The Little Book of Legal Frameworks for REDD+

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A new book launched by the Global Canopy Programme describes how policy and legislation can create an enabling environment for REDD+

Safeguarding tropical forests Earth's richest natural capital

Global Canopy Programme

It is important to understand that the development of legal frameworks for REDD+ cannot be limited to the development of a standalone REDD+ law if it is to be truly effective.

A new book published by the Global Canopy Programme (GCP) and launched at the UN Climate Change negotiations in Lima, Peru, highlights the importance of clear domestic legal frameworks to prepare for REDD+ implementation, and presents a range of flexible solutions which can be adapted to the needs of individual countries as they work towards reducing forest emissions.

As forest countries prepare to implement REDD+ and receive results-based payments, a clear domestic legal framework of enabling policies and legislation is needed to ensure that national systems not only meet international requirements to deliver permanent emission reductions, but can also guard against the social and environmental risks created by REDD+, while also delivering co-benefits.

Louisa Denier, Senior Manager – Policy and lead author, the Global Canopy Programme, says, “It is important to understand that the development of legal frameworks for REDD+ – the policies, laws and regulations that support its design and implementation – cannot be limited to the development of a standalone REDD+ law if REDD+ is to be truly effective.”

The publication illustrates how, instead, the development of legal frameworks for REDD+ must build on existing domestic policies, laws and regulations in place in a country. Such an approach may also contribute to the realisation of other relevant goals such as national sustainable development.

Furthermore the publication also highlights how the legal framework for REDD+ can serve to address key governance challenges, such as corruption and transparency, without which REDD+ implementation will not be successful. Addressing these governance challenges can also be seen as a way of reducing uncertainty and risk for potential REDD+ investors, which is much needed as demand for REDD+ is currently lacking.

Notes to editors:

The book can be read and downloaded from the GCP website at

The Little Book of Legal Frameworks for REDD+ was funded by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), with additional support from Baker McKenzie, the Government of Canada’s Department of Natural Resources and the United Nations Office for REDD+ Coordination in Indonesia (UNORCID), and developed in collaboration with Climate Law and Policy.

About the Global Canopy Programme: The Global Canopy Programme (GCP) is a tropical forest think tank working to demonstrate the scientific, political and business case for safeguarding forest ecosystems as natural capital that underpins water, food, energy, health and climate security for all.

About REDD+: REDD+ is a global initiative designed to offer positive incentives to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD), and to promote the conservation, management and enhancement of forest stocks in developing countries (REDD+).

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