Capacity building for REDD+ readiness (2013 onwards)

Forests in the GMS are important carbon sinks, provide valuable eco-system services, contain extensive and unique biodiversity, and are an important source of livelihood for millions of local people, many of whom live in poverty. The on-going destruction and damage to natural forests in the GMS through over-exploitation has long been one of the major environmental challenges facing the subregion. In response, GMS countries are engaging in REDD+ (“Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation”).

REDD+ is a global initiative that aims to create financial incentives for sustainable forest management. Its aim of harnessing carbon finance for sustainable forest management is a new field of experience and will require the active participation of government and local stakeholders.

Lao PDR and Viet Nam are two GMS countries progressing well with REDD+ readiness and are taking advantage of interim performance-based payment systems (including the Forest Investment Program in Lao PDR and the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility in Viet Nam. It is important to ensure that stakeholders at the provincial, district and community level are also ready to participate in emerging REDD+ opportunities as ultimately this is where interventions to improve forest management will be implemented.

Since 2006, the Core Environment Program (CEP) has built the capacity of district and provincial government staff, as well as communities, to improve forest management in key GMS biodiversity landscapes. Building on these efforts, CEP is introducing the concept of REDD+ at the local level and testing participatory forest and carbon monitoring methods to support the harnessing of future REDD+ benefits.

This project aims to improve the design and implementation of REDD+ at the local level through capacity building targeting local level REDD+ stakeholders in Attapeu province, Lao PDR and Thua Thien Hue, Quang Nam and Quang Tri provinces, Viet Nam. The main activities include:

  • Building local capacity for Participatory Forest Monitoring (PFM)
  • Integrating climate resilient and low carbon considerations into local development plans
  • Identifying and testing pro-poor benefit distribution systems
  • Raising awareness of REDD+ concepts through technical trainings for government stakeholders


Publish Date: 12th September 2013

Last Updated: 3rd June 2016

See also

Consultation Workshop on GMS Climate Change and Environment Sustainability Program (CCESP)

1 to 2 April 2019

Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Climate Change and Environment Sustainability Program (CCESP): The proposed knowledge and support technical assistance (TA) on CCESP will build on the key achievements of two phases of the Core Environment Program and support the implementation of the GMS Core Environment Program Strategic Framework and Action Plan 2018-2022, which was endorsed at the Fifth GMS Environment Ministers’ Meeting held in 2018. The CCESP will focus on creating enabling conditions to leverage additional investment in priority areas such as (i) green technologies and sustainable infrastructure; (ii) natural resources and ecosystem services; and (iii) green growth, climate resilience and disaster risk management.

More details

GMS Working Group on Environment 24th Annual Meeting

1st April 2019

The 24th Annual Meeting of the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Working Group (WG) on Environment reviewed the achievements of the GMS Core Environment Program Phase II and discussed the way forward. WGE AM-24 was hosted by the People’s Republic of China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) with support from ADB through the GMS Environment Operations Center.


The WGE AM-24 was followed by thematic discussions that covered the proposed new programs entitled: "GMS Climate Change and Environmental Sustainability Program (CCESP)" and "GMS Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security Program (SAFSP)" which are aligned with three out of seven operational priorities of Strategy 2030 approved by the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Board in 2018.


The CCESP will focus on ADB Strategy 2030’s operational priority: tackling climate change, building climate and disaster resilience, and enhancing environmental sustainability, while SAFSP will focus on ADB Strategy 2030’s operational priority: promoting rural development and food security. Both programs will support ADB Strategy 2030’s operational priority: fostering regional cooperation and integration.


More details
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