Copenhagen, SBSTA Pleanry Session, December 12–Madame Chair, thank you for this opportunity. I speak on behalf of WEDO.

REDD  provides potential opportunities for positive outcomes for forest dependent communities, but also risks serious negative outcomes, especially for women who rely on forest resources to sustain their families’ livelihoods. Current discussions on REDD are very weak with respect to the gender dimensions and to its impacts on women who have few or no options to use the forest  for sources of fuelwood, livestock feed, medicines, and even food in times of scarcity. It is crucial that this gap be addressed so that the policies, financing mechanisms and consultative processes take full account of the differentiated rights, roles and responsibilities of women and men.

Standards, guidelines, indicators and targets must assure women’s equal access to and control over REDD benefits. REDD projects must comply with international agreements such as the other environmental conventions, CEDAW, and the MDGs.

Women’s networks and groups engaged in forest and natural resource management should be invited into the REDD consultations at every level. Capacity building opportunities must be made available to women to enable their effective participation and full engagement.

Thank you.

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