Taking Adaptation Value Seriously: Designing REDD to Protect Biodiversity
Negotiations at Copenhagen are expected to address the design of a mechanism for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD) for inclusion in a post-Kyoto agreement. Several country proposals and non-governmental assessments suggest that REDD may have significant benefits for biodiversity. This article observes that such benefits are closely aligned with the adaptation goals of the climate change regime. However, adaptation goals will not necessarily benefit from, and may in fact be harmed by, a REDD mechanism focused solely on carbon value. Therefore, this article proposes that the REDD mechanism include specific incentives for biodiversity-enhancing projects. The article discusses the details of administering a “biodiversity-enhancing” designation and suggests two types of incentives that should attach to the designation as a means of supporting biodiversity-enhancing projects and attracting investment.