined systems such as a small pond.
A forest is an area with a high density of trees. There are several definitions of forest currently in use: the FAO defines forest as having a minimum canopy cover of 10%, minimum tree height in situ of 5 meters, a minimum area of 0.5 hectares, and where agriculture is not the dominant land use. The UNFCCC defines forests as having a minimum canopy cover of 10-30%, minimum tree height of 2-5m and minimum area of 0.1ha.
Forest Carbon Partnership Facility
A World Bank programme consisting of a Readiness fund and a Carbon fund created to give financial support to developing countries that want to reduce carbon emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.
The state and non-state institutions and actors and relationships that shape the political decision-making surrounding the allocation, conservation, coordination, control and use of forest resources both socially and economically.
Regular on the ground technical surveys essential for contributing to the monitoring and reporting of forest carbon stocks for REDD+ projects. The surveys involve establishing permanent sample plots and collecting data on the following: above-ground biomass, diameter at breast height and height of trees.
The practice of managing and researching forests, both natural and planted.
Free, Prior and Informed Consent
A key concept in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. It refers to the obligation of outside entities to ensure that communities can grant or decline consent to a project or activity without coercion or intimidation, in advance of project planning or implementation and with access to all relevant information.
A promise by a third party (the guarantor), often a publicly funded organisation, to repay the investor if the organisation fails to repay the financial capital (they default). Forest carbon projects can use guarantees to reduce the perceived risks for investors, making the investment more attractive and easier for the project to attract financial capital.
The set of laws and policies that determine locally how the land and its resources are accessed, who can hold and use its resources, and for how long and under what conditions they may be used.
The capabilities, assets (including both material and social resources) and activities required for a means of living. A livelihood is sustainable when it can cope with and recover from stress and shocks and maintain or enhance its capabilities and assets both now and in the future, while not undermining its natural resource base.
A human intervention to reduce the sources or enhance the sinks of greenhouse gases and ultimately limit the magnitude of climate change.
A contract that represents the right (but not the obligation) to purchase or sell a carbon asset at a pre-determined price on or before a specified date.
The division of the economy which is run outside of the state by individuals and companies for profit. Innovative options for forest finance, such as forest bonds, could leverage private sector finance to scale up existing public sector finance for REDD+ activities.
Readiness Preparation Proposal
A framework document which sets out a clear plan, budget and schedule for a country to achieve REDD+ Readiness. This document is shared to all stakeholders within the country and submitted to the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility Readiness Fund where it is independently reviewed and assessed before the grant is allocated.
Reduced Impact Logging
Timber harvesting techniques that significantly reduce the environmental impact of timber extraction on forests and soils. Examples of RIL include directional felling, trimming of inter-crown vines, and careful road planning.
The direct human-induced conversion of previously forested land to forested land through planting, seeding and/or the human-induced promotion of natural seed sources. The CDM and VCS standards have varying definitions of this term.
A method of measuring deforestation and/or forest degradation by a recording device that is not in physical contact with the forest, such as a satellite.
The deduction of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere, for example, by trees during the process of photosynthesis.
Any process, activity or mechanism which removes a greenhouse gas, an aerosol, or a precursor of a greenhouse gas from the atmosphere.
Any process, activity or mechanism which releases a greenhouse gas, an aerosol or a precursor of a greenhouse gas or aerosol into the atmosphere.
The public, including individuals, groups or communities affected, or likely to be affected, by any proposed REDD+ project activity or actions leading to the implementation of an activity.
Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs, recognising that the economy, society and the environment are interconnected and interdependent.
Sustainable Forest Management
The management of forest areas to maintain and enhance the economic social and environmental value of all types of forests, for the benefit of present and future generations.
The tangible and intangible financial expenditures associated with transaction involving a REDD payment (the buyer and seller, or donor and recipient), as well as external parties such as a market regulator or payment system administrator.
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
An international agreement adopted in 1992 at the Rio Earth Summit. It is the framework guiding the international climate negotiations, including negotiations surrounding REDD+. Its main objective is the “stabilisation of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system”.
A process by which an independent third-party organization, which has been certified to evaluate projects according to a specific standard, thoroughly reviews the methodology, emission reductions claimed, equipment, standards, and processes employed during the particular monitoring period of project, ensuring that, for the duration of that monitoring period, the project follows the rules of the chosen standard and methodology and merits issuance of credits.
Voluntary Carbon Market
Transactions of Verified Emissions Reductions generated from projects certified under the voluntary certification standards comprise the voluntary carbon market. It is currently the only global market for the trade of REDD+ credits.