THE majority of Papua New Guineans living in rural areas need a better understanding of climate change and reduced emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD), Greenpeace Forest campaigner Dorothy Tekwie said.
She said this during the first National Road Show of the PNG Eco-forestry Forum on climate change specifically focusing on REDD.
“Locals need to have a better understanding of REDD and its key components including structures and processes.
“They also need to be informed to make decisions on how best to use their forest resources,” she said.
Ms Tekwie said the issues of climate change and REDD were not easy to address because they were complex and dynamic.
She said this, compounded with capacity constraints within the Government and civil society in PNG, made it difficult to carry out effective awareness on the issue.
“As a result, there exists a lot of confusion and misunderstanding of the concepts and the processes, thereby raising of unnecessary expectations.
“Government has failed to address past issues of corruption and landowners rights and now climate change is a big issue that needs urgent attention,” she said.
Eco-Forestry Forum (EFF) chairman Ken Mondiai said carbon trade work was a very complicated, and many did not understand its importance and effects.
“Rich industrialised countries are strongly encouraging us to look after our tropical forest and are ready to give us money for carbon trade, but they must reduce the level of offsetting emissions,” he said.
The forum was held in Madang and was officiated by Governor Sir Arnold Amet.
Participants included Government officials, NGOs, landowners and students.
The forum concluded yesterday.