Stewardship Agreements for REDD in Indonesia

Resolving the issue of who owns the forest is probably the biggest hurdle in the implementation of REDD+ in most countries and to succeed, legal structures and policy frameworks should promote ownership of the process by forest dependent communities. This is important because forest management initiatives must have the objectives of promoting both the wellbeing of forests and that of communities who rely on the forests as a source of livelihood.

To reconcile this, Indonesia has started to implement the Hutan Desa regulation which aims to resolve tenure conflicts through the provision of village forests. The agreement allows villages living in forest margins to become active forest management units. Although Hutan Desa is currently being applied in only one community in Indonesia, it offers lesson points for the large-scale application of the law to other communities.

Some of the points are analyzed in ASB’s latest policy brief 18 on "Stewardship Agreements to Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) in Indonesia”. The brief highlights the need to reduce transaction costs and streamlining of rules for wider application of the law; international support in dealing with bottlenecks such as tenure conflicts; informal social networks comprising of key stakeholders such as government officials, NGO’s, and researchers are also important in the process though they can take a long time to develop. Read full policy brief

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