Ethiopia Forest fast-track implementation

Ethiopia, Forest fast-track implementation: Ethiopia’s action plan to create a green economy

One of the four initiatives that have been selected for fast-track implementation is Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD). The government is using significant resources to build and implement its green economy, but to capture the full potential of the plan; it welcomes the partnership with bilateral and multilateral development partners as well as contributions by the private sector.

Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD)

Deforestation and forest degradation account for one third of total emissions today. However, the forestry sector also offers huge abatement potential through reduced deforestation and forest degradation. In addition, it holds large potential for sequestration – which is underlined by the fact that already today Ethiopia has one of the largest afforestation and reforestation programmes in the world.

REDD+ offers the opportunity to implement forestry abatement levers and monetise the respective abatement potential in a structured way. Hence, we have already prepared a Readiness Preparation Proposal (R-PP) that lays out its plan to prepare for REDD+ implementation. This R-PP has been accepted and we are now ready for its REDD+ preparation. The preparation phase will include the setup of an organisational structure, the definition of a REDD+ strategy, as well as the preparation for implementation of concrete mitigation actions within REDD+.

The development of the REDD+ strategy builds on the existing experience and structures developed locally, and will enable a broader learning experience for all affected stakeholders. It will target to leverage the assessments of the main initiatives to mitigate deforestation and forest degradation, to identify implementing options, and to define the key enablers required at regulatory and institutional level.

The mitigation levers identified based on the work carried out by the CRGE initiative focus on addressing the main two drivers of deforestation and degradation (conversion to agricultural land and unsustainable fuelwood consumption), through a combination of proposed measures to increase agricultural yields, manage soils and forests better, and adopt alternative energy sources and energy efficient cooking technologies (Table). Particularly for the latter initiative, REDD+ will strongly interact with initiative 2 (rural energy).

Table: REDD+ – Identified levers for GHG mitigation

Macro levers Levers Description
Reduce pressure from agriculture on forests Agriculture intensification on

existing land

Decrease requirements for new agricultural land by increasing yield and value of crops
Prepare new land for agriculture through medium and large-scale irrigation Shift of new agricultural land from forest to degraded land brought into production due

to irrigation and use of natural fertilizer

Prepare new land for

agriculture through small-scale irrigation

Shift of new agricultural land from forest to degraded land brought into production due

to irrigation and use of natural fertilizer

Reduce demand for fuelwood Fuelwood efficient stoves Reduce wood requirements thanks to efficient stoves (mostly in rural areas)
Electric stoves Switch to electric stoves (in urban areas mostly)
LPG stoves Switch to LPG stoves
Biogas stoves Switch to biogas stoves (in rural areas)
Increase sequestration Afforestation and reforestation Large-scale afforestation and reforestation of degraded areas
Forest management Large-scale forest management programmes

Based on the previous work conducted in the field and the assessment of the mitigation levers, a series of REDD+ pilots will be identified. This could range from Participatory Forest Management and Conservation approaches, which support strengthened local user rights and sustainable forest management, to various initiatives designed to take pressure off the forest resources; including better management of previous plantations, and support for bamboo growth and use as well as intensified agro-forestry. All pilots will be assessed at the end of the R-PP implementation according to various criteria, including effectiveness, efficiency, and social justice. The better-performing strategies will be selected for scale up. Other key activities of this work are the development of a REDD+ learning network and a REDD+ good-governance project that supports the development of good governance around REDD+ pilots. Main changes in the regulatory environment to enable the proposed mitigation mechanisms to be implemented should, according to the consultations made in the preparation phase, focus on local people’s rights, develop a dedicated forestry institution, and better coordinate land-use planning. Taken together, REDD+ and the associated activities are intended to help capture the mitigation potential from forestry that has been estimated to be up to 130 Mt CO2e in 2030. The REDD+ initiative will help not only to put an institutional structure in place that supports the implementation of abatement levers in forestry, but also to finance these levers, e.g., by monetising abatement potential and putting in place the necessary prerequisites such as a reference scenario and an MRV (monitoring, review, and verification) system.

The Forestry sector is a significant contributor of GHG emissions, but it also offers a high abatement potential that even surpasses the estimated increase in emissions by 2030.

Source: CRGE, November 2011