The 1st REDD+ Awareness Workshop Held
The P.I Prof. John Tabuti presenting
Over 50 people from government, farmer organisations, private sector, media, NGOs, Research Institutions, universities, civil society , military academy , environmental NGOs and Human Rights networks on 28th July, 2015 convened at Esella hotel in Kampala for the 1st REDD+ Awareness,
workshop under the project titled, “Building capacity for REDD+ in East Africa for improved ecosystem health and for sustainable livelihoods in Eastern Africa (REDD-EA)". REDD+ is a global policy framework aimed at protecting (natural) forests currently under threat.
REDD stands for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation. In simple terms, this means protection of forests currently under threat.The plus “+” refers to conservation of forest carbon stocks; sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks. These 3 activities are aimed at increasing or conserving forest carbon stocks.
REDD-EA is a five year project (2014-2018) funded by the the Norwegian Programme for Capacity Development in Higher Education and Research for Development (NORHED)with an estimated cost of NOK 18 m which is approximately USD 3 million. In his opening remarks the project Principal Investigator from the Makerere University’s Department of Environmental Management Prof. John Tabuti said the project goal is to contribute to reduced greenhouse gas emissions and improved ecosystem health for sustainable livelihoods in Eastern Africa.
The project purpose is to strengthen the capacity for education and research on climate change and REDD+ at Makerere University and the University of Dar esSalaam throughstrengthening scientific and institutional capacity of academic institutions to deliver better quality education on REDD+.
The second purposes of the REDD+project is strengthening scientific and institutional capacity of academic institutions to deliver quality research on REDD+; and the other purpose is strengthening capacity of central government, local government, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), and community institutions to plan and implement REDD+.
Dr. Xavier Mugumya presented on REDD+ Implemetation in Uganda
The Project outputs are to develop adequate human capacity for REDD+ in Ugandan and Tanzanian Higher Education Institutions; create functional and specialized training programs on REDD+; and generate research capacity for REDD+ and evidence based results for policy on REDD+. Other outputs are to establish a functional Information system for REDD+ and to develop networks and partnerships between academic, research institutions and CSOs
The participants were trained on a number of topics including REDD+ and Climate change responses, REDD + and Adaption, REDD+ experiences in Uganda and REDD + Implementation in Uganda.
Dr. Lynne Carter, the Chief of Party USAID/Uganda Education and Research to Improve Climate Change Adaptation Activity told participants that Climate change is already happening and is mainly caused by human activity through developments and modern life
Dr. Lynne Carter presenting
“Climate change is disruptive to people, profit, and the planet. Most climate scientists agree and science supports policies. However, there is hope. We can limit the amount of change and the impacts if we choose Mitigation and Adaptation.” Dr. Carter emphasised
In her key message to the participants Dr. Carter warned that Model projections indicate that the future temperatures will continue to increase throughout the century with uncertainty regarding changes in annual precipitation.
“Extreme rainfall events will be more frequent and more intense. There will be an increase in the duration of dry spells—dryer conditions – even just from higher temps and Climate change will vary spatially. The US expert warned.
A Climate Adaptation specialist USAID/Uganda Education and Research to improve climate change adaptation activity based at Makerere University David Mfitumukiza said the protection of natural forests under threat has to do with climate change response in terms of response capacity that is, the ability of humans to manage both the generation of greenhouse gases and the associated consequences.
In groups discussing
The second and third climate change response capacities according to Dr. David Mfitumukiza are adaptive and mitigative capacity. The former refers to the ability or potential of a system to respond successfully to climate variability and change while the latter refers to the ability to reduce anthropogenic greenhouse gases or enhance natural sinks
“Adaptive and mitigative capacities are driven by similar sets of factors and depend on one another, they can reduce climate risks but they do so at different time scales. Mitigation (e.g. REDD+) reduces future climate risks while Adaptation addresses current and committed climate change” he said.
He said there are increasing calls to better integrate these two fields because of long lag times in the climate system. He warned that no mitigation efforts will be able to prevent climate change. Conversely, reliance on adaptation alone would lead to a large magnitude of climate change, to which it would be very expensive to adapt.
Mfitumikiza observed that a REDD+ project is more likely to be sustainable and its carbon to be permanent if it integrates adaptation measures for communities and ecosystems. He also noted that integrating adaptation can also increase the local legitimacy of the REDD+ effort, as adaptation puts emphasis on local needs.
“An adaptation effort contributing to mitigation may benefit from carbon funding and capacity building from international instruments such as REDD+. Adaptation donors may favor projects with global benefits such as mitigation, in addition to the local adaptation benefits” he added.
The adaptation features of REDD+ framework include Carbon sequestration in agricultural soils that offers a positive link from REDD+ to adaptation, Improved management of existing protected and conservation areas, biodiversity and ecosystem services, Creating alternative/diversified livelihoods and Support to multi-scale land use planning and analysis.
A section of participants