Letter to the editor on The Economist, 07 October 2010
“SIR – Your special report on forests (“Seeing the wood”, September 25th) succinctly captured the fact that monetary flow through the Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) mechanism to forest communities is slowed by the problems of unclear land ownership. A key factor in the success of REDD is the application of geospatial technology in the form of geographical information systems (GIS) to collate, map and report forest carbon emission information to investors and international regulatory agencies.
“GIS is the same technology that under-pins the determination of property lines and land tenure, as well as the mapping of land-use patterns in general. Thus investments in REDD, by providing support for implementing GIS for forestry, have a dual benefit. They not only allow those countries to meet the requirements to validate REDD payments but also help them to establish the technical basis for economic development. It isn’t the solution, but it is a start.
“D. James Baker
Global Carbon Measurement Programme
The William J. Clinton Foundation