This Note focuses on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD), an international framework that aims to curb carbon emissions by reducing deforestation. While international negotiators discuss the environmental benefits of REDD, which will likely be implemented in the Kyoto Protocol’s post-2012 commitment period, forest-dwelling indigenous communities worry that REDD will destroy their livelihoods. Countries with high deforestation rates, such as Brazil and Indonesia, have already implemented a number of voluntary REDD pilot projects and are currently creating legal frameworks to address the complexities of REDD. This Note compares the legal frameworks of Brazil and Indonesia in terms of how well they protect indigenous rights. Ultimately, the lives of indigenous peoples will be most affected by national laws that govern the implementation of REDD. Accordingly, this Note provides suggestions on how to build a legal framework that capitalizes on the environmental and economic benefits of REDD while protecting the rights and livelihood of indigenous peoples.
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December 2015 | Vol. 84, No. 3