The Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) in its latest State of the World’s Forest Report (2011) emphasized the importance of forests for climate change mitigation and adaptation. The significance of forests for biodiversity and sustainable development was already addressed in Rio in1992 at the UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), adopting the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and separately also the Statement of Forest Principles. Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) in developing countries has become one of the major issues in the international climate negotiation, in particular within the UNFCCC framework, since it was first brought on the agenda in 2005. AtCOP16 in Cancun 2011 the agreement on REDD and establishment of a Green Climate Fund were amongst the most successful achievements.
REDD is based on the concept that GHG emissions can be reduced through the protection of (tropical) forests. According to the 4th Assessment Report of the International Panel of Climate Change (IPCC), emissions from deforestation and forest degradation account for 17.4 percent of the world’s total CO2 emissions The carbon stored in forests is attached with an economic value and REDD, creating financial and market incentives to protect forests, is thus considered an important climate change mitigation mechanism, as concluded by the British Stern Review in 2006. REDD is of national relevance for industrialized countries donating money to developing countries to protect their forests. However, as emission-reduction costs via the REDD mechanism are relatively low for industrialized countries, it should only be additional to national CO2 emission reduction efforts.This research project analyses the driving forces behind the national framing of REDD in industrialized countries.
The project is conceptualized as a comparative analysis, with Norway, Germany and Canada as the main case for this comparative analysis.