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Research Report

Adaptation policies and synergies with REDD+ in Democratic Republic of Congo: Context, challenges and perspectives

Félicien Kengoum
Copyright Date: Jan. 1, 2015
Pages: 57
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. ix-ix)

    This document is part of a series presenting the results of a set of studies conducted by the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) in the framework of its project entitled Climate Change and Forests in the Congo Basin: Synergies between Adaptation and Mitigation (COBAM).

    Initiated in 2010 by CIFOR, COBAM’s objective was to capture and present the dynamic of actors and institutions in order to give decision makers useful information that could help them in their choice of options with regard to climate policy.

    The project resulted in the publication of documents analyzing national contexts of five countries of...

  2. (pp. xii-xii)

    Forests cover nearly 30% of the Earth's surface (FAO 2001; Dresner et al. 2007). The Congo Basin contains the second largest tropical forest after the Amazon, representing 17% of the world’s coverage. Forests are considered as important carbon sinks and reservoirs (Laurance 2007). Their destruction contributes to approximately 17.4% of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions caused by human activity (FAO 2001; Dresner et al. 2007; IPCC 2007a). As well, nearly 70% of the increase in GHG emissions between 1970 and 2004 are attributed to human activities. This trend will continue to increase if appropriate policy measures are not envisaged (IPCC...

  3. (pp. 1-4)

    To reach the objectives set for this study, on the one hand, we have developed a conceptual framework around concepts of integration and policy coherence for development of climate policy and of synergies between mitigation and adaptation to climate change. On the other hand, these concepts are examined based on decision theory in the context of uncertainty in order to understand the choice of policy options for mitigation and adaptation in DRC, a country of many uncertainties.

    In general, the development framework incorporates many other sectoral policies. The novelty of the paradigm of the fight against climate change raises many...

  4. (pp. 5-6)

    This section consists of two parts: the process of data collection, and the tools used to process and analyze the data.

    To achieve the objectives of this study, primary and secondary data were collected both quantitatively and qualitatively. The collection took place in two phases in the city of Kinshasa: from 1 to 16 March 2013 and then from 20 October to 2 November of the same year.

    The primary data were obtained using semistructured interviews with top political actors; and documentation incorporated by legal texts (national legislation, laws and decrees), policy documents and programs, and reports of sectoral and...

  5. (pp. 7-9)

    A glance at the development policies with regard to climate policy shows that they put man and nature at their center. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) provide an interesting framework in this perspective. Eight objectives of MDGs were set to evaluate the progress made in the field of development, in line with specific indicators (Box 1). One of the tools used in this perspective is the Human Development Index (HDI), which is presented as an interesting tool with which to assess the proportion of development that affects human well-being. Its calculation considers the essential dimensions of health, longevity, access to...

  6. (pp. 10-19)

    The systems of governance are important to setting up frameworks for the formulation, financing and implementation of adaptation strategies at several levels (Brockhaus et al. 2012), thus showing the importance of analyzing the context of forest governance of the DRC in relation to the vulnerability of populations to climate change.

    DRC is home to the largest share of the Congo Basin forest, with an area variously evaluated at 145 million hectares (Debroux et al. 2007), 154,135,000 hectares (Blaser et al. 2011; FAO 2011) and 155.5 million hectares (de Wasseige et al. 2009; Mertens and Belanger 2010). If the agreement about...

  7. (pp. 20-25)

    The process of establishing a national strategy for adaptation in the DRC is still incomplete on three points: the objectives, instruments and the institutions responsible for its management. The dispersion of efforts to respond to climate shocks, particularly in the forest regions, coupled with the structural and conjectural constraints mentioned above, suggest that there should be reconstitution policy options for adaptation to climate change. To that end, a methodological approach of the study should be appropriate. Identified options will be polished at the time that policy options in the development of a national strategy for adaptation in DRC are chosen....

  8. (pp. 26-29)

    No assessment of the integration and coherence of climate and development policies has been made in the context of DRC to date. We will first deal with this before reflecting on potential synergies within the same climate policy.

    Integration of policies entails taking into account the various sectors of developmental, environmental and nonenvironmental factors in the political process. It also refers to the efforts by policy makers to aggregate the possible consequences of observed changes in the climate and the assessments of policies, with a view to minimizing the contradictions of climate policy with other sectoral policies (Underdal 1980; Van...

  9. (pp. 30-32)

    The efforts devoted to fight against climate change in DRC explain the existence of many policies. These policies provide opportunities to ensure that institutional arrangements are in place that are likely to jointly benefit mitigation and adaptation to climate change. However, current policy structures pose risks for the efforts undertaken.

    Over several years, many mechanisms have changed DRC traditions in terms of management of climate risks. After the introduction of CDM and REDD+ as efforts to mitigate climate change, the DRC has assigned itself adaptation missions. A set of dynamics are today in progress and tend to harmonize the actions...

  10. (pp. 33-33)

    The issues involving the synergies between adaptation policies and REDD+ in the DRC have led to debates on multisectoral and multilevel governance for developing countries. In DRC, the political process around adaptation to climate change is still in development. The current efforts have not yet found their place in the political agenda at the intersectoral level and have been appropriated only at the national level by the Ministry of the Environment (MECNT). Initiatives on climate change at the local level cannot help build consensus around specific options for responses to climate change in a perspective of adaptation and mitigation. Multiple...