High Forest, Low Deforestation

Forests with low deforestation rates need climate finance too

Regions with largely intact tropical forests and low deforestation rates, known as high forest, low deforestation, or HFLD regions, play an important role in stabilizing the global climate system.

As hosts to some of the world’s largest remaining intact ecosystems, HFLD regions support countless numbers of wild fauna and flora, as well as the livelihoods of Indigenous Peoples and forest-dwelling communities. Yet low deforestation rates don’t mean HFLD regions are safe from deforestation. Between 2010 and 2019 six countries lost their HFLD designation due to forest loss.

Maintaining low deforestation rates means removing threats that have ravaged many of the world’s tropical forests – illegal logging, mining, and the cutting or intentional burning of forests to expand agricultural production. Many HFLD regions don’t have a financial incentive to keep their forests alive in perpetuity and currently lack access to climate finance.

The financing models and carbon crediting methodologies used for HFLD regions need to be different than models used for regions with higher deforestation rates. This is why EDF is analyzing the tools to finance forest conservation, including through the use of high-quality carbon credits, for HFLD regions.

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