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UNEP sponsors talks on including ecosystem services in “avoided deforestation” regime; aims to establish avoided deforestation as part of voluntary and regulated markets for CO2 dumps

Posted by gmarkets on 11 October, 2007

Deforestation accounted for 20 to 25 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions and was a primary cause of biodiversity loss world wide, according to the Ad Hoc Open-Ended Working Group on Review of Implementation of the Convention at its Second Meeting, 9-13 July 2007, in Paris, France, which was devoted to developing International Payments for Ecosystem Services (IPES).

Avoided Deforestation: Establishing Avoided Deforestation (AD) as a form of IPES – specifically a payment for reduced GHG emissions through continued carbon sequestration if AD is included in carbon markets – generated opportunities and challenges for protecting other forest-related ecosystem services, the Group said. This was particularly true of service provision founded on biodiversity protection. This UNEP-IUCN side event would discuss AD’s potential to include ecosystem services (with a special focus on biodiversity protection) into the voluntary and regulated markets for carbon sequestration. In this way, the IPES approach offered the opportunity to bundle payments for these different ecosystem services into one overall payment for AD, achieving multiple conservation goals at an overall lower cost.

Event for newcomers and experienced participants: The side event content was designed to appeal to newcomers to the topic, as well as those with experience in the fields of IPES and avoided deforestation. It would include an introduction to the key issues concerning avoided deforestation and IPES. A second presentation included a UNEP-IUCN working paper on options for linking carbon sequestration and biodiversity related ecosystem services through AD.

Agenda: The Agenda for the event was:

  • UNEP-IUCN Welcome and Introduction (Fulai Sheng);
  • UNEP Economics and Trade Branch (Joshua Bishop);
  • IUCN General information on IPES and UNEP-IUCN IPES work programme;
  • Avoided Deforestation and IPES (Alain Karsenty, CIRAD, France) – An introduction to the core ideas and issues concerning avoided deforestation and its importance for IPES discussions.
  • Presentation of BioEcon Paper on Avoided Deforestation (Annah Peterson, UNEP Economics and Trade Branch) – Current thoughts on how to link carbon sequestration and biodiversity related ecosystem services through avoided deforestation, as will be presented at BIOECON in September 2007.
  • Open Discussion;
  • Close of meeting.

Reference: Louise Gallagher, UNEP Economics and Trade Branch, International Environment House, 11 – 13 Chemin des Anémones , CH-1219 Geneva , Switzerland, Phone: +41 22 917 8609.

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