The agenda item on “Reducing emissions from deforestation in developing countries and
approaches to stimulate action” was first introduced into the COP agenda at its eleventh
session in Montreal (December 2005).
The IPCC (2007) estimated emissions from deforestation in the 1990s to be at 5.8 GtCO2/year. It
also noted that reducing and/or preventing deforestation and preventing the release of carbon
emissions into the atmosphere is the mitigation option with the largest and most immediate carbon
stock impact in the short term per hectare and per year globally.
Parties to the UNFCCC process recognized the contribution of greenhouse gas emissions from
deforestation in developing countries to climate change and the need to take action to reduce such
emissions. After a two-year process, the COP adopted a decision on “Reducing
emissions from deforestation in developing countries: approaches to stimulate action” ( Decision 2/CP.13). The
decision provides a mandate for several elements and actions by Parties relating to reducing
emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries:
- Further strengthening and supporting ongoing efforts;
- Support for and facilitate capacity-building, technical assistance and transfer of technology
relating to methodological and technical needs and institutional needs of developing countries;
- Explore a range of actions, identify options and undertake demonstration activities to address
drivers of deforestation and enhance forest carbon stocks due to sustainable management of forests;
- Mobilize resources to support the efforts mentioned above.
The decision also provides a set of indicative guidance for the implementation and evaluation of
demonstration activities. Parties are also encouraged to apply the IPCC Good Practice Guidance
for Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry for estimating and reporting of emissions and
In 2008, the SBSTA initiated a programme of work on methodological issues
related to a range of policy approaches and positive incentives that reduce emissions from
deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries. The SBSTA reported on the
outcomes, including any recommendations on possible methodological approaches, to the COP at its fourteenth session (December
In 2008 and 2009, policy approaches and positive incentives relating to reducing emissions from
deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries and the role of conservation,
sustainable management of forests, and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing
countries have been considered under the process of the Bali Action Plan ( Decision 1/CP.13).