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International Journal of Biodiversity Science & Management Vol. 5, No. 1, March 2009, 1–9 Regulation of small-scale carbon sink projects in the clean development mechanism from the perspective of aspects of multidisciplinary biodiversity Marko Heiskanen* Faculty of Law, Economics and Business Administration, University of Joensuu, P.O. Box 111, FIN-80101 Joensuu, Finland This paper considers the current regulatory framework of small-scale carbon sinks in the clean development mechanism (CDM). The legal characteristics are assessed from perspectives related to regulation theory. To what extent does CDM regulation support active biodiversity management in the small-scale implementation of afforestation and reforestation projects? After analysing the above question, fresh concepts for better consideration of biodiversity aspects during the implementation of small-scale carbon sink projects in developing countries are presented. These new concepts are examined in the framework of the current process of legal establishment, which seeks to encourage cost-effective project implementation in cases where biodiversity impacts are appropriately taken into account during small-scale projects. Is it possible to create a workable and plausible conceptual set-up for considering additional efforts to preserve and enhance biodiversity while sequestering carbon – and to do it in a way that makes it possible to reward those efforts in the CDM framework? These questions are discussed here in a multidisciplinary manner. It is found that biodiversity specialized carbon management, which includes the new concepts, can be seen as a potential small-scale project framework for maintaining biodiversity and local development in and around a small-scale project area. Keywords: biodiversity supplement system (BSS); biodiversity specialized carbon management; biodiversity additionality; biodiversity permanence; biodiversity leakage Introduction Harrison et al. (2002) noted a recent paradigm shift in the forestry sector to small-scale, multiple product-based, Carbon sink projects have been included into the Clean people-oriented and community-based sustainable forest Development Mechanism (CDM), the arrangement under management. The CDM has, since 2004, expanded the the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework multiple product-based function of small-scale forestry in Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that allows developing countries, adding the carbon sequestration func- industrialized countries that have committed to reducing or tion. Moreover, regarding the CDM’s dual aim of achieving limiting greenhouse gas emissions to invest in projects that cost-effectiveness and sustainable development defined in reduce emissions in developing countries as an alternative to Article 12 of the Kyoto Protocol, biodiversity values are one more expensive emission reductions in their own countries more product of a small-scale project with legally-binding (Decision 5/CMP.1). There is still a need to accumulate more status. The legal frameworks of biodiversity conservation practical experience in developing countries on implement- and carbon sequestration need to be integrated. The con- ing these projects. Small-scale implementation of carbon sink ceptual framework of this institutional interplay between projects is one of the newest challenges. A long history of the biodiversity and climate change regimes is still being investment in small-scale forestry is common, for example, developed (Kim 2004). Despite its incompleteness, this in Europe but not in developing countries (Harrison 2001). development is in line with the recent trend in environmen- Biodiversity levels are also generally high in developing tal law, from a more sectoral approach to a more integrated countries (Huston and Marlan 2003). Tropical forests contain one (Faure and Niessen 2006a). 70% of the world’s plants and animals, 70% of all vascular Attempts to rise to the cost-effectiveness challenges plants, 30% of all birds and more than 90% of all inverte- have led to arguments that the current maximum limit of brates (Sands 2005). Although no small-scale carbon sink 8ktofCO sequestered per year for a small-scale carbon project activity has been registered by the Executive Board sink project is not high enough, and should be further (EB) of the CDM thus far, many small-scale emission reduc- tion project activities already exist. The biodiversity-rich increased to improve the cost-effectiveness of small-scale developing countries with no history of small-scale forestry carbon sink projects (FCCC 2007). The implications of are the objects of judicial challenges: according to the CDM possible changes on the limit for small-scale afforestation regulations administered by the United Nations, small-scale and reforestation CDM project activities were reassessed at carbon sink projects must, at the same time, be cost-effective the Bali Conference in 2007 (Decision 9/CMP.3), which and ecologically sustainable. also decided to limit the maximum amount of CO *Corresponding author. Email: email@example.com ISSN 1745-1590 print/ISSN 1745-1604 online # 2009 Taylor & Francis DOI: 10.1080/17451590902772126 http://www.informaworld.com 2 M. Heiskanen sequestered to 1 kt of CO per year. This new limit ‘will The legal complexity of small-scale carbon sinks is expand the number and geographical reach of the CDM to evaluated to allow discussion of the possibilities of includ- countries that have thus far been unable to take part in the ing the goal of biodiversity more deeply into small-scale mechanism for this category of project activities’ implementation of CDM forestry. Here, the phrase ‘. . .are (UNFCCC 2007). developed or implemented by low-income communities The cost-effectiveness of small-scale projects could be and individuals as determined by the host Party’ in the improved by including the biodiversity values of the project definition of small-scale carbon sinks is important impacts into the amount/price of temporary certified emis- (Decision 19/CP.9). Corbera and Brown (2008) found that, in Mexico, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and sion reductions (tCERs) or long-term certified emission private organizations claim that the CDM has already reductions (lCERs) – as well as the idea of small-scale become so complex that it limits the ability to participate. project implementation, which also has the potential to be Such development is against the legislative quality indicator socio-economically and environmentally beneficial. Could of accessibility, which requires that regulation be clear and including the goal of biodiversity conservation into carbon accessible to the regulatees (Faure and Niessen 2006b). sink regulation much more intensively than at present be a Jenkins et al. (2004) argued that biodiversity markets legal–technical way to increase the cost-effectiveness of are the newest and most challenging of the ecosystem small-scale projects – even after this new doubled limit? service markets. Thorough inclusion of biodiversity as a This should be studied in greater detail, since we may easily goal for the project cycle places new demands on participat- face the traditional counter-arguments and facts against ing institutions – and on the whole regulatory process, since large-scale plantations in the tropics and subtropics if most lawmaking is a political process. Ka¨gi and Langauer (2000) carbon sink projects in the CDM are large-scale. This kind optimistically argued that it would be possible to avoid the of development in CDM forestry is neither politically nor environmental risks of monoculture projects with exotic environmentally wise; in contrast, small-scale carbon sinks species by formulating regulations and guidelines that are could be promoted as local biodiversity-friendly carbon proper in the sense of environmental protection. However, sequestration. Michaelowa’s (2007) argument supports the costs of the regulatory process can be surprisingly high, this idea. Hence, this paper investigates what could be the especially if the biodiversity issues are approached as fully conceptual basis for biodiversity-specialized carbon man- as they could be. Many of the impacts on biodiversity are agement under the current small-scale CDM project frame- difficult to predict. While even the scale of biodiversity work. Biodiversity-specialized carbon management refers impacts is difficult to predict, the fact that the simplified to carbon management that also includes biodiversity modalities and procedures of the small-scale carbon sink aspects in carbon management decisions. projects in the CDM enhance incentives for cursory project This paper also examines how small-scale implementa- implementation suggests that these issues should be studied tion of carbon sink projects is currently regulated from the in greater detail and taken into greater account (Beckman perspective of biodiversity conservation, and reviews the et al. 2006). It is argued here that an active biodiversity current incentives in the regulations to enhance biodiversity management approach, or ‘biodiversity specialized carbon levels in carbon forestry project areas. Additionally, the management’ – and grounds for it in regulation – are paper should serve as a point of orientation for those not needed. Specialized management attempts to generate mul- familiar with recent detailed regulations concerning the tiple values at a landscape level (Boscolo and Vincent small-scale carbon sink projects in the CDM and regulatory 2003). This raises the need for new concepts about biodi- linkages with biodiversity conservation. A general regula- versity management (Boscolo and Vincent 2003): new legal tion theory framework is used to examine the regulations concepts related to biodiversity specialized carbon manage- concerning small-scale carbon sink projects in the CDM ment are recommended in this paper for the legal substance and regulatory linkages with biodiversity conservation in an of small-scale CDM regulation. integrative and multidisciplinary approach. This is done in The existing literature relevant to the topic of this paper the spirit of building bridges by using well-known concepts establishes most of the definitions and typologies for ana- in environmental law, ecology and law-and-economics. lysis. The primary focus of the analysis is on recent research papers in forest ecology, biodiversity economics, climate policy and law-and-economics. They will be used as sec- Conceptual framework and methodological issues ondary data. Moreover, an important framework for analy- No specific regulation theory – for example, the economic sis is adapted from the source of the law itself – i.e. here, the theory of regulation – is used, but rather the general mindset regulations of the Kyoto Protocol. The procedures and of a broad literature on regulation theory is adapted to modalities of the CDM afforestation and reforestation activ- analyse the suitability of the current legal framework for ities have since 1997 been regulated through negotiations in taking into account and providing incentives for implement- the Conferences of Parties (COPs) to the UNFCCC. At the ing small-scale CDM projects that are biodiversity-friendly. time of writing, the decisions for those activities had only As ecologically-oriented valuation has, to date, been the been made for the first commitment period. Consequently, main approach within biodiversity conservation (Mertz the process of legal establishment is still in a dynamic state. et al. 2007), this multidisciplinary approach is innovative. The unique regulatory process of the CDM sink projects International Journal of Biodiversity Science & Management 3 implemented by low-income communities and individuals implemented on a small-scale – which started in early 2004 – as determined by the host Party. If a small-scale afforesta- is systematized in a chronological framework. It must also tion or reforestation project activity under the CDM results be pointed out that publications related to the costs of in net anthropogenic greenhouse gas removals by sinks conservation and their relevance to planning have only greater than 8 kt of CO per year, the excess removals will recently started increasing – and include only sporadic not be eligible for the issuance of tCERs or lCERs.’ reviews accessible to ecologists and conservation biologists (Naidoo et al. 2006). The regulatory update for Decision 19/CP.9 is Decision 6/ CMP.1. It grants eligibility to the following four subtypes of the small-scale afforestation and reforestation project activities: Relevant legal framework converting grassland, cropland, wetland or settlement to forested land. In addition, project participants may submit The ninth COP in Milan in 2003 adopted modalities and new subtypes to the Executive Board for approval. From the procedures regarding the inclusion of carbon sequestration point of view of regulatory history, it should be also noted that activities in the CDM, both for normal-scale project types as the landmark Decision 19/CP.9 has been a continuum of certain determined in Decision 19/CP.9 and small-scale carbon sink decisions of the seventh and eight COPs. Small-scale afforesta- projects. The modalities and procedures for small-scale tion and reforestation projects must comply with all the reg- projects were simplified: given the private sector nature of ulatory requirements mentioned in these decisions, which the CDM, the rationale behind this was the desire to reduce include: Decision 11/CP.7, Decision 15/CP.7, Decision 17/ transaction costs of these projects. The simplified modal- CP.7, Decision 19/CP.7, Decision 20/CP.7, Decision 21/CP.7, ities and procedures include the following: project bund- Decision 22/CP.7, Decision 22/CP.8, and Decision 23/CP.8. ling, simplified project design documents requirements, All the regulations are available publicly. simplified baseline methodologies, simplified monitoring Soft law instruments have provided flexibility for legis- plans, and a common operational entity for validation, lative work because project developers have had a chance to verification and certification (Decision 6/CMP.1). propose their own methodologies. In general, ‘soft law Fragmentation of normal project activity into smaller parts refers to international norms that are deliberately non-binding is not allowed because of a debundling clause (Decision 6/ in character but still have legal relevance’ (Skjaerseth et al. CMP.1). 2006). There have also been calls for public input into Afforestation and reforestation are differentiated on the basis of land history. The former occurs on land that did not proposed new methodologies (Decision 7/CMP.1). These contain forest for at least 50 years, while the latter occurs on soft approaches to law-making indicate sound development land that did not contain forest by the end of 1989. from the point of view of operational flexibility. Operational Heiskanen (2006) and Dutschke (2007) have recommended flexibility is defined as a flexibility of regulatees to choose that afforestation and reforestation projects could be treated the technical, organizational and other solutions for achiev- in the CDM only as one shared conceptual project category ing regulatory objectives (Ma¨a¨tta¨ 2008). Practical legisla- in order to simplify unnecessary dichotomies. According to tive work by the COPs has now continued for almost 4 Article 12 of the Kyoto Protocol, projects to prevent defor- years. The first version of the project design document for estation are ineligible in the CDM, at least in the first small-scale afforestation and reforestation projects was commitment period, 2008–2012. Illegal logging in devel- recently completed (CDM-SSC-AR-PDD 2007). Due to oping countries is often difficult to supervise and control the rapid drafting of laws, legal security has not always (Ravenel et al. 2005). About a fifth of global CO emissions been high. are generated by deforestation (Huston and Marlan 2003; According to this confirmed self-regulation process, in Chomitz et al. 2007); however, the REDD (Reducing February 2007, the COPs serving as the Meeting of the Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation) mechan- Parties to the Kyoto Protocol received submissions concern- ism could complement afforestation and reforestation pro- ing the views of the Parties on the implications of changing jects in the CDM in the future (Blaustein et al. 2007). the limit established for small-scale afforestation and refor- The concept of ‘small-scale carbon sink’ is defined in estation project activities. Many of the parties agreed that the Annex of Decision 19/CP.9, but additional refinements increasing the current 8 kt limit to 32 kt would facilitate better and clarifications are necessary; for example, with regard to utilization of small-scale CDM sink projects in developing low-income communities and individuals (Minang et al. countries, since the current limit means that these projects are 2007). Clarity is important because an established interpre- seen to be barely cost-effective. Germany, on behalf of the tation of the definitions is the goal of small-scale CDM European Union and its Member States, has been far more regulation, and will provide legal certainty. The current conservative in its stance, stating that any review or change to definition of small-scale afforestation and reforestation the limit set in the definition of small-scale afforestation and activities, to be interpreted by the project administration, is: reforestation project activities should be carefully assessed. This perspective also underscores the fact that it is too early to ‘Small-scale afforestation and reforestation project activ- conclude that increasing the maximum carbon sequestration ities under the CDM are those that are expected to result limit will promote the development of small-scale afforesta- in net anthropogenic greenhouse gas removals by sinks of less than 8 kt of CO per year and are developed or tion and reforestation project activities. 2 4 M. Heiskanen Some of the issues related to implementation of the regulatory regimes is not rational from the point of view of small-scale carbon sink projects in developing countries carbon sequestration and biodiversity conservation. For are decided individually by host countries, the developing example, afforestation of areas used by intensive agricul- countries where the small-scale carbon sink projects are tural practices can bring about higher biodiversity implemented. As these countries have the right to determine (Schelhaas et al. 2006). Synergistic possibilities between the requirements for sustainable project implementation, biodiversity conservation and carbon sequestration are not they are allowed to define national sustainable development presently utilized, although these ecosystem services are criteria for small-scale carbon sink projects. Consequently, functionally interdependent due to their ecological interde- the assessment of sustainable development is an issue of pendence. The existing initial integration can already be national sovereignty. The current regulatory framework of seen as suitable development at the project level, because some obstacles facing smallholders will be reduced in car- the CDM is inconsistent because the decisions require bon markets compared with markets for agricultural and defining national sustainable development criteria, but in the current regulatory framework of the CDM it has not traditional forestry commodities. The basic idea of small- been determined how this should be done. Heuberger et al. scale implementation is sound. Consequently, a system of (2007) also underlined the fact that the definition of sustain- financial incentives for taking biodiversity impacts ser- ability is generally still vague. The wide and open-ended iously into account during small-scale carbon sequestration objectives are likely to be subject to varied interpretation activity could be created to improve the existing situation. nationally. Defining sustainable development criteria at Karani and Gantsho (2007) pointed out that, in general, national level is also somewhat questionable because there innovation and entrepreneurship are needed to solve the is no tradition of small-scale forestry in developing coun- complexity of integrating the CDM with sustainable devel- tries (Harrison 2001). Further, as Zhang (2006) pointed out, opment. However, one has to be careful in solving the individual governments have flexibility in choices to define above-mentioned complexity (Tassone et al. 2004). so-called priority eligibility criteria and implement so- The International Finance Corporation of the World called priority projects. There is a danger that the first and Bank has proposed that biodiversity could be marketed in only priority is to choose the mitigation options that seques- a similar fashion to removal of CO from the atmosphere ter most carbon (Zhang 2006). (Cowie et al. 2007). Jenkins et al. (2004) pointed out that the The current dominant practice in forestry in developing nations of the Organization for Economic Co-operation countries is that the various environmental goals are not and Development (OECD) should create initiatives to pursued jointly, but independently (Cowie et al. 2007). It is utilize carbon markets for biodiversity conservation. also evident that the interplay between the biodiversity and Geographically speaking, development finance institutions climate change regimes is not strong (Kim 2004). The can be seen as key players in promoting CDM activities regulatory framework of the CDM in this respect is short- towards achieving Africa’s sustainable development needs sighted and has been unsuccessful from the standpoint of (Karani and Gantsho 2007). Carbon sink projects imple- the legislative quality indicator of legality: law should be mented on a small-scale could be pilot studies for these non-retrospective, ascertainable and clear, according to the purposes, to address the following question: is it possible legality principle. The work of the Ad Hoc Technical Expert to create a workable and plausible conceptual set-up for Group (AHTEG) on Biodiversity and Climate Change of considering additional efforts to conserve and enhance bio- the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD) has been diversity while sequestering carbon – and do so in a way important in this respect (Kim 2004). The distribution of where it is possible to reward those efforts in the CDM the regulatory burden related to designing the criteria for framework? For developing countries, the legal establish- biodiversity conservation is not left entirely to the develop- ment of the CDM can be improved in many ways; but a ing countries. Ellis et al. (2007) have noted that many holistic approach to CDM regulation for integrating biodi- developing countries are not able to risk large investments versity and carbon sink goals at the project level should not in the institutional infrastructure of the CDM. Despite this be left only to the developing countries. problem, the rules for impact assessment and the project National and sub-national policy considerations have approval procedure must be in place at the national and sub- had only a small role in the design of carbon management national levels (Minang et al. 2007). Related to this challen- within the CDM (Minang et al. 2007). For example, not ging situation, Faure and Niessen (2006b) have stressed that enough is known about the extent of the adjustments in foreign legal experts have often underestimated the fragility carbon sink policies that are needed to support of institutional frameworks in developing countries. capacity-building in developing countries. Related to the Consequently, local expertise and knowledge must be above-mentioned challenges, there are already some well- used more thoroughly than in the past. established benchmarks for assessing the success of both CDM and Joint Implementation (JI) projects. Every CDM project should meet benchmarks of additionality, perma- Discussion nence and non-leakage. Parallel key benchmarks for biodi- Kim (2004) has observed that the evolving rules and reg- versity conservation and enhancement could also be ulations of the Kyoto Protocol have been increasingly diver- implemented. In this way, biodiversity-friendly CDM pro- gent from those of the CBD. The differentiation of these jects could be putt together by authorities and project International Journal of Biodiversity Science & Management 5 developers. These parallel legislative cornerstones would could not be transferred outside the project area (‘pernicious facilitate both supervision and enforcement. Biodiversity biodiversity leakage’). Project impacts for ecosystem resi- additionality, biodiversity permanence and biodiversity lience could be taken into account (Iovanna and Newbold leakage could be demonstrated and assessed. 2007). Ecosystem resilience refers to the magnitude of dis- The biodiversity level of degraded land can often be turbance that can be absorbed by an ecosystem before it increased by small-scale afforestation or reforestation. This moves from one stable state to another (Holling 1973). For is possible when an investor implements such a project by example, areas adjacent to protected areas have important means of a well-designed restoration plan. In such cases, the role in promoting ecosystem resilience and ecosystem func- additionality of the biodiversity values (i.e. the enhance- tioning (e.g. Lundberg and Moberg 2003; Wilson and ment level of the biodiversity values at a project site) would Guenau 2004). The starting point would be a baseline somehow be rewarded in the final amount of tCERs/lCERs study report that includes measurements of biodiversity acquired from the project. Ecologically speaking, this addi- (e.g. Weikard et al. 2006). The time scale for monitoring tionality could also be called biodiversity accumulation. biodiversity permanence can be longer than for monitoring Another possibility would be for developing countries to permanence of carbon sequestration (Chazdon 2003). receive payments tied to measured increase in biodiversity Dutschke (2002) has warned about the possibility of before and after a project. The regulatory alternatives to perverse incentives to convert natural ecosystems with rela- sanctioning the factors of the project implementation that tively low-tree cover into high-tree density plantations threaten biodiversity – e.g. loss of biodiversity because of under the CDM framework. So, the new biodiversy con- invasive species used at the project site – are not discussed cepts could be useful for taking into account the biodiversity in this paper. issues to avoid such perverse incentives in carbon Payments for carbon sequestration have been seen as management. However, reformulating the regulation of promising for local people from the local development small-scale carbon sink projects by adding more require- perspective (Pfaff et al. 2007). Operationalizing a reward ments for biodiversity monitoring may raise monitoring system based on new concepts is another question. costs, because aerial methods (remote sensing) are generally However, this reward system could be called a biodiversity used to monitor carbon sequestration, whereas monitoring supplement system (BSS), and could be a new synthesizing biodiversity impacts requires more labour-intensive regulatory goal that is capable of implementation. The BSS ground-truthing methods. Monitoring both ecosystem ser- would be the legislative institution for integrating the new vices would need the application of quantitative approaches biodiversity concepts into the general criteria of the CDM. for project assessment (Heuberger et al. 2007). These issues This requires adopting a not-so-conservative approach in are worth further study. law-making. For example, such biodiversity-friendly CDM The new biodiversity concepts – such as biodiversity credits would require project developers to achieve a mini- additionality – can be also valuable for the national organi- mum standard of permanent biodiversity enhancement zations of the CDM when they offer workable small-scale while implementing a carbon sink project. project ideas to potential investors, as it can be demon- The recommendations regarding the biodiversity- strated that potential biodiversity impacts during the pro- friendly subtypes of small-scale CDM sink projects could posed project have been analysed. Niessen (2006) has be submitted to the Executive Board, as recommended in stressed the view of the Food and Agricultural Appendix B of the Annex of Decision 6/CMP.1. Organization of the United Nations (FAO) that institutional Correspondingly, if the biodiversity level is reduced at a arrangements usually need to be developed at multiple project site (such activity could be called ‘biodiversity non- levels to cope with the specificity of the environmental permanence’) or outside the project site (‘pernicious biodi- issues and provide the correct incentives to the users at versity leakage’), then a separate biodiversity enhancement each level of the hierarchy. Jenkins et al. (2004) stated that project could be implemented to offset the damage caused new institutions have to be created for this purpose. Minang by the carbon sink project. To date, there has been no large- et al. (2007) have also stated that particular attention should scale financing mechanism even for the payments that con- be given to institutional development. centrate solely on biodiversity conservation (Chomitz et al. In each country, one existing CDM institution is the 2007); and there are no incentives to protect or enhance Designated National Authority (DNA), to which informa- biodiversity values during a CDM project. Furthermore, the tion on environmental impacts is submitted. Consequently, spatial variability of costs, which are related to taking bio- the DNA can play a more important and clearer role in diversity aspects into account during project implementa- integrating the biodiversity and carbon sequestration goals tion, can be huge (Naidoo 2006). of a project in order to enhance the multifunctionality of Biodiversity permanence – comparable to the concept CDM forests. This would also be a desirable development of ‘biodiversity maintenance’ used by biologists (e.g. from the point of view of the principle of legality. The Vandermeer 2006) – could be demanded of every small- proactive role of the DNA is important here. Skjaerseth scale afforestation or reforestation project activity under the (2006) pointed out that duplication of work and coordina- CDM from the early stage of a project to its end: the tion problems lead to low effectiveness; this is undesirable biodiversity level cannot be allowed to diminish because of a carbon sequestration project. Equally, negative impacts in terms of administrative efficiency. 6 M. Heiskanen Giving the DNA institution the functions of the biodi- here enhance cooperation between experts in carbon versity supplement system (BSS) could have many new sequestration and biodiversity conservation. At present, pragmatic applications for integrating biodiversity goals the idea of considering biodiversity in a single developing into a small-scale carbon sink project. For example, project country may often be forgotten. Greiner and Michaelowa bundling coordinated by the DNA could be designed to (2003) have criticized the concept of investment addition- create biodiversity-rich ecological corridors while seques- ality because it will exclude those projects that are most tering carbon. The spaces between the borders of the indi- cost-effective; perhaps biodiversity additionality could sub- vidual small-scale project areas could be seen as areas of stitute for investment additionality in the project require- particular importance to biodiversity with regard to biodi- ments because its determination would be more logical. versity leakage, which may be favourable or pernicious (e.g. The official unilateral mode of small-scale CDM does Naughton-Treves et al. 2005; Scales and Marsden 2008). not make biodiversity conservation easier during a project For example, favourable biodiversity leakage happens cycle. The developed countries are likely to purchase car- when functional connectivity increases, causing positive bon credits, no matter how specious they are from the point biodiversity impacts. Functional connectivity emphasizes of view of biodiversity. Related to this, Boyd et al. (2007) process thinking: it refers to the connectivity of a forested pointed out that a current problem for small-scale farming is area for a process, such as the movement of a rare animal the unavailability of technical assistance to small farmers. species through the landscape of small-scale forest patches. Conceptual support would be helpful here because it would Paltto et al. (2006) demonstrated the advantage of the land- strengthen the legal–technical capacity of project develo- scape perspective, especially in the context of fragmented pers and authorities to tackle biodiversity issues. It can be forests. The landscape level of ecosystems is also a natural noted that a major research area in ecology for the past 10 common base where both economic and ecological pro- years has been the role of biodiversity in maintaining the cesses take place (Verboom et al. 2007). Consequently, functioning of ecosystems (Savage et al. 2007), resulting in Hsiaofei et al. (2007) have noted that the principles of much useful knowledge. Moreover, several biodiversity landscape ecology are an interesting theoretical framework aspects are likely to co-prosper with the alleviation of for ecological regulation through the optimization of land- diverse poverty aspects (Franzen and Mulder 2007). scape patterns. Project participants can address biodiversity additional- Landscape management can often enable species migra- ity, biodiversity permanence and biodiversity leakage at the tion (Dutschke 2007). While through implementing small- project design stage, using the structure of existing manage- scale afforestation projects in the tropics, one could, for ment contracts that detail biodiversity management activ- example, concentrate on longer rotations. Schelhaas et al. ities. For instance, the size of a small-scale project area in (2006) pointed out that trees with larger diameters are hectares will depend on carbon sequestration capacity of the exceptionally important for birds and insects. In addition, tree species planted (Kirby and Potvin 2007). Selected tree pest control cannot be used as a business-as-usual activity in species also have an effect on biodiversity (Sarlo 2006). forest management; Klironomos (2002) has argued that the Even scattered trees can be highly significant for biodiver- role of parasite diversity in controlling invasive species is sity, as they can act as nurse plants or fertility islands important. (Manning et al. 2006). Terborgh (1986) argued that the In the first phase of a carbon sink project, the planted structure of the vertebrate community is in danger of col- area could be designed mainly for optimizing carbon lapse if keystone plant species are removed. Consequently, sequestration, while the border areas could be dedicated ‘a tree here and another there’ has a different meaning for more clearly to preserve or enhance biodiversity. biodiversity experts than for experts calculating how much Consequently, these areas would perform a corridor func- absorbed carbon they represent. Evans (1992) noted that a tion, for example, for species migration and gene exchange fast-growing Pinus plantation might lock up 5 t of CO per (i.e. favourable biodiversy leakage). For example, cacao hectare a year, and a eucalypt plantation two or three times (Theobroma cacao) trees have an important corridor func- as much. However, pines and eucalypts are often not ende- tion between forest fragments, if they are managed soundly mic to a project area. Just as earlier afforestations in Western (Franzen and Mulder 2007). Opdam and Wascher (2004) Europe were aimed at production, with the introduction of recommended a shift in strategy from protected areas conifers (Schelhaas et al. 2006), the same inconsiderate towards landscape networks. Project implementation on routine is now transferred to land in developing countries. the small scale also enhances well-balanced geographical Ecological processes are not maintained well when forest distribution of projects (Michaelowa 2007). Thus, it could biodiversity is not conserved effectively (Spanos and Feest be possible to improve the biodiversity values of large-scale 2007). However, there is currently a lack of empirical evi- carbon sink projects by debundling a large-scale project to dence for the statement that biodiversity maintains ecosys- include ecological corridors between fragmented project tem services (Mertz et al. 2007). Indigenous species can be areas. At the moment, the debundling clause in the CDM seen as desirable from the biodiversity point of view. prohibits fragmenting a large project into smaller ones. However, if the capacity of exotic species to sequester Heuberger et al. (2007) stressed that it is important to carbon is greater than that of endemic species – and there discuss the sustainability effects of individual forestry pro- is no system such as the biodiversity supplement system jects on an operational level. The new concepts introduced (BSS) in use – indigenous species are not likely to be used. International Journal of Biodiversity Science & Management 7 Blaustein R, Ettlinger RB, Boucher D, Macey K, Ryan F, Conclusions Schwartzman S. 2007. Reducing emissions from deforestation Conceptualizing biodiversity protection and enhancement is and forest degradation (REDD). Washington, DC: Climate important in the carbon sink context in general, and specifi- Action Network. cally in the context of the legal framework of the CDM. Boscolo M, Vincent JR. 2003. Nonconvexities in the production of timber, biodiversity, and carbon sequestration. J Environ Econ Small-scale sink projects in the CDM require much more Manage. 46:251–268. active biodiversity management in local areas in the host Boyd E, May P, Chang M, Veiga FC. 2007. Exploring socioeco- country than is currently encouraged in the CDM regulations. nomic impacts of forest-based mitigation projects: lessons This paper introduces the concepts of biodiversity addi- from Brazil and Bolivia. Environ Sci Policy. 10(5):419–433. tionality, biodiversity permanence and biodiversity leakage. CDM-SSC-AR-PDD. 2007. Project design document form for small-scale afforestation and reforestation project activities. Biodiversity additionality refers to the enhancement of the Bonn: UNFCCC. biodiversity values at a project site. Using this benchmark Chazdon RL. 2003. Tropical forest recovery: legacies of human means that the difference in the biodiversity level before and impact and natural disturbances. Perspect Plant Ecol Evol after a project must be measured. In addition, the net biodi- Syst. 6(1,2):51–71. versity impacts of an individual project must be taken into Chomitz KM, Buys P, De Luca G, Thomas TS, Wertz- Kanounnikoff S. 2007. Overview at loggerheads? agricultural account as valid outcomes of the individual project. expansion, poverty reduction, and environment in the tropical Biodiversity leakage may be favourable or pernicious. forests. Washington, DC: The World Bank. At a minimum, biodiversity non-leakage as a biodiversity- Corbera E, Brown K. 2008. Building institutions to trade ecosys- neutral project outcome is the desired baseline situation if it tem services: marketing forest carbon in Mexico. World Dev. can be determined at a project design stage that a project 36(10):1956–1976. Cowie A, Schneider UA, Montanarella L. 2007. Potential syner- cannot lead to positive biodiversity outcomes outside a gies between existing multilateral environmental agreements project area. Pernicious biodiversity leakage should not be in the implementation of land use, land-use change and for- allowed to occur. Biodiversity permanence is mainly a estry activities. Environ Sci Policy. 10(4):335–352. temporal concept, as safeguarding biodiversity should be Decision 2/CP.13. Reducing emissions from deforestation in permanent or at least long term. If the biodiversity level developing countries: approaches to stimulate action. Decision 5/CMP.1. Modalities and procedures for afforestation and is reduced during the project period, biodiversity reforestation project activities under the clean development non-permanence occurs. In brief, these concepts strengthen mechanism in the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol. the capacity of project developers and authorities to tackle Decision 6/CMP.1. Simplified modalities and procedures for biodiversity issues. small-scale afforestation and reforestation project activities The new concepts will structure and better emphasize – under the clean development mechanism in the first commit- ment period of the Kyoto Protocol and measures to facilitate as the terms already in use do in their own context – the their implementation. importance of biodiversity as a goal of an individual small- Decision 7/CMP.1. Further guidance relating to the clean develop- scale project. It is also important to remember that each ment mechanisms. developing country is entitled to define ecological sustain- Decision 9/CMP.3. Implications of possible changes to the limit ability nationally; yet this is likely to be an impediment to for small-scale afforestation and reforestation clean develop- ment mechanism project activities. the biodiversity-friendly implementation of small-scale car- Decision 11/CP.7. Land use, Land use change and forestry. bon sink projects. By creating the above-mentioned con- Decision 15/CP.7. Modalities and procedures for afforestation and cepts and the legislative–institutional framework, the reforestation project activities under the clean development biodiversity impacts would be internalized within the deci- mechanism in the first commitment period of the Kyoto sion-making process of the project cycle, and regarded as Protocol. Decision 17/CP.7. Modalities and procedures for a clean develop- direct impacts of the project. In the absence of such biodi- ment, as defined in Article 12 of the Kyoto Protocol. versity-friendly modification of the CDM regulation, the Decision 19/CP.7. Modalities and procedures for a clean develop- project implementation will be guided by economic con- ment mechanism, as defined in Article 12 of the Kyoto siderations related only to optimizing carbon sequestration. Protocol. These new concepts and the biodiversity supplement Decision 19/CP.9. Modalities and procedures for afforestation and reforestation project activities under the clean development system could also be useful in stimulating action for reducing mechanism in the first commitment period of the Kyoto emissions from deforestation in developing countries. At the Protocol. moment, such approaches are being sought in the Decision 20/CP.7. Modalities and procedures for afforestation and Conferences of the Parties (Decision 2/CP.13). 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International Journal of Biodiversity Science & Management – Taylor & Francis
Published: Apr 24, 2009
Keywords: biodiversity supplement system (BSS); biodiversity specialized carbon management; biodiversity additionality; biodiversity permanence; biodiversity leakage
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