Biodiversity offsets are a form of conditional environmental financing. Like their more well-known cousin, carbon offsets, various parties (e.g. governments, companies or individuals) look to offset the damage they cause in one location by purchasing offset credits from an alternative location.
Reducing Emissions from forest Degradation and Deforestation (REDD) is a policy measure designed to stop forest damage by placing an economic value on forests remaining intact. It has been proposed at the international level in United Nations climate change negotiations, however exact details are still in development.
The Forest Carbon Partnership Facility is an initiative hosted by the World Bank and designed to assist ‘tropical and subtropical forest countries develop the systems and policies for REDD+’. REDD is an innovative market based instrument designed to place value on standing forests and so reduce emissions from forest destruction and deforestation.
The FCPF has two main components:
The UN-REDD Programme is a Multi-Donor Trust Fund established to support efforts at mitigating carbon emissions as a result of deforestation and forest degradation.
Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD) ‘is a cutting-edge forestry initiative that aims at tipping the economic balance in favour of sustainable management of forests’. REDD+ as a concept goes further than REDD by including conservation, sustainable forestry management (SFM) and enhancement of forest carbon stocks. The UN- REDD programme focuses on both.
The International Standards Organisation has developed a series of standards that specify principles and requirements for organisations involved in greenhouse gas emission reporting. The ISO standards can be seen as guiding protocols providing general guidelines for the development of other programmes or standards.
The World Trade Organisation (WTO) Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement claims to be the ‘most comprehensive multilateral agreement on intellectual property’.
It covers a host of intellectual property rights and claims including copyright, trademarks, geographical indicators, industrial designs, patents, layout designs for integrated circuits, and undisclosed information (trade secrets and test data). The Agreement sets out principles that govern WTO member states and their national Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) legislation
The World Trade Organisation (WTO) SPS agreements looks to cover ‘how governments can apply food safety and animal and plant health measures’ without creating unnecessary ‘obstacles to trade’.
The agreement looks to reconcile two positions:
1) Ensuring that food is safe (in a culturally appropriate context) for consumers to eat
2) Ensuring that such measures do not hinder trade and are not used as an excuse to favour domestic producers.
The World Trade Organisation (WTO) Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) looks to limit the protectionist effect that technical regulations and standards may have on free trade. It was agreed upon at the establishment of the WTO in 1995.
The Strategic Climate Fund (SCF) is one of two Climate Investment Funds administered by Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) and is designed to fund and pilot ‘new approaches with potential for scaled-up, transformational action aimed at a specific climate change challenge or sectoral response’.
The MDBs involved are: African Development Bank; Asian Development Bank; European Bank for Reconstruction and Development; Inter-American Development Bank; World Bank Group. In total the SCF commands a budget of US$ 1.9 billion and invests this through 3 targeted programmes:
The Global Environmental Facility unites 182 member governments in partnership with international institutions such as UN agencies, World Bank and international development banks. It aims to address global environmental issues. It invests in projects related to biodiversity, climate change, international waters, land degradation, the ozone layer, and persistent organic pollutants.