Implementation of Guyana’s Readiness Preparation Proposal (R-PP) Terms of Reference – Consultant to Analyze Land Tenure and Carbon Ownership

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   Cooperative Republic of Guyana

Implementation of Guyana’s Readiness Preparation Proposal (R-PP)
Terms of Reference – Consultant to Analyze Land Tenure and Carbon Ownership to inform the allocation of Benefits and Rights and the Development of a Benefits Sharing Mechanism for the Implementation of REDD+ in Guyana

 

I. Background /Context

 

Guyana’s forest covers approximately 85% of the country and is estimated at 18.475 million hectares (Guyana Monitoring Reporting and Verifications System (MRVS) Interim Measures Report, 27 January, 2015). It contains over 5GtCO2 in above ground biomass. The second most important source of carbon dioxide emissions world-wide comes from deforestation and forest degradation, estimated at approximately 18% of global emissions. Guyana is committed to its international responsibilities and obligations, including obligations to address issues relating to climate change, more specifically, reductions of emissions from deforestation and forest degradation; conservation of forest carbon stock, sustainable forest management and the enhancement of forest carbon stock.

Part of the national policy of the government is that the forests of Guyana form an integral part of the national patrimony. This national patrimony falls under multiple jurisdictions; (1) The Guyana Forestry Commission – responsible for the administration and management of the nation’s forest resources; (2) Guyana Land and Surveys Commission – responsible for administration and management of State lands; (3) Guyana Geology and Mines Commission – responsible for mining and; (4) the Protected Areas Commission- responsible for protected areas. In addition, the government of Guyana has always recognized and upheld the land rights of indigenous people.

The government of The Cooperative Republic of Guyana (CRG) has embarked on a National Strategy towards the establishment of a Green Economy. The strategy includes the protection and sustainable management of the country’s forest patrimony in an effort to reduce global carbon emissions and at the same time attract resources to foster socio-economic growth and development.

The Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) is a global partnership focused on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+). The Readiness Fund of the FCPF assists tropical and sub-tropical developing countries in generating the systems and policies in preparation for REDD+, conserving forest carbon stock, supporting sustainable management and enhancing forest carbon stocks. To comply with FCPF requirements, the government of the CRG prepared a Readiness Preparation Proposal (RPP) that lays out a roadmap of preparation activities needed to be undertaken for Guyana to become REDD+ ready for all State Forests. The Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) through the Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC), the State Agency with the mandate for the administration and management of the State Forest Estate, is responsible for overseeing the national implementation of key technical aspects of REDD+ activities, including REDD+ readiness activities as outlined in Guyana’s R-PP.

An important aspect of the REDD+ Implementation Framework is that of the review and addressing of relevant aspects of carbon ownership and valuation. The REDD+ Implementation Framework will seek to incorporate forest carbon valuations into land use policies and decisions as well as development and investment projects across various sectors.

Community‐based forest management is carried out by indigenous and forest dependent communities in many REDD+ countries. One of its proven benefits is to reduce the rate of deforestation and to increase the biomass levels of existing forested areas, thereby, increasing the rate of uptake of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and reducing the risk of climate change. However, if carbon payments are to act as an incentive to communities to manage their forests sustainably, there has to be some guarantee that these communities will receive adequate financial compensation for the work and sacrifices they undertake. International trade in carbon credits could bring money and economic growth to those communities managing forests, plus the additional benefits mentioned above. However, for this to happen there needs to be increased clarity about who owns the carbon. If a community successfully manages a forest so that additional carbon is sequestered, do they have ownership rights over this sequestered carbon, and are these rights secured? Are they empowered to sell the carbon credits that they gain as a result of this management?

In addition, it is required that a benefits sharing mechanism be put in place that will be equitable and mutually agreeable by parties involved. This is to facilitate the sharing of benefits received by Guyana from the REDD+ indicatives and activities, amongst all stakeholders and stakeholder groups, in an equally agreeable manner.

 

   II. Scope of work:

 

The Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) seeks to engage the service of the Consultant to analyze land tenure and carbon ownership in Guyana. The objectives of the consultancy are to provide information and recommendations related to carbon ownership and the allocation of benefits and rights related to carbon offset payments, as well as to develop an equitable and mutually agreeable Benefits Sharing Mechanism for REDD+ Implementation in Guyana. The consultations and stakeholder engagement elements in this Contract are expected to be executed in close synergy with Component 1b of Guyana’s RPP Activities (Consultation and Stakeholder Engagement on REDD+ & Readiness Activities in Guyana). The Consultant will be expected to complete the following:

 

A.  Analyze Land Tenure and Carbon Ownership to inform the allocation of Benefits and Rights

 

        a. Analyze the current situation of carbon rights in Guyana. Identify the legitimate holders of forested areas who may have a legitimate claim to forest and non-forest carbon rights in Guyana by undertaking an analysis of the current conditions in Guyana, including the legal and regulatory framework in Guyana. Identify any uncertainties in the current legal and regulatory framework with regard to forest rights and the proposed allocation of carbon rights. The analysis should encompass land tenure and use laws, forest laws, mining laws, policies regarding customary law, inheritance and succession laws, and contract laws. The analysis should also review international conventions Guyana has ratified. In the event that carbon rights are not explicitly defined and recognized in national or international law, determine whether or not there are other rights that implicitly form the basis for carbon rights. Within the scope of this analysis, identify the existing rights that indigenous communities and other forest communities have to land, forest resources, and environmental services, and determine the extent to which the current framework provides reasonably secure entitlement to a benefit from goods and services consistent with a REDD+ regime.

 

Identify the likely carbon rights associated with different types of land tenure and security within forested areas in Guyana. Identify the variations in the type and duration of tenure, including the different forms of ownership; contractual or traditional usufruct; long-term, or short-term; whether tenure is codified in statutory law or based in customary law; whether the rights may or may not be documented and recorded in a national registry; and whether the rights are transferrable, inheritable, or devisable by will. Determine also the degree of security for different land tenure/carbon rights based on the capacity for legal enforcement in Guyana.

 

        b. Prepare a comparative review of how land tenure, land rights and carbon ownership are recognized in REDD+ countries, identifying the strengths and weaknesses of each.

 

        c. Develop a proposal for a system for the allocation carbon rights and benefits for implementation of REDD+ in Guyana, taking into account different land tenure and associated land use. Include recommendations that should be taken into account for drafting and/or amending legislation in order to clarify the ownership and allocation of carbon rights. (Note that the Consultant will not be required to draft legislation but rather to identify the sections and clauses of various laws and or regulations that may require amendment or identify gaps that may require the drafting of new laws and regulations, and indicate the technical aspects that should be taken into account in reviewing).

 

Prepare a draft version of the proposed system for the allocation carbon rights and benefits for implementation of REDD+ in Guyana document, to be presented to and discussed with representatives of stakeholder groups. Prepare culturally-appropriate communication and outreach materials describing the proposed carbon allocation system. Conduct workshops with stakeholders to discuss and obtain feedback on the proposed carbon allocation system. Consultations/workshops are to be executed according to the national and IDB guidelines for stakeholder engagement. Prepare a final version of the proposed system for the allocation carbon rights and benefits for implementation of REDD+ in Guyana taking into account the comments and feedback obtained from the stakeholder workshops.

 

 

B. Development of a Benefits Sharing Mechanism

 

        a. Examine benefit sharing arrangements in other REDD+ programs around the world that may serve as examples of best practices and lessons learned, and provide a review of applicable mechanisms and tools that have made benefit sharing arrangements from other countries successful. Examine international and other laws governing benefit sharing and provide a review of the relevant legal framework governing benefit sharing arrangements. It is expected that from the examination of existing models, a set of requirements of international best practices for benefits sharing will be identified. This will then be translated into a set of requirements for the development of a benefits sharing mechanism for REDD+ in Guyana.

 

        b. Examine and Assess models in Guyana for benefits sharing mechanisms and identify models applicable to REDD+ implementation – There are a number of models for benefits sharing that are proposed and being implemented. The Consultant is expected to examine and assess the suitability of these models for implementation within Guyana’s local context, including in areas of calculation of payments, definition of forests, and the MRVS among other relevant areas.

 

        c. Identify any institutional (legal or organizational) changes that may be required to implement the mechanism. Identify key enabling actions to prioritize. Review laws that may enable or, conversely, pose a challenge to, benefit sharing mechanism implementation. If needed suggest new laws and regulations, or amendments to existing laws and regulations that would enable the effective functioning of a benefit sharing mechanism.

 

        d. Conduct Stakeholder Consultation & Engagement Sessions– The consultant is expected to engage relevant stakeholders directly through a number of consultations and stakeholder engagement sessions. The consultations and stakeholder engagement elements in this Contract are expected to be executed in close synergy with Component 1b (Country Organization and Consultations for REDD+ Readiness) of Guyana’s RPP, and benefit greatly from this process. Translation facilities for consultations and discussions with IPs should be facilitated in order to ensure participation of all stakeholders.

 

        e. Design an equitable benefits sharing mechanism for REDD+ in Guyana- the proposed mechanism must be designed with complete operational plans, based on outcomes of the activities detailed above. It must benefit from the outcomes of the REDD+ Strategy. This phase is expected to be executed in close synergy with the development of the REDD+ Strategy and SESA for Guyana. It should detail the management and legal and operational framework needed to begin operations. The design should include a draft of the flow of monetary and non-monetary benefits. It is expected that this mechanism will be transparent and accountable and promotes equitable distribution of benefits. Further, it must respect traditional social structures and reach vulnerable groups. It should include Indigenous Communities and forestry and mining stakeholders, with consideration of their particular needs and interests. Prepare the institutional set-up and start pre-launch promotion.

 

        f. Roll out a plan for the benefit sharing mechanism – It must benefit from the outcomes of the REDD+ Strategy. This phase is expected to be executed in close synergy with the development of the REDD+ Strategy and SESA for Guyana. The consultant will engage with stakeholders and agree on a concrete benefit sharing mechanism that defines the way it will operate, who will be responsible for its proper functioning, how benefits will be shared and distributed.

 

Design a Pilot approach for the implementation plan prior to an approved (FPIC) full-scale operation with appropriate monitoring, reporting and verification systems.

 

        g. Identify financing mechanisms that would ensure long term sustainability Propose a funding plan to ensure sufficient resources are mobilized to implement the enabling actions required.

 

        h. Identify areas where capacities should be built to ensure the sustainability of the Mechanism– An assessment of capacities should be conducted of the local stakeholders that will be involved not only on the implementation of the benefits sharing mechanism, but also in the management of benefits received. A Capacity Building Plan should be developed to target such areas for relevant stakeholders involved both at the Government as well as community level. This is expected to contribute to the long term sustainability of the Mechanism.

 

 

   III. Profile of Consultants

 

  1. Qualifications – A PhD in, Environmental/Forest Economics, Ecology, Forestry/Forest Management, Natural Resources Management, Environmental Law, Land Administration, or a related field, with a strong prominence on development of land tenure management, carbon accounting and knowledge of REDD+.
  2. Experience – Previous experience (more than five years) in the development of strategies and benefits sharing mechanisms at the national level would be an advantage. It is imperative that the candidate has knowledge of REDD+ and its international requirements. Knowledge and experience in issues relating or relevant to REDD+, the FCFP process and procedures as well as the socio-economic conditions in Guyana would be an added advantage.
  3. Skills and Abilities- Candidate must possess excellent oral and written English communication skills for training in areas such as REDD+ and strategy development. The Candidate must be able to articulate ideas in a clear and concise fashion that target different educational level of understanding, and should be willing to facilitate a few trips to the hinterland region of the country.
  4. Technological Awareness– Candidate must have the ability to make effective use of required computer software and other equipment relevant to the successful completion of the post.
  5. Teamwork: Good interpersonal skills and ability to establish and maintain effective working relations in a multicultural organization. Ability to provide effective support in relation to work conducted by colleagues.
  6. Availability: The Consultant is expected to make his/her self available throughout the duration of the project.

 

   IV.  Authority and Responsibility

a. The role of the Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR)

The MNR has full authority and responsibility for this contract which includes oversight over the service provider and of the procurement process. The MNR has been tasked with the responsibility of overseeing the process to develop and implement the National REDD+ Strategy, as well as readiness activities under the FCPF. A Project Execution Unit (PEU) was established as a new operational unit to implement all FCPF REDD+ related activities. The Ministry of Natural Resources, through the Project Coordinator will provide access to relevant personnel and information to be used in the preparation of the information and recommendations related to carbon ownership and the allocation of benefits and rights related to carbon offset payments. The management of MNR will, through the Project Coordinator, approve all outputs from this consultancy.

b. The Role of the Consultants -Outputs & Deliverables

 

The deliverables to be accomplished during this assignment are:

Analyze Land Tenure and Carbon Ownership to inform the allocation of Benefits and Rights

  1. Inception Report with detailed work plan, in collaboration with the MNR PEU, detailing activities and outputs for the duration of the assignment.
  2. Report on analysis of the current situation of carbon rights in Guyana.
  3. Comparative review of how land tenure, land rights and carbon ownership are recognized in REDD+ countries, identifying the strengths and weaknesses of each
  4. Draft version of the proposed system for the allocation carbon rights and benefits for implementation of REDD+ in Guyana.
  5. Culturally-appropriate communication and outreach materials describing the proposed carbon allocation system.
  6. Report/s on stakeholder engagements/workshops for the Draft version of the proposed system for the allocation carbon rights and benefits for implementation of REDD+ in Guyana.
  7. Final version of the proposed system for the allocation carbon rights and benefits for implementation of REDD+ in Guyana.

 

Development of a Benefits Sharing Mechanism

  1. Paper on the requirements of international best practices for benefits sharing and the options in the REDD+ context for Guyana.
  2. Report on examination and assessment of existing international and national benefits sharing mechanisms and identification of models applicable to REDD+ implementation in Guyana
  3. Report on Stakeholder Consultation & Engagement Sessions & Feedback
  4. Paper identifying any institutional (legal or organizational) changes that may be required to implement the mechanism; and the financing mechanisms that will ensure long term sustainability;
  5. Design of an equitable benefits sharing mechanism and an action plan to roll out the benefits sharing mechanism for REDD+ in Guyana including a capacity building plan for relevant stakeholders.

 

   V. Schedule of Payments

The consultancy services will be contracted for a lump-sum with a breakdown to both specific components (Analyze Land Tenure and Carbon Ownership to inform the allocation of Benefits and Rights and a Benefits Sharing Mechanism) and will be paid in the following manner:

A. Analyze Land Tenure and Carbon Ownership to inform the allocation of Benefits and Rights:

  • 10% upon submission and acceptance of detailed work plan for the whole consultancy;
  • 10% upon submission and acceptance of final versions of products mentioned in items (ii) through (iii) above and an adjusted work plan for the consultation process;
  • 10% upon submission and acceptance of final versions of products mentioned in items (iv) through (v) above and an adjusted work plan for the consultation process;
  • 20% upon submission and acceptance of final versions of products (vi) and (vii);

B. Benefits Sharing Mechanism:

  • 10% upon submission and acceptance of detailed work plan for the whole consultancy;
  • 10% upon submission and acceptance of final versions of products mentioned in items (i) through (ii);
  • 10% upon submission and acceptance of final versions of products mentioned in items (iii) through (iv);
  • 20% upon submission and acceptance of final versions of products (v).

   VI. Schedule and Duration

The work of this project is expected to be conducted over a 12 months period, commencing October 2018.