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Features & Commentary

Cambodia’s REDD+ Pilot Projects Contribute to Settlement of Forest Disputes

The UN-REDD National Programme in Cambodia has recently begun looking into using consensus building mechanisms from existing REDD+ pilot project sites to resolve forest and land-use disputes.
By: Heang Thy

In January, the UN-REDD National Programme in Cambodia hosted a field mission and associated meetings, bringing together a wide range of stakeholders, to identify preliminary options on how to strengthen consensus building mechanisms for forest disputes, based on international best practices and observations at  the two REDD+ pilot project sites. Participants included international experts in conflict resolution and stakeholder engagement, community forest network members, civil society and indigenous peoples representatives, as well as representatives from the provincial and national governments.

Participants of recent meeting in Cambodia discuss how REDD+ can help resolve forest and land use disputes.

The field mission and associated meetings have resulted in the assessment of the types of drivers of deforestation and forest degradation likely to lead to conflicts, identification of potential consensus building mechanisms and ways to strengthen them to prevent and resolve forest sector disputes/grievances; and a preliminary analysis of relationships among different state and non-state actors.  These results will be used as inputs in designing an effective consensus building and conflict resolution system for REDD+ in Cambodia.

In Cambodia, several factors are contributing to tensions over forest and land use in the country. Among these are the strong dependence of the people on agricultural activities for their livelihoods; new investments in large-scale commercial agriculture and mining; as well as Cambodia’s ongoing recovery from a turbulent history, which requires recreating cadastral mapping almost from scratch. In some areas, the result of these factors has been rapid deforestation and land degradation.

While Cambodia has a number of laws and regulations designed to minimize land use conflict and define the appropriate application of different land use categories, it faces continuing challenges to implement them. Many forest areas have not yet been demarcated or zoned, and the enforcement of boundaries, regulations and procedures is often challenged by the competing interests in forest lands from different state and non-state stakeholders. If not properly addressed, these competing interests risk undermining development efforts.

To help prevent and resolve disputes over the use of forest land, Cambodia has strong local institutions in its community forest management committees, commune councils, NGOs and local staff of national government agencies. At the provincial level, there is potential for closer collaboration among communes, provincial government and national forest and land management agencies to ensure appropriate land zoning for settlements, small scale agriculture and commercial uses. At the national level, there may be opportunities for government agencies to coordinate their land use decision making more closely, and to make national decision making more transparent and accessible to provincial and community stakeholders. The UN-REDD Programme in Cambodia will support further assessment and dialogue with stakeholders at all levels to strengthen dispute prevention and consensus building capacities.

Ms. Heang Thy is the Communication Officer for the Cambodia National Taskforce Secretariat, where she manages public outreach and relations efforts.







In this issue


Solomon Islands and Pakistan Move Forward with their National REDD+ Roadmaps

DRC Shares Lessons with Tanzania on Forest Monitoring Systems for REDD+

UN-REDD Partner Countries Increase their REDD+ Technical Expertise

Indonesia and UN-REDD to Host Global Symposium on REDD+ in a Green Economy

UN-REDD Launches Independent Evaluation of National Programme in Panama

UN-REDD Underscores Tenure as a Success Factor for REDD+

Features & Commentary

Cambodia’s REDD+ Pilot Projects Contribute to Settlement of Forest Disputes
By: Heang Thy

UN-REDD Launches Guidelines on Free, Prior and Informed Consent for REDD+
By: Gaya Sriskanthan

Moving from Global Advocacy to Country-level Actions on Anti-Corruption for REDD+
By: Estelle Fach and Tsegaye Lemma

Understanding REDD+ and FLEGT Linkages Through Country Experiences
By: Emelyne Cheney and Marjo Maidell

Reports & Analysis

Latest UN-REDD Policy Brief Now Available in French and Spanish

Call for Comments on UN Guide to Support Respect of Indigenous Peoples’ Rights by Private Sector

New Report on Economics of Forest Carbon Projects

New Go-REDD+ Issue Links REDD+ with Poverty Reduction

Looking ahead

FPIC and Anti-Corruption workshop with COICA
7 April, 2013: Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia

REDD+ Safeguards and Conflict Resolution workshop
9-13 April, 2013: Paraguay

Multiple Benefits Mapping workshop
8-24 April, 2013: Dar es Salaam and Morogoro, Tanzania

Latin America National Forest Monitoring System workshop
23-26 April, 2013: Tena, Ecuador

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