Argentina Holds R-PP Socialization Workshop
With the support of the UN-REDD Programme, Argentina’s Secretariat of Environment and Sustainable Development held a workshop to present and discuss Argentina’s R-PP on 4 November 2013 in Buenos Aires.
The objective of the workshop was to increase stakeholder participation and socialization of the REDD+ readiness process amongst the different stakeholders in Argentina.
In drafting the R-PP and public policies related to native forests and climate change, a main priority for Argentina has been the participation of all interested stakeholders. The vision is that the drafting and execution process of the preparation plan should be meaningful and inclusive, with the objective of creating a common vision on a REDD+ strategy in the national context and achieving full participation from stakeholders.
In this regard, the Secretariat of Environment and Sustainable Development has been developing a constructive process with different actors to expand participation and receive inputs from different sectors. This workshop was essential to this process because it allowed for various stakeholders to participate in planning from the early stages. Workshop participants included representatives from indigenous communities, civil society, provincial governments and national universities.
The first half of the workshop included presentation of each of the R-PP components and general overview on REDD+. Representatives from different regions outlined the relevant difficulties that affect their habitats, for example, indiscriminate logging, increase of soy, sugar cane and other crops in Jujuy, cultivation of vid (grapevines) in Salta, and non-native plantations in Tucuman. Participants’ questions and comments proved useful in discussing the environmental aspects of REDD+, such as the definitions of deforestation, plantations, and forest degradation, but also in discussing social aspects such as safeguards and prior consultation.
Throughout the workshop, there were open discussions among participants. Indigenous peoples’ representatives impressed the need for transversal and intercultural communication so that their perspectives are taken into consideration before decisions are made related to REDD+, and so they may fully participate and exercise their rights. Indigenous leaders were reassured by Dr. Silvia Revora, Undersecretary of the Environmental Policies and Planning Sub-Secretariat, that “once funding is received, it will be possible to apply the funds in consensus with all of you.” The Undersecretary also mentioned that this process “would be a collective one, involving the academic sector, indigenous communities, civil society and Creole communities.”
At the end of the workshop, UN-REDD Programme representatives distributed surveys to the participants in order to generate a baseline with which to begin measuring changes in participants understanding of REDD+ and allow for Argentina’s UN-REDD Project Coordination team to recognize which areas need more attention in order to improve stakeholder’s understanding of REDD+.