The private sector alliance (KEPSA) collaborated with the Ministry of Environment and Forestry and UNDP in the organisation of the REDD+ strategy consultation forum that took place at Nyali Sun Africa Beach Resort, Mombasa, on Tuesday, October 19, 2021. The regional consultation forums were organised for the dissemination of the Kenya Readiness Strategy on Reducing Emissions from Forest Degradation and Deforestation (REDD+) as well as adding the private sector voice to the Forest Investment Plan for reduction of emissions through REDD+ initiatives in Kenya.
As a developing country aiming to benefit from the REDD+ programme through forest conservation, Kenya submitted a Forest Reference Level to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 2020 based on data and methods developed in the ongoing National Forest Monitoring System. This strategy has been built on existing REDD+ documents providing a framework of scaling up REDD+ mechanism for a results-based payment programme in conservation and forest-based actions. It lays a foundation for a Forest Investment Plan (FIP) for the country.
The KEPSA Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Martha Cheruto, in her opening remarks, expounded on the alignment of the REDD+ initiative with KEPSA’s strategic pillar of sustainability and public private dialogues on sustainable use of the environment, water and natural resources. The private sector is key in supporting the Government of Kenya on green growth, circular economy, sustainability and forest conservation while ensuring that economic development is in line with people, planet and prosperity tenets.
Ms. Evelyne Koech, the UNDP team leader on Environment and Resilience, said that UNDP is supporting Kenya through the Ministry of Environment and Forestry to comply with International Standards on Forestry in Kenya.
Mr. Patrick Twala, the UNPD Safeguard Specialist, provided an overview of the REDD+ as an opportunity for the private sector, especially the small and micro-enterprises to benefit from sustainable business practices. REDD+ is a large-scale payment for ecosystem services aimed at reducing the emission from forest degradation and deforestation while enhancing carbon stocks. It is in line with Kenya’s constitutional requirement for the attainment of 10% tree cover.
Mr. Twala further elaborated on the consultations that have informed the development of the REDD+ strategy in Kenya including input from Forest Society of Kenya, the Private Sector Regional Forums in Kisumu and Eldoret. From Mombasa, the engagement will take place in Nyeri and Nairobi.
The forum was attended by private sector members from Environment Institute of Kenya (EIK), Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM), Kilifi Plantations, Green by Choice, Agribusiness’ Academy, Kentaste, UNDP Team, county governments and the KEPSA Team.