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Fast Start Finance for forests: the challenge of maintaining momentum

Research reports

Written by Charlene Watson, Will McFarland, Smita Nakhooda, Alice Caravani

Since 2007, developed countries have provided substantial international public finance for programmes that will reduce emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD+). This paper seeks to understand the motivations and objectives of the five largest Fast Start Finance (FSF) contributors to support REDD+.

This study draws on research into the five largest contributors of FSF, Germany, Japan, Norway, the US, and the UK, prepared by ODI in collaboration with WRI, the open climate network, Japan's Institute of Global Environment Studies, Germanwatch, and CiCERO. As part of those studies, we compiled data on over 4,000 individual projects supported during the FSF period. We have focussed on REDD+ contributions that are delivered through bilateral channels, as the delivery of multilateral REDD+ finance is relatively better understood.

The report finds that:

  • The majority of REDD+ FSF was programmed bilaterally, primarily as grants.
  • The delivery of REDD+ finance reflects multiple contributor-country objectives, including poverty reduction, and biodiversity protection.

  • Major contributions have targeted heavily forested countries. Overall, however, emissions from deforestation and the allocation of finance are not closely linked.

Charlene Watson, William McFarland, Smita Nakhooda, and Alice Caravani