Policy Solutions


Photo credit: Alvaro Del Campo CIMA

The United Nations has developed a collaborative programme for saving threatened forests in developing countries, called Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD).

This programme works to recognise the importance of forests as a natural climate solution as well as provide a tool for channeling investment to this work. The primary goal is to reward developing countries for environmental stewardship, including the role of conservation, sustainable management of forests, and enhancement of forest carbon stocks, that leads to global climate mitigation and adaptation outcomes.

The UN-REDD programme has evolved over the last two decades to also focus on biodiversity, ecosystem, and livelihood benefits, represented by the ‘+’ in REDD+. So much so that the landmark 2015 global agreement on climate change formally recognised REDD+ as an effective mechanism for protecting forests.

This is really important because it represents an historic achievement in international cooperation on conservation and climate. REDD+ is the first internationally negotiated agreement on forest management in developing countries. It establishes a framework for environmental and social safeguards, emissions reductions accounting and financing, and contributes to achieving the goals of the global climate agreement.

REDD+ programmes around the world are still in the early phases of building capacity and being implemented. This includes establishing relevant institutions at national, regional, and local levels, baseline deforestation rates from which to measure emissions reductions, and financial arrangements for how countries receive ‘payments for performance’ on successful reducing deforestation.

Pioneering early projects have begun implementing ‘bottom-up’ REDD+ type activities in advance of national or regional ‘top-down’ systems being implemented. They use international standards to account for their climate, environmental and social impacts. All our projects are verified by the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) and the Climate, Community and Biodiversity (CCB) Standard which verify for robust climate benefits and wider co-benefits respectively. Learn more about these standards here.

At Ecosphere+

At Ecosphere+, our projects in Peru and Guatemala demonstrate the REDD+ concept in action. Here, the climate benefits of integrated sustainable land use and conservation activities are quantified and valued. These are then used as verified greenhouse gas emissions reductions, which we sell to businesses and individuals so that they can mitigate their unavoidable climate impact. Our projects are set to ‘nest,’ or become a part of, their national level REDD+ programmes as they are established.

Read more about our projects.