Implement in haste, repent at leisure



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This report is the third in a series which FERN and the Forest Peoples Programme (FPP) have published concerning the World Bank’s Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) since the facility was launched in Bali in December 2007. 

The first two reports analysed the implementation of the various stages of the FCPF ‘readiness’ process in a number of countries, with a particular attention to rights, consultation, free, prior and informed consent (FPIC), land tenure issues and the analysis and treatment of the underlying causes of deforestation. This third report examines the FCPF treatment of the same issues in the early roll-out of the FCPF Carbon Fund activities through an in-depth and critical analysis of a draft Emissions Reduction Project Idea Note (ER-PIN) developed for the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). 

While it is recognised that the ER-PIN for the DRC (March 2014) is not yet approved and may still be subject to 
revisions, this critique finds a number of serious systemic weaknesses in the FCPF process for policy formulation and project design already identified in previous FERN-FPP reports on the FCPF. In short, FCPF and government failures to safeguard land rights, protect traditional livelihood activities, conduct social risk analyses and ensure meaningful prior consultation already pinpointed in our earlier reports ‘Cutting Corners’ and ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ are now starting to become evident in the FCPF’s Carbon Fund operations. 

This case study concludes that unless major changes are made in FCPF planning, design and validation of emissions reduction programmes to ensure alignment with the FCPF Charter and international human rights standards, the FCPF Carbon Fund risks enabling seriously flawed REDD pilots that could generate negative impacts on indigenous peoples and local communities as the FCPF moves towards implementation of activities on the ground.