Climate politics and finance: Funds and forests - DFID on Green Climate Fund, Credit Suise Invt Bank view

10 July 2016: Financiers, funds and forests - DFID on Green Climate Fund, Credit Suise Invt Bank view 

CIFOR’s Peter Holmgren on investing in landscapes - First installment in a series of interviews from the 2016 Global Landscapes Forum - The Investment Case 16 Jun 2016

2016 Global Landscapes Forum: Connecting funds to farms and forests (Part 2) - Attendees of this year's Global Landscapes Forum in London discuss concrete solutions to boost private sector investment in landscapes- from greening supply chains to leveraging fintech and GPS software. LEONA LIU 13 Jun 2016

Balancing Transparency and Non-State Actors in the Climate Negotiations by STEPHEN LEONARD  14 Jun 2016

DFID’s Andrea Ledward on the Green Climate Fund - Third installment in a series of interviews from the 2016 Global Landscapes Forum - The Investment Case CENTER FOR INTERNATIONAL FORESTRY RESEARCH  23 Jun 2016

A Q&A with Mark Burrows, Managing Director and Vice Chairman of Global Investment Banking at Credit Suisse - Well, as I’ve said several times, the future is sustainable development, and is landscapes. And frankly, that’s going to be a 5 to 7 trillion-dollar investment space within 10 to 15 years. Every bank, every institutional investor, is now turning its attention to this space.

Watch: Highlights video from the 2016 Global Landscapes Forum- The Investment Case - Private sector investment in landscapes is no passing fad- it’s here to stay. That was the driving consensus among the 300+ participants at this year's Forum.  LEONA LIU 10 Jun 2016

Civil society organisations: Let’s brainstorm sustainibility in Indonesia by Maria Andreasdottir • June 5, 2016 -- The Norwegian Climate and Forest Initiative (NICFI) organises seminars to gather civil society organisations in prioritised rainforest countries.... On the occasion of the conference in Jakarta, CIFOR and The Norwegian Embassy in Jakarta made a video about Indonesia’s work on reducing deforestation and the civil society’s crucial role in promoting this. (You can watch the video on

10 reasons to be optimistic for forests 5 June 2016 / Commentary by Rhett A Butler  The post is a commentary. The views expressed are those of the author alone.

Land tenure and livelihoods: What’s the connection? New study finds that securing land rights doesn't always guarantee better livelihoods for communities in Peru, Indonesia and Uganda.  by Barbara Fraser  16 May 2016

Analysis - Glaring gap: Countries are overlooking how the private sector can help meet national climate goals - As the Bonn Conference gets underway this week (May 16-26), here's a review of seven Asian countries’ plans to finance climate mitigation through land use.  Steven Lawry  17 May 2016

Measuring national REDD+ performance for the promise of results-based finance 18 May 2016, Bonn, Germany

Who is really bearing the cost of REDD+? The answer may surprise you - A forthcoming study brings a reality check on who is footing the bill for REDD+  MICHELLE KOVACEVIC  11 May 2016

What will it take to make sustainable palm oil the norm? New study examines the factors driving commitments to responsible production of a controversial global commodity.  JACK HEWSON  10 May 2016

Paris Agreement signed. Now what? - Here’s what to consider as the global climate agreement set in motion at the COP21 in Paris moves towards implementation. by STEPHEN LEONARD  23 Apr 2016

22 December 2015: The Economist - The Paris agreement will not stabilise the climate; but the efforts it makes possible could still achieve a lot

Climate change - Hopelessness and determination. The Paris agreement will not stabilise the climate; but the efforts it makes possible could still achieve a lot
...For someone to propose means that fall so far short of their purported ends might seem like cynicism or stupidity. Sure enough, some of the keenest devotees to action on climate change have accused the Paris negotiators of both. In fact, the deal really did demonstrate collective intelligence.... The nations of the world know that they cannot suddenly force each other to stop emitting greenhouse gases, because fossil fuels are fundamental to the way that economies work. But many countries also want to reduce the risks posed by climate change and know that they need to find ways to work together. The Paris agreement offers a range of mechanisms to make this happen (see page 94)....Countries now have a framework to ensure that each is doing what it said it would; they have pledged more money to help the poorest and most vulnerable countries adapt to the effects of climate change; they have a task force for looking at the issues raised by those who cannot adapt and need to find new places to live; and they have the basis for new carbon-pricing deals. They have also agreed that big developing countries, which were largely spared by earlier deals, should consider making a greater contribution.

14 December 2015: COP21 deal and key links; headlines of "end of fossil fuel era" but naysayers call it "fraud" and undermined. The US political system is not on board?

COP21: Paris climate deal is 'best chance to save planet' 13 December 2015

Paris climate deal: nearly 200 nations sign in end of fossil fuel era - Two decades of talks have come to this: an ambitious agreement to hold states to emissions targets – but already low-lying countries are worried

Obama's fragile climate legacy - More than his other achievements, the international climate agreement relies on the good will of Congress and the next president to keep it in place.  By Sarah Wheaton 12/13/15.... "The President is making promises he can’t keep, writing checks he can’t cash, and stepping over the middle class to take credit for an ‘agreement’ that is subject to being shredded in 13 months," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement.... Key parts of the Paris pact are nonbinding, the only way Obama could avoid seeking approval of the deal in Congress, something he knew would be impossible. He learned that lesson in his first term, when cap-and-trade legislation failed on Capitol Hill, prompting the Environmental Protection Agency to develop its own set of greenhouse gas rules. Those regulations are now at the mercy of the courts, which will decide over the coming years whether the president overstepped his authority as president....
It’s a reminder that even as consensus grows among scientists and world leaders about climate change and what must be done to limit its consequences, the U.S. political system is not on board. Read more:

James Hansen, father of climate change awareness, calls Paris talks 'a fraud' - The former Nasa scientist criticizes the talks, intended to reach a new global deal on cutting carbon emissions beyond 2020, as ‘no action, just promises’ 12 Dec 2015

Grand promises of Paris climate deal undermined by squalid retrenchments by George Monbiot

12 December 2015: US Presidential candidate viewpoints, Leaders’ Statement on action for forests at COP21, but financing is not there says Nigeria economist

Climate Change According to U.S. Presidential Candidates   12/4/2015 Where do U.S. presidential candidates stand on climate change and how to address it? A cheat sheet of the frontrunners' positions and plans

CIFOR DG’s Column - Climate isn’t everything … so welcome to the Global Landscapes Forum - Many solutions for a sustainable future are tied to landscapes and must meet local needs, while building on global talks....Landscapes, therefore, are places where many of our solutions for a more sustainable future must happen... The recent fire and haze crisis in Indonesia demonstrates why we need to take a broader landscape approach and a longer-term perspective. The mainstream media tend to characterize the fires as primarily issues of greenhouse gas emissions and nature conservation. While these are indeed critical, the fires really go way beyond. Health, poverty, food, rights, land tenure, law and order, and economic growth are all issues that come into play. Framing the haze crisis mainly around climate concerns is simply not accurate, especially for those closest to the scene that depend on these landscapes...

CIFOR welcomes Leaders’ Statement on action for forests at COP21 2 Dec 2015

Landscapes for sustainability: Potential, yes. Finance, not so much. New areas of investment are needed to bring the private sector on board, speakers say at Global Landscapes Forum.  by Thomas Hubert @tom_hubert 6 Dec 2015; ....speakers at the 2015 Global Landscapes Forum in Paris warned today, achieving such sustainable land-use management will require massive amounts of investment. And those amounts are not yet there, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Nigerian economist and former Minister of Finance, pointed out in the opening session of the event. The Forum, organized by CIFOR and a consortium of partners, brought together more than 3000 people to explore the role of land use in reaching climate and development goals. Okonjo-Iweala welcomed the fact that most African countries had included land-use interventions in their intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs) as part of ongoing climate negotiations, especially given FAO estimates that one-third of agricultural landscapes are degraded—mostly in developing countries.... She then went on to quote a new paper by the New Climate Economy Project showing that $250 billion is needed each year to fund landscape conservation and restoration, activities she described as “essential to achieving a vital triple win for development and climate: increasing rural productivity, resilience and mitigation simultaneously”.

3 December 2015: By the numbers - India report says OECD exaggerates aid, Oxfam says it is myth that citizens in rapidly developing countires are most to blame - look at the world's richest 10%; Indonesia and Malaysia pledges

By the numbers

Paris climate talks: Indian officials accuse OECD of exaggerating climate aid by John Vidal 2 December 2015; ... Officials suggested that the true amount figure mobilised by rich countries may only be $2.2bn, not $57bn. “This is far from the $100bn a year goal,” the Indian paper said, which included a disclaimer that “the views and analysis contained in this discussion paper do not necessarily reflect the views of the government of India”.

World's richest 10% produce half of global carbon emissions, says Oxfam by AFP  2 December 2015 - an average person among the richest 1% of people emits 175 times more carbon than his or her counterpart among the bottom 1%, Oxfam said. .... Oxfam said its analysis “helps dispel the myth that citizens in rapidly developing countries are somehow most to blame for climate change.” ...

Indonesia and Malaysia pledges

April Group Invests US$100 Million for Peat Restoration 2 Desember 2015, Aside from doubling the land restoration up to 150,000 hectares, the company operating in Riau will invest money at around US$100 million to around Rp1.36 trillion for the restoration program within 10 years. The investment value is the largest that a private company has invested in the single eco-restoration in Indonesia. Investment of April covers the studies, restorations and coverage, along with management and partnership.

Malaysia pledges 45% reduction in greenhouse gases by 2030, 2 December 2015; ... Six years ago in Copenhagen it set a target of cutting emissions by as much as 40% by 2020 compared with 2005 levels. The government said it had achieved a 33% reduction as of end-2013...

1 December 2015: High politics, projects & campaigns, corporate news links

High politics of the Paris talks

Two Big Fights in Paris Climate Talks   11/30/2015 6:00AM       President Obama faces two major battles as delegates meet in Paris this week to tackle climate change -- one with developing nations, and the other with Republicans in Congress. WSJ's Jerry Seib explains.

Paris climate summit: world leaders told to iron out differences before talks end - France steps up diplomatic efforts to get consensus on a global deal six days before official talks conclude by Fiona Harvey and Kim Willsher in Paris 28 November 2015

Christiana Figueres: the woman tasked with saving the world from global warming - The UN climate chief is confident that the Paris summit can make history and produce a landmark deal to limit future carbon emissions – but any success depends on her pivotal role, UN climate chief, Christiana Figueres: ‘We are going to get an agreement [in Paris], because there is enough political will.’ by Fiona Harvey 27 November 2015

Fewer than 50% of CEOs say Paris deal would make them act on climate change - New poll reveals most business leaders are failing to get to grips with long-term implications of global warming by Oliver Balch 4 September 2015

Paris climate talks: powerful business lobbies seek to undermine deal - Tackling climate change means drastically transforming our economies. Our political leaders, not business, are best placed to do that by Pascoe Sabido is a campaigner and researcher with Corporate Europe Observatory 27 November 2015; ...A recent report from the NGO Corporate Europe Observatory reveals that what’s on offer at COP21 is nothing short of a climate catastrophe, a guaranteed recipe to cook the planet. But rather than sending the dish back, political leaders have asked for seconds, bringing the very companies responsible for the problem ever closer into the UN fold.....  The problem, however, is that is has also succeeded in creating several platforms to ensure business-friendly proposals are at the heart of climate policy-making, rather than vice versa. New markets, experimental technologies, all endorsed so polluters don’t have to change their business models. The UN’s climate chief, Christiana Figueres – who before taking up her post was principal climate change advisor to Latin America’s leading energy utility, Endesa – has even told the world to “stop demonising oil and gas companies”.... If enough people get behind it, Paris could mark a watershed moment: the beginning of the end for the cosy affair between politicians and polluters...

Projects and campaigns

Prince Charles in plan to help investors take polluting firms to court - Commonwealth Climate and Law Initiative will lay out risks to financial returns amid increasing government curbs on emissions by Daniel Boffey Policy editor 27 November 2015; Prince Charles is taking part in a project to expose major polluting corporations based in Commonwealth nations to big-money legal action if they fail to accurately disclose their impact on climate change or reform their ways...

Bill Gates to launch clean energy project on sidelines of Paris climate talks - Microsoft co-founder will announce multi-billion-dollar Initiative Cleantech on opening day of two-week climate summit alongside Barack Obama - Gates will join Indian prime minister Narendra Modi, US president Barack Obama and French president François Hollande to announce Initiative Cleantech. Photograph: Jean-Pierre Clatot/AFP/Getty Images  Reuters in Washington 27 November 2015; ...Gates has pledged $2bn of his personal wealth over the next five years to “bend the curve” on climate change, he said this summer.In a blogpost in July, Gates said more breakthrough technologies are needed to combat climate change and that current technologies can only reduce greenhouse gas emissions at a “beyond astronomical” cost. He said accelerating government funding for clean energy research and development is crucial to attracting private investment to the field..

World Bank Group unveils $16 Billion Africa Climate Business Plan to Tackle Urgent Climate Challenges  November 24, 2015; One third of funds expected to come from Bank’s fund for the poorest countries

Corporate news

Unilever to stop using coal for energy within five years  - Consumer goods giant pledges to go ‘carbon positive’ by 2030, generating 100% of its energy needs from renewables with more to spare - Paul Polman, chairman of Unilever, will be attending Paris climate talks with other business leaders. by Fiona Harvey, environment correspondent 27 November 2015  Unilever, the consumer goods giant, has pledged to eliminate coal from its energy usage within five years, and derive all of its energy worldwide solely from renewable sources by 2030. The company will become “carbon positive” by 2030...

TTIP talks: EU alleged to have given ExxonMobil access to confidential strategies - Documents and emails obtained by the Guardian reveal ‘collusion’ between Brussels and industry over the fossil fuel push in free trade negotiations by Arthur Neslen Brussels 26 November 2015; .... The US has banned fossil fuel exports for 40 years but the policy was relaxed towards Mexico in August. Previous leaks of TTIP documents have revealed the EU is pressing for a guarantee in the trade deal that the US will allow free export of oil and gas to Europe, alarming environmentalists who fear imports would impact on the EU’s climate change plans.
It would cost $100bn to build the infrastructure necessary to export the US fossil fuels, according to industry estimates, also released in the freedom of information trawl.

Two-faced Exxon: the misinformation campaign against its own scientists - 100% global warming consensus in Exxon scientists’ research contrasted its $31m campaign to cast doubt on that consensus by Dana Nuccitelli 25 November 2015; ...Investigative journalism by Inside Climate News (ICN) into Exxon’s internal documents revealed that the company was at the forefront of climate research, warning of the dangers posed by human-caused global warming from the late-1970s to the late-1980s. As Harvard climate historian Naomi Oreskes noted...