09 NOV 2023
The land-based carbon market: Perspectives from the global South
The 1.5°C goal of the Paris Agreement and its underlying climate models rely not only on rapid emission reductions, but also on large-scale afforestation and changes in land use practices. The land-based carbon market, selling credits to emitters – companies or state actors – worldwide, has experienced strong growth in recent years. But the extent to which these credits help mitigate the climate crisis is highly contested. Carbon projects have led to an increased pressure on land, even to land grabbing, particularly in the Global South. At the same time, there is a finance gap for climate change adaptation projects in regions most vulnerable to climate risks. In the HEKS/EPER Land Forum 2023, we invite speakers to give perspectives from the Global South on if and how this market could be used, or what would be radical alternatives for climate justice beyond carbon colonialism. Programme To include speakers and welcome participants from all time-zones, we will hold this year’s land forum online in three 2-hour sessions. Thursday, 2 November 2023, 13-15h CET: Understanding the System: The Land-Based Carbon Market and its Impacts on the Ground Land-based carbon projects play an increasingly important role in scenarios to limit global warming to 1.5°C. First, keynote speakers introduce the land-based carbon market as it exists today, its evolvement and main actors, and give their perspectives on its opportunities and risks. Second, based on project examples from Sierra Leone and, Uganda, we will examine the effects of carbon credit projects on land rights, local communities and ecosystems. Thursday, 9 November 2023, 13-15h CET: Improving the System: Avoiding Land and Human Rights Violations, Strengthening Climate Resilience Land-based carbon credit projects bear the risks of land and human rights violations, adverse biodiversity outcomes and insufficient carbon sequestration. We discuss concrete actions to improve the carbon market, such as strengthened safeguards to ensure Free, Prior and Informed Consent of affected people and alternative solutions to using ‘tons of sequestered carbon’ as the primary indicator, from a climate resilience perspective. We also hear about financing mechanisms to mobilize private sector money to finance climate change adaptation. Thursday, 16 November 2023, 13-15h CET: Changing the System: Alternatives towards Climate Justice beyond Carbon Colonialism How can climate justice be achieved outside the existing carbon credit system? We discuss the meaning of Carbon Colonialism and its links to the history of land dispossession.Based on examples of communities’ struggles to defend and protect their forests against corporate deforestation, we learn how we can best support these environmental defenders. From an NGO’s standpoint, we analyze the most suitable project and financing modalities to ensure truly emancipatory, decolonial and effective forest projects. Last but not least, we reflect on how a just tax system could raise the financial resources needed for more climate justice.