Saving threatened habitats worldwide

Opposition to REDD+

29 November, 2011 - 12:59 -- John Burton

Funding Turned Down

Recently one of our partner organisations applied to a foundation for funding and it was turned down. Not uncommon, but what was unusual was that the foundation actually gave detailed reasons for refusing, and one of these was that REDD+ projects were being implemented by the NGO concerned, and the reasons for opposing REDD+ projects were that Carbon Trade Watch, Indigenous Environmental Network, Global Forest Coalition, Friends of the Earth International, were all apparently opposed to REDD+.

REDD+ the only option?

As you may imagine, the World Land Trust (WLT) is aware of all the arguments against REDD, but we believe it is also important to recognise that the organisations writing the reports against REDD are campaigning organisations, not implementers.  We are actually trying to do conservation (or rather fund our partners) on the ground. What the organisations campaigning against REDD don't always appreciate is that there aren't many viable alternatives to REDD, for those of us trying to preserve biodiversity

While I have every sympathy with the Anti-REDD stance, by the time the world catches up, millions more acres will have been lost.  My view is that taking a totally anti-REDD stance is fiddling while Rome burns.  The WLT actually only supports REDD+ (the plus is for biodiversity), for largely tactical reasons. Until those campaigning against REDD+ can come up with a viable alternative, I think it is by far the best option on the table for raising significant funds for biodiversity conservation. Many of the best biodiversity conservation NGOs are going to have to accept funding from this source, simply because there are few other sources.

This is a serious dilemma and views and comments from our supports would be useful

Find out more about REDD+


Submitted by Andrew on

I googled “what’s wrong with REDD” and the first two links make it pretty clear until it is disbanded the best way for funds to go is through responsible organisations like WLT. They also make it abundantly clear that there is not much time left before the other bad practices they site like pulp mills and oil palm (and any other misguided bandwagon like bio fuel ) gets rid of the last forests. The comments on “What to do instead of REDD” with references to “moratorium” and “indigenous rights” don’t give much hope, given thier track record.

Submitted by Chris Lang on

Thanks for this post - I think a discussion around these issues is critically important. But it's a bit difficult to comment not knowing who the partner organisation is, who the potential funder is, or what the fund-raising was for.

But I think it is important to point out that REDD is not the only way of saving forests, just as carbon trading is not the only way of raising money to protect forests. Here are two examples of organisations who want nothing to do with carbon trading but are raising money to protect rainforests: The Forest Trust ( and Size of Wales (

Given the fact that the carbon markets are collapsing (again) there is an urgent need for reliable sources of finance for forest protection. And given the fact that the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere increased at a record rate last year, there is an urgent need for climate solutions that actually reduce emissions rather than reduce emissions in one place only to allow pollution to continue somewhere else through the sale of carbon credits.

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