CODE REDD Membership Criteria and Guiding Principles
To join the Code REDD Platform as a REDD+ project developer or organization, we require that the highest available standards in the market be achieved, which today we believe include:
- Agree to and ultimately achieve VCS Validation and Verification
- Agree to and ultimately achieve CCB Validation and Verification at Gold level
- Obtain FSC or another valid form of SFM Certification for any Low Impact, Sustainable Timber Harvesting and ensure the BSM (Benefits Sharing Mechanism) was agreed to via a formal FPIC process
- Document overall FPIC and Grievance Processes for Communities and other Stakeholders
- Adhere to the Code REDD Code of Conduct and all applicable national and host-country laws
In addition to the above, more details, our Code of Conduct, and initial membership application process are outlined below. The Code of Conduct is publicly available and is intended to be a living and evolving document, based on self-reflection and evaluation. Code REDD will continually review it to adopt/incorporate new and improved standards as they become accepted. Code REDD welcomes continuous feedback on the content of the Code of Conduct from all stakeholders.
CODE REDD Code of Conduct
Code REDD’s Code of Conduct articulates our commitment to REDD+ project development of the highest standards, and builds upon the ethical principles established by existing bodies such as the International Finance Corporation, World Wildlife Fund, Eneco, and the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Alliance, among others.
All Code REDD members are subject to a Code of Conduct. It aims to provide all members and strategic partners with objective and transparent criteria regarding Code REDD’s while supporting and scaling best practices.
To join the Code REDD Platform as a REDD+ project or developer, Code REDD requires that the projects achieve the highest available standards in the market which are currently Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) and Climate, Community and Biodiversity Standards (CCBS) which will need to be complemented by FSC or SFM Certification in select cases of community-owned projects that include Low Impact and Sustainable Timber Harvesting. Code REDD aims to avoid deforestation in all forms, however, in certain circumstances, limited, sustainable use of the forest resources will be accepted when enacted by local indigenous groups or traditional forest communities.
Objectives & Activities
Code REDD mission is to support and scale the REDD+ mechanism to realize its full potential to empower people, preserve forests, and protect wildlife. We work towards this goal through the following programs:
- Code REDD’s Corporate Engagement Program is engaging corporations on REDD+ through education, awareness, and value communication, thereby reducing the perception of risk and encouraging corporate support for and participation in REDD+..
- Code REDD’s Policy Alignment Program aligns and builds support for REDD+ within climate policies, environmental & integrated reporting, and development priorities.
- Code REDD’s REDD+ Community Stakeholder Platform is building, uniting, and advancing the global REDD+ community in order to catalyze collaboration, innovation, and action so that REDD+ may achieve its full potential.
Principles and Membership Criteria
Code REDD adheres to the safeguards adopted by the UNFCCC in Cancun and to the 5 guiding principles for REDD+; as later adapted by Eneco for corporate level engagements, and is summarized/further defined in the below criteria that define Code REDD’s Code of Conduct for its members.
Principle 1: CLIMATE
REDD+ demonstrably contributes to greenhouse gas emission reductions. Code REDD Members support REDD+ results in real emission reductions or removals.
- Code REDD listed Projects are independently validated and verified, have agreed to become independently validated and verified, or are in the process of becoming validated and verified against the highest available standards which are currently VCS and Gold level CCB; standards which are publicly available.
- Code REDD members and listed projects comply with all REDD+ related host country regulation and aim for recognition under the host country’s national REDD+ strategy.
- Code REDD member organizations commit to supporting high-quality, high-impact REDD+ in whatever capacity is applicable to their organization.
Principle 2: BIODIVERSITY
REDD+ maintains and/or enhances forest biodiversity and ecosystem services as defined by UN CBD.
- Code REDD listed projects do not involve native forest conversion and/or unsustainable logging; promote conservation of natural forests as well as their ecosystem services and biological diversity.
- Project developers execute a biodiversity and an environmental impact assessment in the project design phase informed by the guidelines in the SBIA Manual.
- Code REDD listed projects do not involve commercial, sport, or illegal hunting, nor do they allow wildlife trafficking of any kind. The project must have a specific plan to work towards elimination of all hunting of threatened or endangered species within the project development activities.
Principle 3: LIVELIHOODS
REDD+ contributes to sustainable and equitable development by strengthening the livelihoods of forest-dependent communities.
- Project developers execute a social impact assessment in the project design phase informed by the guidelines in the SBIA Manual.
- Project Developers cooperate with local organizations such as NGOs, community based organizations etc. if available on the ground to ensure community involvement, full participation of civil society and achievement of appropriate non-carbon related goals as well in their REDD+ Projects.
Principle 4: RIGHTS
REDD+ recognizes and respects the rights of indigenous peoples and local communities as recognized by UNDRIP and UNHRC.
- In the Code REDD listed Projects land tenure/use rights must be clear, ideally legally defined, and in all cases not in dispute between stakeholders.
- Code REDD listed projects endeavor to avoid eviction/resettlements in all cases, and do not involve eviction/resettlements that are involuntary or uncompensated, except for certain cases of lawful removal of illegal occupiers.
- Project Developers ensure the proper execution of stakeholder consultation according to Free Prior Informed Consent principles and makes sure that there is a functional, accessible and transparent grievance procedure.
- In the case where the Code REDD member does not have legal authority (or cannot obtain written legal authority) to represent the project, then the member, the project owner, and the legal representative are required to review and sign the Code of Conduct.
Principle 5: FAIR & EFFECTIVE FUNDING
REDD+ mobilizes immediate, adequate and predictable resources for action in priority forest areas in an equitable, transparent, participatory and coordinated manner.
- Revenues flow through to benefit the affected forest communities in an equitable and transparent way such that forest communities are compensated fairly for their involvement in the project and stewardship and / or ownership of underlying forest resources.
Principle 6: APPLICABLE LAWS, RULES & REGULATIONS
REDD+ Projects are carried out respecting international anti-corruption laws, ethical employment and business practices guidelines.
- All Code REDD Members agree to comply with all applicable regulations of their host country.
- All Code REDD Members agree not to directly or indirectly pay, or authorize the payment of, monies or other things of value to any officer or employee of local, national, and international governments; public international organizations; political parties or candidates for political office; or any other person to obtain influence or preference for the above-described activities.
- Members of Code REDD shall not engage in other acts or transactions that are in violation with the anti-bribery or anti-money laundering legislation of any government, including the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the UK Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001, the Money Laundering Regulation 1993 and the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, and the applicable country legislation implementing the OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions.
- Code REDD Members shall comply with international and national employment and labor laws in countries where they operate. Project Developers should comply with international and national employment and labor laws in the host country of the Projects, and to the greatest extent practicable, employ local personnel and provide training with a view to improving skill levels.
Principle 7: MONITORING, REPORTING & EVALUATION
- The Code of Conduct is publicly available and is intended to be a living and evolving document, based on self-reflection and evaluation. Code REDD will continually review it to adopt/incorporate new and improved standards as they become accepted. Code REDD welcomes continuous feedback on the content of the Code from its stakeholders.
- All Members wishing to join Code REDD will be required to agree to the Code of Conduct. Project Developers must fill out the detailed Checklist and keep the checklist updated throughout the life of their projects in order to ensure full compliance with the Principles and membership criteria.