Although the outcome of COP 15 was seen as disappointing by many, there was significant progress on REDD+. To further REDD+ progress in the wake of the sluggish UNFCCC negotiations, more than 50 countries met in a series of meetings which culminated in Norway at the Oslo Climate and Forest Conference. The result of the conference was an agreement that provides a voluntary, non-binding framework for an interim REDD+ partnership.
The Partnership is being presented as a parallel process to the UNFCCC (the agreement references previous UNFCCC documents), not a way to sideline it. According the agreement, the Partnership will be replaced by any UNFCCC agreement (e.g., a REDD+ Mechanism) that might be reached in the future.
The Focus of the agreement is on supporting developing countries, which are asked to build capacity, including national monitoring systems, and identify drivers of deforestation. Payments to developing countries would not only support capacity, but would be based on performance in reducing emissions from deforestation. Developed countries are asked to provide scaled up funding to support developing countries in these efforts.
At the heart of the agreement is funding, and the understanding that there needs to be transparency on financing and on actions. With the call for scaled up financing comes the need for coordination and a way to maximize the efficiency of actions and of support. Since the initial USD 3.5 billion pledged at Copenhagen by six countries for the 2010-2012 time period, the total has climbed and currently stands at USD 4.0 billion with additional donor countries signing on.
The Partnership has agreed to continue to meet regularly, and will be co-chaired by both a developing and developed country partner, with the intention of maintaining transparency. Secretariat services will be provided by the UN REDD Programme and the Facility Management Team of the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility. The Partnership also aims to include the participation of indigenous groups, civil society and the private sector, as observers.
The two appendices include, one with a list of participating countries (58 as of May 27, 2010) and the second outlines the initial operational measures of the agreement, including the development of a publicly available database, designed by FCFP and UN REDD (with stakeholder input). The database will provide information on financing, actions and results, and will build on the efforts of Australia, PNG and France.