Forest peoples claim customary rights to - and are effective guardians of - over more than half of the world’s forests. But they are reckoned to have legal ownership of only around 15 per cent of them. Now, the danger is that the growth of carbon-offsetting markets and other initiatives aimed at incentivising forest restoration as a nature-based solution (NbS) to climate change, will become an increasing threat to the rights of forest communities - to their land, their forests, the carbon within them – and ultimately to the viability of NbS as a climate strategy.
In this new briefing, award-winning writer and Fern Board member Fred Pearce reveals that restoring the world’s forests will require the restoration of the rights of forest dwellers – the people who live in them, know them best and have most reason to defend and nurture them. For NbS to the climate crisis to be effective, rights-based restoration has to be front and centre.
With case studies of rights-based restoration from Guatemala, Indonesia, Kenya, Nepal and the US, Fred Pearce shows what can be achieved if we protect forest communities’ rights and give space to nature.
Don’t want to read the whole briefing? See our visual scrolling story, called ‘The Rights Path’.