Vientiane Times, 16 December 2014
As the climate changes, many countries around the world have had to take on greater responsibility for forest protection and management.
Laos is one of the countries working hard on forestry conservation.
The Forestry Department last week held a Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) meeting in Vientiane to encourage the relevant sectors to participate in forest protection. The meeting was chaired by the department Deputy Director General, Mr Khamphay Manivong. The government has established targets for reafforestation set at 65 percent of cover by 2015 and 70 percent by 2020 but it faces severe challenges to reach these targets due to an increasing population and rapid development. Forests are referred to as carbon sinks as they absorb carbon dioxide from and release oxygen into the atmosphere, according to the World Bank’s senior Forestry Specialist, Mr Robert R. Davis.
Every decade since the 1960s global temperatures have been rising, 2012 was the warmest year in recorded history, he said.
Asia is important for REDD (reducing emission from deforestation and forest degradation) as about 20 percent of the world’s forests are in Asia and Oceania.
FCPF was launched at the 13th session of the conference of the parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Bali.
FCPF first began operations in June 2008. There are 47 participating developing countries in REDD which have been selected to join the FCPF (18 in Africa, 18 in Latin America, and 11 in the Asia pacific region).
Thirteen donors or contributors from both the public and private sectors are financially supporting the FCPF in Laos. After the country joined the FCPF it received two grants, US$200,000 for RPP (readiness, preparation and proposal) development implemented during 2009-2010 and US$3.6 million for RPP implementation and REDD+ readiness support. This grant became effective in August this year. The objective of the project is to contribute to Laos’ efforts to design and implement a sound national REDD+ strategy. The FCPF is designed to set the stage for a large-scale system of incentives for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries, providing a fresh source of financing for the sustainable use of forest resources and biodiversity conservation and for the more than 1.2 billion people who depend to a varying degree on forests for their livelihood.