Indonesia president delivers promised REDD+ agency

by Julie Mollins, CIFOR | @jmollins | CIFOR (Center for International Forestry Research)
Thursday, 12 September 2013 10:25 GMT

* Any views expressed in this opinion piece are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.

New decree aims to fulfill a 2010 deal with Norway

A new decree signed by the Indonesian president to create a national agency aimed at combating greenhouse gas emissions signals progress in the country’s efforts to tackle global warming, said a scientist with the Center for International Research.

The REDD+ (Reducing Emissions through Deforestation and Forest Degradation) agency, which will report directly to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, fulfills one among several criteria detailed in a climate change partnership agreed in 2010 with Norway.

“I congratulate the announcement of the long-awaited agency,” said Daniel Murdiyarso, a principal scientist with CIFOR. “However, this is only the beginning of huge tasks associated with forest and land governance.”

Under the terms of the agreement outlined in a letter of intent, the two countries opened the door to developing policy on REDD+, a U.N.-backed framework for reducing emissions caused by deforestation and forest degradation.

The framework, which is still being debated by governments involved in international climate talks, assigns financial value to carbon stored in trees, creating a potential incentive to keep them standing. Debates over how to measure, report and verify (MRV) carbon emission reductions stalled the 2012 U.N. climate change negotiations in Doha, Qatar.

“I’m curious how the MRV system and institution will be developed and demonstrate its independent nature,” Murdiyarso said.

The full text of the decree can be read here.