Plan Vivo Newsletter - Oct. 2014
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Welcome to another edition of the Plan Vivo Newsletter. The Foundation is on the brink of some exciting developments and we welcome you to get involved!

As Plan Vivo approaches the end of its second decade promoting community-based land use and forestry projects, our philosophy of sustainable land use and resource management has not wavered. PV-certified projects have issued PV Certificates for almost 2 million tCO2e in this time, with half of that in the last three years. We continue to support sound projects led by dedicated local and international experts that improve the livelihoods of those who depend on these resources, by blending indigenous knowledge with broader technical input. Crucially, these efforts are shaped and governed by local communities, driving long-term sustainability.

Recent weeks have seen a flurry of relevant news and activity for our network. The UN Climate Change Summit gave some encouraging signs in our fight to tackle climate change, as we approach the 2015 COP 21 in Paris. Furthermore, the outlook for fossil fuel industries seems ever more shaky, as major actors hint at a growing consensus on the need to realign key financing streams away from traditional ties. The Rockefeller Brothers Fund, notable for being founders of Standard Oil, announced it was removing funds from fossil fuels, adding weight to a separate divestment campaign aiming to withdraw $50 billion in 5 years. 

Forests and land use are increasingly being thrust into centre of the international debate – recognised as having a key role to play in efforts to curb climate change. Reducing the degradation of these ecosystems doesn't simply benefit the climate, but comes hand in hand with improving the livelihoods of rural communities and smallholder farmers, as well as the sustainable management of primary and secondary forests, including some of the world's biodiversity hotspots. These resources – home to many forest-dwelling and forest-dependant communities – are at the nexus of territorial disputes over natural resource use and control, political and commercial interests. We need to ensure these interests are not favoured at the expense of local people, who often lack sufficiently powerful local institutions or a common voice.

Positive news did come out recently in the shape of the New York Declaration on Deforestation, endorsed by Indonesia and the DRC, along with a variety of businesses, NGOs, and even the United States. Ban Ki-Moon, UN Secretary General, said: "... the actions agreed today will reduce poverty, enhance food security, improve the rule of law, secure the rights of indigenous peoples and benefit communities around the world."

Looking at these developments optimistically, this may signify that the protection of forests has moved up the list of priorities for major companies, governments and corporates; though not everyone is totally convinced. It is clear that thanks to efforts by a broad range of civil society actors and additional consumer pressure, companies such as Golden Agri-Resources, Nestle, Cargill, Wilmar and Unilever have committed to deforestation-free supply chains by 2020. An ever greater number of companies are mainstreaming sustainability efforts and greening their supply chains. Nevertheless, as to whether the world's leaders are really taking sufficient measures to create a cleaner, more sustainable future, only time will tell. What's clear is that we must continue to act now, in whatever ways we can, by analysing our own consumption of goods, services and energy, by educating others about how to reduce, mitigate and adapt, and by supporting great projects. You are what makes the difference! 
For further reading on agricultural commodity supply chains, do check out this excellent report from CLUA

In this latest edition of our newsletter we welcome you to take a look at the latest crop of projects and some developments in store for the future. We are currently engaged in various efforts to strengthen the Plan Vivo brand and hope to be able to share some news about the launch of our new website shortly after Christmas.
Ngoyla Province, Cameroon
An interesting addition to the PV network comes in the form of a WWF Cameroon project (currently developing the PDD and tech specs), which aims to promote sustainable forest management in the Ngoyla-Mintom forest. It aims to do this by boosting carbon stocks and biodiversity through the protection of forest cover, sustainable harvesting of NTFPs, agroforestry and assisted natural regeneration. These activities will help improve the livelihoods of communities through new income generating activities, benefitting from staged PES payments and key technical support such as to be able to effectively monitor forest cover. The project wants to capitalize on the lessons learned for the national REDD+ strategy in Cameroon. Further information can be accessed here (in French)
Upcoming Events
Plan Vivo is currently developing a set of scoping tools for companies looking at insetting within their supply chains. With financial support from the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, these tools will be distilled into a manual for UK and international businesses, and a will be a first such approach by an international certification standard, allowing for the development and certification of insetting activities. A one-day capacity building event will be held in London on November 10th, in collaboration with IIED and various other partners, to present the manual and facilitate discussion around early experiences, challenges and opportunities. If you would like to attend this event, please see the concept note here and feel free to contact us at:
On the road to registration
With validation underway, the Arlomom Patako project could be the next to join the Plan Vivo Network. Initiated in 2010 as an innovative component of the UNDESERT program, this project from the Saloum region in West Central Senegal aims to develop sustainable agricultural land management practices alongside reforestation and agroforestry activities using native tree species. Working especially with women's groups (see video), who traditionally rarely own land in Senegal, the project looks to support livelihoods activities, building on existing community structures and savings and loans initiatives. 
REDD Guidance Document
We're proud to be offering for consultation our first guidance document for Reducing Locally-Driven Deforestation. Originally conceived to support Indonesian community forestry projects, this set of approved approaches and structured guidance will allow projects looking at reducing locally-driven deforestation to better understand what is eligible under the Standard (updated in Dec. 2013). These guidelines can be applied to natural tropical or sub-tropical areas where deforestation is mainly caused by local activities, such as unsustainable forest product harvesting or agriculture land-use changes. This document will assist project developers in preparing carbon stock estimates and changes in GHG emissions resulting from locally-driven deforestation. Full details can be found on the website here.
Just in....
Take a look at the latest news from Carbon Tanzania here. Meanwhile, the CommuniTree Carbon in Nicaragua have just announced 300,000 new trees planted in 2014, taking the project past an important milestone - a million trees planted since 2010. Congratulations!

Over in Chiapas, Mexico, Scolel 'te project staff are reaching new audiences (TV interview in Spanish) and continue to shore up project support, with the I
UCN recently offsetting its footprint from its Swiss headquarters.
Annual Reports
Projects that have completed their annual reporting since our last update include Scolel' te (Mexico); Trees of Hope (Malawi), and are soon to be followed by the Emiti Nibwo and Yaeda Valley projects in Tanzania. See project pages for details here
New Additions
We have received and approved various PINs over the last few months, including WARSI's Bujang Raba project (see PIN) involving 5 forest-dependent communities in Jambi province, Indonesia, and another from the African Wildlife Foundation in Kolo Hills, Tanzania (on PV website shortly)

Several projects from Indonesia are currently in the pipeline, from organisations such as SCF and SSS Pundi. We hope to be able to update you on their progress in the coming months.
Source Climate C. Coffee
The brand Source Climate Change Coffee is growing:
"For every bag you buy, local farmers plant trees to support the forest and their families."

This new coffee brand is a great example of a product that is integrating sustainable supply chain management practices to produce a carbon-balanced agricultural commodity. 
New collaborations in Uganda and Tanzania will expand the product range to provide support for a greater number of communities involved in Plan Vivo-certified projects. To find out more about Source Climate Change Coffee, please click here
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