Community-based Monitoring, Reporting and Verification of REDD Projects: Innovative Potentials for Benefit Sharing
Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) has rapidly become a key focus of discussions in the development of a future climate change regime to be agreed at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) meetings in Copenhagen. While support for REDD at a general level is high, there remains considerable divergence on detailed issues of implementation. Monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) of REDD projects to accurately quantify emissions reductions is a key issue, particularly given that there is limited capacity to undertake MRV at the level required by the international community in the developing countries where REDD projects are intended to take place. This paper discusses the importance of MRV to REDD and the potential of community-based mechanisms to improve capacity, as well as helping to address other contentious issues such as equitable benefit-sharing. The paper will focus on Papua New Guinea (PNG), drawing lessons of applicability to developing countries more generally.