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Research Report

Lessons for REDD+ from measures to control illegal logging in Indonesia

Cecilia Luttrell
Krystof Obidzinski
Maria Brockhaus
Efrian Muharrom
Elena Petkova
Andrew Wardell
James Halperin
Copyright Date: Jan. 1, 2011
Pages: 90
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. 1-2)

    Indonesia has committed to reducing its emissions from land use, land use change and forestry (LULUCF) by 26% by 2020 (GoI 2010). One way the country plans to meet this target is by reducing its emissions from deforestation and forest degradation through the REDD+ mechanism. By implementing REDD+, Indonesia will become eligible to receive financial payments based on forest carbon credits. A substantial amount of Indonesia’s carbon emissions are caused by deforestation and forest degradation from land conversion activities, forest fires and illegal logging, with the latter having significant impacts as a driver of deforestation. Therefore, initiatives to curb illegal...

  2. (pp. 3-13)

    Illegal logging is one of the major drivers of deforestation in Indonesia (Schloenhardt 2008); it also contributes greatly to forest degradation. Although illegal logging emerged as a threat to Indonesia’s forests in the late 1990s, national forestry statistics suggest it had been occurring since at least the mid-1980s (World Bank 2006). ‘Illegal logging’ refers to a range of activities at many stages along the supply chain:

    Illegal felling of timber in both production and conservation forest zones. For example, in production forest areas, logging companies often extract timber illegally by felling trees outside their allocated blocks, by harvesting timber in...

  3. (pp. 14-20)

    The concept of reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD) originated from the submission of countries in the Coalition for Rainforest Nations (CRN), led by Papua New Guinea and Costa Rica, at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of the Parties 11 (UNFCCC COP 11) in Montreal in 2005. The submission gained momentum at COP 13 in Bali, Indonesia, in 2007 and was formalised in ‘The Bali Action Plan’. The action plan summarised REDD+ as:

    Policy approaches and positive incentives on issues relating to reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries; and the...

  4. (pp. 21-40)

    International legitimacy is a crucial aspect for both REDD+ and FLEGT–VPA as it ensures the sustainable flow of finance (whether fund or market based); domestic legitimacy is important to ensure that the process is nationally owned and has public oversight. Therefore, a key requirement for both REDD+ and FLEGT–VPA is the establishment of an MRV system that has domestic acceptance and international credibility and, therefore, a certain level of sophistication. Attention to credibility and legitimacy (both these principles feature in the IPCC Good Practice Guidelines) can be enhanced by attention to clear standards, traceability of the product (be...

  5. (pp. 41-51)

    One of the key challenges for REDD+ is how to meet international demands whilst creating national ownership over the process (Abrahamsen 2010). Why is this important? Cashore and Stone (2010) suggest that governments may be resistant if they are ‘forced’ to take part in efforts which they otherwise might not have, but that they are likely to be supportive if the process is focused on helping them to achieve their domestic targets. Indeed, a key element blocking progress of the REDD+ debate in Indonesia is the widely held perception that the mechanism will undermine sovereignty and the interests of the...

  6. (pp. 52-55)

    An important question is the role of government in the design of the SVLK. One of the concerns of the EU–Indonesia FLEGT VPA Experts (2010) was the way the SVLK interacts with ongoing regulatory inspections of various government agencies and how the results of these inspections can affect the legality certificates if, for example, non-compliance is detected. The SVLK, as it has been designed, can be termed ‘privatised regulation’, whereby the MoF is not involved in accreditation or the auditing process and has no authority to sign off on the legal compliance of an operator. This means that the...

  7. (pp. 56-62)

    There have been 2 broad approaches to addressing illegal logging in Indonesia: law enforcement and trade-based measures such as FLEGT–VPA. Experiences with both approaches provide lessons for REDD+ in Indonesia in terms of process and impact. Process lessons are drawn from how the mechanism was designed. Outcome lessons consider the effects such measures have had, or may have, in reducing deforestation and forest degradation, and in addressing their underlying governancerelated causes. Attention to process is important for enhancing credibility and for engendering national ownership, both key features of a robust system. Several pertinent aspects of the design of the...

  8. (pp. 63-64)

    This section outlines some of the key lessons for the ongoing design of REDD+ as identified in this working paper.

    Adopt an approach that harmonises common REDD+ and SVLK MRV requirements. One such common requirement is the generation of accurate, complete and up-to-date data. Another is MRV capacity building, such as supporting data-sharing protocols within and across agencies, establishing linkages between databases used for the SVLK and REDD+ (e.g. inventories, management plans, harvest data) and compiling and sharing data on land use and land cover change, tenure, forest stock, type and location.

    Develop mechanisms for exchange of data and transparency...