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SCOPING STUDY OF FOREST CARBON PROJECT POTENTIAL IN UGANDA
Kampala, Uganda
May 13 - 15, 2009

From May 13 - 15, the Katoomba Group hosted the second meeting in a series of scoping workshops for an analysis of the legal, policy and institutional frameworks that impact the development of forest carbon (including REDD) projects. This meeting drew upon the criteria and methodologies developed in the Tanzania workshop held in early March. Over the course of the workshop, eleven participants met to outline an analysis of current constraints, opportunities, and needs related to project development in Uganda. Participants represented a diversity of sectors including government agencies, academics, lawyers, and local and international NGOs. As in Tanzania, the main output of this scoping exercise will be a report to be presented to key REDD stakeholders. The study will eventually inform a tool that Katoomba Group will develop to facilitate linkages between REDD projects and national strategies.

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Carbon finance, and especially REDD, provides a unique opportunity for countries like Uganda, in that it provides a market-based economic incentive for forest conservation and management. But the question is, what needs to be in place in order for carbon projects to achieve their intended objective for Uganda?

The East and Southern Africa Katoomba Ecosystem Services Incubator (or the Incubator), which was launched in Uganda in September 2008, seeks to act as an ‘honest broker’ between forest-dependent communities and the PES marketplace. Following a careful selection process, the Incubator can provide technical, financial and legal support to help communities access carbon and other PES markets. The Incubator has initiated a scoping study of policy, legal and institutional frameworks as preparation to identify potential promising projects for REDD.

Objectives and Outputs

The scoping study is aimed at:

  • Developing a set of generic forest carbon project situations, especially REDD ones
  • Identifying for each domain, the main legal, institutional and policy constraints (or opportunities) to project development and marketing (of carbon credits)
  • Helping the government of Uganda develop a balanced portfolio of REDD projects that responds to national priorities

This analysis, similar to the one just concluded in Tanzania, will (a) help draw up a portfolio of promising REDD (or other PES) projects, and (b) generate recommendations in terms of the legal, policy and institutional actions or reforms necessary to stimulate forest carbon finance in Uganda.

A major output will be a cost-effective methodology/toolbox for project screening, prior to a full (and normally costly) feasibility analysis. It is expected to be valuable for governments in the region and various national and international NGOs.

Government and Donors:

1. Solveig Verheyleweghen. Norwegian Embassy

2. Christina Hespeter, Norwegian Embassy

3. Sudi Bamulesewa, USAID

4. Martin Fodor, Senior Environment Specialist, World Bank

5. Abu Bakr Wandera, GEF Small Grants Project, Uganda

6. Elungat O. David, National Forestry Authority

7. Aryamanya Mugisha, Executive Director, National Environment Management Authority, Uganda

Core Group:

1. Byamukama Biryahwaho, Executive Director, Nature Harness Initiatives

2. John Ssendawula, Sustainable Land Management, Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, Uganda

3. Juraj Ujhazy, Program Manager, Wild Program, World Conservation Society, Uganda

4. Onesmus Mugyenyi, Legal Consultant, Executive Director, Advocated Colition for Development and Environment

5. Abwoli Y.K. Banana, Faculty of Forestry and Nature Conservation, Makerere University

6. Alex Muhwezi, Executive Director, Future Dialogues International

7. Hannah Murray, Coordinator, Katoomba Group Tropical America

8. Alice Ruhweza, Coordinator, Katoomba Group, East and Southern Africa

9. Sara Namirembe, Manager East and Southern Africa Katoomba Ecosystem Services Incubator

10. Sarah Opimo, Intern, World Conservation Society Uganda

11. Carol Bogezi, Intern, World Conservation Society

12. Charlotte Kalanzi, Intern, Eastern and Southern Africa Katoomba Group