REDD+ is a voluntary climate change mitigation framework that has been developed by Parties to the UNFCCC. REDD+ stands for “Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation”; the “+” signifies the role of conservation, sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks. https://unfccc.int/topics/land-use/workstreams/redd/what-is-redd
REDD+ is incorporated in the Paris Agreement under Article 5. It occupies a special position within the international climate policy. Where most measures are only aimed at reducing CO2-emissions, REDD+ also protects biodiversity and the position of local people. REDD+ provides a framework to organize rainforest conservation projects around the world. At the moment this is still on a voluntary basis, but it is expected that REDD+ will be incorporated in mandatory systems over time.
As a concept, REDD is simple. It involves payments to (parties in) developing countries that will prevent deforestation or forest degradation that would otherwise have taken place. One of the main sources of such funding comes from carbon trading, where actors in industrialised countries offset their own unavoidable emissions on a voluntary basis by purchasing carbon credits from REDD+ projects.
The payments then go towards actions to conserve or sustainably use the forests (say, through more appropriate harvesting of wood and other forest products), that would otherwise not have taken place. The generated money can also be used to improve the use of the surrounding agricultural area, which further reduces the pressure on the forest. In order to guarantee the quality of the credits, most companies, including the members of RBI, only purchase certified credits (VCS and CCB).
Next to this agreements with governments are needed to properly embed (nest) the project in national forest and climate policy in order to make sure that:
Forest conservation in one place cannot be associated with additional forest loss elsewhere;
Forests are monitored for forest loss in the context of the climate convention.
The REDD+ Business Initiative (RBI) is a non-commercial initiative with the aim to mobilize businesses to voluntary use certified carbon credits from REDD+ projects to offset their unavoidable carbon emissions. By doing our company members help safeguard undisturbed rainforests for their huge CO2 storage capacity, their wealth of biodiversity and the ecosystem services they deliver to local and global communities.
As most REDD+ projects are not only based on the sale of carbon credits but also on the sale of sustainable commodities, also companies that wish to purchase such commodities from REDD+ projects are welcome as members of RBI.
RBI aims to contribute to the further development of REDD+ as well as the still fragmented voluntary carbon market in a practical way, highlighting good practices and solutions rather than focussing on problems.
The purposes of the REDD+ Business initiative and it’s mode of operation are secured in a Memorandum of Understanding, signed in the Spring of 2020.
The REDD+ Business Initiative is complementary to other initiatives in the sense that it is:
Encourages participation from companies in all sectors, not just energy or agriculture;
Is comprehensive; it focuses not only on reducing the pressure on the forest, but also on giving the intact forest itself economic value;
Focuses on all stakeholders; not only the private sector and the local population, but also policy makers;
Gives direct access to credits without intermediaries.
By joining RBI you will get support for integrating REDD+ in your business strategy, resulting in:
Concrete, measurable results on climate change mitigation, biodiversity conservation and the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals;
Access to the rapidly growing voluntary carbon market;
Direct interaction with the most important actors in this field (NGOs, NL & EU Governments);
An international stage to present your company as part of a powerful coalition.
By participating in the RBI you realize multiple sustainability goals at once. You combat climate change, preserve global biodiversity of global importance and strengthen the local economy in developing countries.
The CO2-credits you purchase for offsetting your unavoidable CO2-emissions can help your company to quickly realize targets like carbon neutrality. This comes, on top of measures to reduce your company’s own GHG-emissions and those in your supply chain, not instead of it.
You don’t do this alone, but together with other, like-minded companies. Together we draw attention to the importance of conserving tropical forests as part of climate policy. The RBI is a leading business co-operation on REDD+, which means that you can also profile yourself internationally. By doing so, the green profile of your company gets more content and coherence, which is also motivating for your customers and your employees.
To join us follow this link.
Companies that endorse the principles of the MoU, demonstrably invest in REDD+ and want to make this public, but that do not invest in the desired size and / or are unwilling to pay the fee for the RBI, can register as supporters of the RBI. They are then included in the external statements of the RBI, but can not represent it.
The size of purchases of supporters will also be included in the external statements of the RBI.
For more information on the Tambopata Flagship project follow this link.
The following documents provide more background information on how REDD + works.