Smallholders, Rural Development and REDD in the Brazilian Amazon
REDD discussions with regard to forest peoples are based on an
implicit policy of command and control that combines investments
in government monitoring and enforcement capacity with direct
economic incentives to forest stakeholders. There is relatively little
emphasis on addressing the structural problems that lead smallholders to adopt strategies that result in deforestation and forest degradation. Rather than conceive REDD as a program to compensate smallholders for not deforesting, REDD should be seen as the basis of a longterm strategy for the sustainable development of tropical forest regions. We propose a three part, performance-based REDD smallholder development strategy that: 1) consolidates user-based forest governance institutions to reduce deforestation and forest degradation, 2) once initial deforestation targets have been achieved, provides funds to develop economic activities that conserve forests and improve household incomes, and 3) implements REDD payment schemes that enable smallholders to make the transition to sustainable household economic strategies.
1 February 2010