The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) held a consultation on REDD+ and Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) in South Sikkim, India, on 25 February 2019.
The objective of the meeting was to introduce the REDD+ concept – which stands for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation, enhancement, conservation and sustainable management of forests – to the participants, explain the extent & type of involvement needed from them in the development and implementation of the project and finally obtain the informed consent from participants
The proposed REDD+ will be developed in the Mamley-Kamrang Gram Panchayat Unit (GPU) under the umbrella of the National Mission on Himalayan Studies (NMHS) sponsored project ‘Coping with Uncertainties: Building Community Resilience and Ecosystem Based Adaptation to Climate Change in the Indian Himalayan Region (CwU)’.
The meeting kicked off with a welcome address by Mr Man Bahadur Manger, Panchayat President of 37 Mamley Kamrang GPU. In his address, Mr Manger acknowledged the importance and challenges of developing a REDD+ project in their area. This was followed by presentations from IUCN representatives including a brief overview of the CwU project and its ongoing activities in Sikkim, as well as a detailed explanation of the REDD+ project development process and level of community involvement.
Key messages reinforced that the proposed REDD+ project respects the communities rights and knowledge. The meeting was attended by 60 local farmers who were receptive to the project plan and willing to contribute towards its implementation.