LEAF Draft Methodological Framework for Developing Reference Levels for REDD+



The LEAF (Lowering Emissions in Asia's Forests) website includes a variety of resources (by topic, type or country) and tools related to technical capacity building focused on REDD+, climate change mitigation, gender mainstreaming, and policy and market incentives for improved forest management and land-use planning in Asia. 

This document is a draft methodological framework to help FCPF countries enhance their near term capacity for producing national forest reference emission levels (REL) and/or forest reference levels (RL) for REDD+ as part of their eventual REDD+ Readiness Packages. These readiness packages are essentially summaries of countries’ efforts to achieve REDD+ Readiness after implementing the studies laid out in its R-PP. This framework is needed to guide countries in understanding what methods and data should be used, over what timeframe, how to adjust historic emissions for national circumstances and what approaches are already available for developing RL/RELs. This framework should be used in partnership with the separate Decision Support Tools.

Although the UNFCCC is the eventual source of official guidance on RLs, the methodological framework will enhance countries’ technical efforts in the near term.

The framework is not intended to be prescriptive, but rather is meant to outline the decisions and steps needed to develop a RL/REL, the capacity, data, and technical steps needed to carry out each component, and where appropriate whether an action can be considered as “no regrets”, i.e. countries can implement the action now with clear benefits to the country outside of the REDD+ process. It is a practical tool that will be immediately useful for countries and analysts for designing not only a REDD+ RL/REL but also a REDD+ monitoring system.


Harris, Nancy
Pearson, Timothy
Brown, Sandra
Andrasko, Ken
Lotsch, Alex
Kapp, Gerald