REDD+ National Exposure Visit

1. Exposure Visit for REDD+ Management body and Technical Working Groups

Visited Place: Humbo CDM Project, Sodo Community Assisted Natural Regeneration Carbon Project, and Bale ECO-region REDD+ project

Date: FROM 22 -28JUNE /2014

Itinerary of the Team

The Team that was led by Dr. Solomon, Pilot Project Coordinator of REDD+ Project Office travelled by the two costter cars and arrived in Sodo city, Wolayta Zone, Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Regional State (SNNPRS) on 22 June2014 at around 6 pm late in the afternoon. After two nights stay in Sodo town the Team traveled to Shashemene by the two same cars, where it stayed for three days visit, i.e. from24 to 27 of June 2014. The Team’s composition was drawn from Technical Working Groups (TWGs) which consists of regional focal persons and the three task force members (i.e. Monitoring, Reporting and Evaluation (MRV);Strategic Environmental Social Assessment (SESA); Strategic Tax Force and Focal Members; and REDD+ Management body and Secretariat Staff (See Annex 3). As seen in Annex4 however, except few, most invited participants could not be able to participate in the exposure visit.

Objectives of the Exposure Trip

According to the invitation letter, the overall objective of the exposure visit is to:-

  • Ø learn how carbon projects initiatives are being implemented,
  • Ø how different actors working together for effective implementations of carbon projects
  • Ø increase awareness to the TWGs about community engagement, benefit sharing arrangement in forest carbon projects, grievance redress mechanism and
  • Ø help Monitor/supervise implementation of REDD+ pilots.

Participants of the Exposure Visit

No Name of Participants Address E-mail
1 Ato Beruk Alemayehu Amhara Regional State REDD+ Focal Person & Technical Working Member
2 Ato Siraj Duna SNNPR Regional State REDD+ Focal Person
3 Ato Mikre Adane Gambella Focal Person & Technical Working Member
4 Ato Belay Mekonene Afar Focal Person Technical Working Member
5 Ato Chanyalew Gelan BGRS Focal Person & Technical Working Member Chanyalewgelan
6 Ato Yidenekachew Habte EWNRA- REDD+ Strategy task force member
7 Ato Degelo Sendabo EMA- REDD+ MRV Task force
8 Dr. Abdella Gure WGCF- REDD+ MRV
9 Ato Desalegn Kebede ILCA- REDD+ SESA/ESMF C & P Task force
10 Ato Yonas Tekel Michael MEF – SESA/ESMF C & P Task force
9 Ato Temesgen Yohannes FRC – SESA/ESMF C & P Task force
10 Ato Yonas Abiye EJA – SESA/ESMF C & P Task force
11 Ato Yonas Tekel Michael MEF – SESA/ESMF C & P Task force
12 Dr. YitebituMoges- MEF -REDD+ Secretariat
13 Dr. Solomon Zewdi MEF – REDD+ Secretariat
14 Ato Getachew Shiferaw MEF – REDD+ Secretariat
15 Ato Walelign Fetahi – MEF – REDD+ Secretariat
16 Ato Wondwoson Adefres MEF – REDD+ Secretariat
17 Ato Mekete Derbush MEF – REDD+ Secretariat
18 W/O Konjit Bayessa MEF – REDD+ Secretariat
19 Ato Robel Tesfaye MEF – Forest Sector
20 Ato Kurabachew Tenaw
21 Ato Birhanu Hayelom MEF – Environment Sector
22 Ato Simon Berehanu MEF – Forest Sector
23 Ato Tamene MEF -Support staff ( Camera Man)
24 Ato Taye Dugassa Oromiya REDD+

2. Awareness Raising and Field Exposure the Staff of MEFCC

Visited Place: Bonga Biosphere reserve
Date: June 10-20, 2016
REDD+ is among the key identified levers for emission reduction targeted for realizing the Green Economy in Ethiopia, About 50% of the national emission reduction is anticipated to be achieved in the forest sector through support of REDD+ program. The REDD+ initiative has been in operation since 2013 that aims to make Ethiopia ready for participation in the global REDD+ mechanism. Ethiopia considers REDD+ as an opportunity and viable source of sustainable finance for investment in forest management, forest conservation and forest restoration to enhance multiple benefits of forests, including (but not limited to) biodiversity conservation, watershed management, increased resilience to climate change, improved livelihoods and reduced poverty. The REDD+ readiness is expected to prepare a national REDD+ strategy, establish the baseline emission for the forest sector, prepare safeguards instruments, design an MRV system for measuring the impacts of REDD+ policies and measures during implementation. The process of REDD+ design should be made in a consultative and transparent manner though the participation of stakeholders in an organized manner.

REDD+ readiness should undertake a wide range of consolations and awareness raising activities, and these represent the core of the REDD+ readiness. The consultation, participation and outreach subcomponent is designed to achieve the purpose of broad consultation with and participation of key stakeholders for future REDD+ programs and to ensure participation of different social groups, transparency and accountability of decision-making.

MEFCC is the leading institution for realizing the green development vision of Ethiopia. REDD+/forestry has been identified as a major lever for emission reduction. It is high time that we make awareness raising, particularly to the staff of MEFCC to mobilize the necessary support in the design and implementation of REDD+ program in Ethiopia.

The Objectives

  • • To raise awareness to MEFCC staff about REDD+ and forestry
  • • To enable the staff to have direct observation to the pristine forests of southwest Ethiopia thereby motivate staff towards conservation of natural forests
  • • To appreciate the support of the MEFCC administrative and technical staff towards realizing REDD+ readiness by way of gratitude
  • • To create an opportunity for the staff to reflect on the REDD+ program in Ethiopia and gather feedback and comments to improve our future engagement as an institution in relation to REDD+ program

About 150 employees of MEFCC participated in the event. Particular attention had been paid to the lower level staff (administrative and technical staff) as higher level staffs have been exposed to the REDD+ activities in various forums.

International Exposure Visit

1. Indonesia Exposure Visit

Visited Place: Muara Angke Wildlife Reserve Center, Indonesia

Date: January 18 to 28,2015


Riverine Mangrove forest

Capacity building through diverse method is among the most important activities of the REDD+ Readiness Process. As part of the efforts to increase awareness of REDD+ and capacity to develop a national approach in Ethiopia, the National REDD+ secretariat organized this exposure visit. Eleven member team drawn from Ministry of environment & Forest, Regional Administrative and relevant regional offices, and Research institutes (Environment & forest Institutes and CIFOR ), led by State Minister of Forest Sector of Ministry of Environment and Forest were visited Indonesia between January 18 to 28,2015 (delegates list are attached in Annex I). Indonesia is one of the REDD+ advanced country and is chosen for this exposure visit due to their practical experience on different levels of REDD+ process as well as existing progress in developing a national REDD+ policy. The exposure visit had two major objectives to look at the key concerns and practices related to REDD+ and National level REDD+ architecture as well as to share experience on forest governance system. The study program was conceived and designed in regard to these two issues being considered with special significance for Ethiopia and the participants will get practical lessons and help them to give comprehension guidance on REDD+ process in their respective regions.

Lesson Learned

From the exposure visit the participants’ organized relevant lessons which can be adapted and scaled up in the context of the country. The relevant experiences compiled by the delegates are:

  1. Forest definition of the country encompasses potential forest land but not currently under forest. The definition is also important for Ethiopia to include the potential non forested land to create new forest.
  2. Forest classification of the country is based on function( conservation forest, Protection forest, permanent production forest, limited production forest and others). In our case the classification is based on forest vegetation type. If we adapt the forest classification system based on function will have significant meaning to mange and utilize the forest in a sustainable way.
  3. Social forestry program followed by the country gave immense benefit to the country forest conservation and enhancement since it involve local community in the village forest program, and community plantation forest.
  4. Community forest establishment were carried out on critical catchment area by establishing village nursery on 50% of the total village of the country. delineation of each community forest was made using Google earth. The strategy is also helpful for rehabilitating and creating new forest on our degraded mountainous landscape.
  5. In order to reduce forest degradation caused by fuel wood extraction Indonesia established fuel wood plantation sites with a species that have short rotation period such as Calliandera. In our case it is also good to have fuel wood plantation in addition to dissemination of cook stove as a strategy to reduce degradation of forest.
  6. In the Ministry of Environment and forest they have well organized data base management system.
  7. The REDD+ agency of Indonesia has established financing instrument called FREDDI. This instrument will identify financial source from international and national source to support the REDD+ process. Ethiopia should also strengthen the already established CRGE facility and also forest carbon fund directorate of MEF.
  8. Government of Indonesia provide ecosystem restoration concession for 35 years. this practice also good to rehabilitate our degraded land.
  9. Forest sector have national standards which prepare standard for forest product, and services including data collection standard for MRV system.
  10. To avoid forest fire problem Indonesia has forest fire monitoring system and to access information about forest fire the country is working with NASA, WRI and other organizations. This is also good to prevent forest fire caused by anthropogenic effect in our large area of woodland.
  11. Research, Universities and development institutions are working in collaboration.
  12. Forests huge contribution to the GDP so working towards this important
  13. Their Forest sample intensity for national forest inventory is revised regularly
  14. They have institutional stability is crucial for sustainability of the forest resource of the country
  15. Their domain of forest land is clear and we should define our domain and embrace other issues like terrain too
  16. We need MRV system should be established for afforestation, degradation too
  17. Presidential level committeemen they have
  18. Funding diversification is necessary for REDD+ to accomplish the complex activities of REDD+ as well as to support and solve problems related to forest sector
  19. Collecting so many data during REDD+ process is important not only for REDD+ but also for forest sector in general
  20. Thinking REDD+ beyond carbon and working on the co- benefit of REDD+ will help for sustainable management of the forest


HE Ato Kebede Yimam Ministry of Environment and Forest State minster of Forest sector
Dr Yitebitu Moges Abebe Ministry of Environment and Forest, National REDD+ Secretariat Coordinator of National REDD+ Secretariat
Ato Eyob Tenkir Shikur Minster of Environment and Forest, national REDD+ secretariat National REDD+ Environmental Safeguard Specialist
HE Ahmed Nasser Ahmed Benshangule Gumuz Regional State Administrative Office President of the regional state
Ato Didha Dirriba Ayane Oromia Forest and wild Life Enterprise Director General
Ato Semma Tiruneh Shiferaw Amhara Regional State Advisor of Amhara Regional State
Ato Shumye Alemu Dessie Amhara Regional State Agricultural Bureau Vice Head of the Agricultural Bureau
Ato Getachew Shiferaw Woldeab Ministry of Environment and Forest, National REDD+ Secretariat National REDD+ Communication Specialist
Dr Yigardu Mulatu Mngesha Ministry of Environment and Forest, Environment & Forestry Research Institute Senior Researcher

2. Exposure Visits in Republic of Korea and Peoples Republic of China

Visited Place: Republic of Korea and Anji County of Zhejiang province, China

Date: March 2016


The main goal of this mission is to gain experience and build capacity to enhance fast and large scale forest sector development in Ethiopia so as to contribute to the multiple benefits inter alia mitigation, adaptation, poverty reduction and rural livelihood improvement. In particular in South Korea, focus has been on the knowledge on how to sustainably manage and protect forests, how to successfully engage in bold reforestation processes nationwide, and how to stabilize high forest cover and position forestry in a comprehensive vision of sustainable development The visits will further help to better understand policy and legal instruments, practical experiences and institutional arrangements to position forestry as a key lever for the climate resilience and green economy in Ethiopia.

The learning exchange had the following specific objectives:

  • Understanding the key elements of the policy and legal instruments including the law enforcement mechanisms that foster sector development at transformational scale in S.Korea and PRC.
  • Assess and grasp the institutional arrangement that elevated the forestry sector as part of the national vision and sustain critical position in national economy and society at large.
  • Understanding key factors of success including systems to navigate through weakness, risks, strengths and opportunities to make progress in the sector.
  • Understanding how forests are monitored, managed and valued including marketing and value addition mechanism for forest products.
  • Assess the role of the different stakeholders in the process of such a remarkable achievement in the forest sector of South Korea and China

Lessons learnt

The Republic of Korea successfully implemented the National Reforestation Programme, and restored the forest ecosystem which now occupies 64% of the country’s landscape. During the implementation of the First and Second Plans from 1973 to 1987, unstocked area decreased by 77%, forest area increased 9%, and total growing stock increased 270%. One could learn the following lessons from the success of the National Reforestation Programme.

First, the most important factors were the continuous support from the head of the country, and the fact that forest rehabilitation was made the government ‘stop priority. President Park himself led the planning, implementation, and coordination of the Programme. He transformed the KFS to a more effective implementation, and coordinated national finance and administrative power to fully support the Programme. Also, he wove the Programme in with other top priority government projects such as the 5-Year Economic Development Plan, Saemaul Undong, and the National Comprehensive Development Plan. Once forest rehabilitation became the top priority government project, national finance could be funneled continuously to the Programme. Additionally, central and regional administrative/technical powers were mobilized for the reforestation, erosion control, and clearing slash-and-burn fields. Police forces were mobilized for forest protection. The case of the ROK suggests that in order for a developing country with low income level to solve forest problems, it requires strong and committed leadership along with efforts to put forest issues in the mainstream.

Second, it is important for the government to diagnose the underlying causes of deforestation, and then to establish a comprehensive plan to address these issues. The Korean government identified direct drivers early on, such as household fuel wood use, illegal logging, and slash-and-burn fields, and understood that the underlying cause for all of these drivers was poverty. The government successfully initiated the 5-Year Economic Development Plan in1962 to alleviate poverty. With economic growth, fuel wood was no longer the primary energy source for households, and with the rural population migrating to urban areas, pressures on forests causing degradation were decreased. Challenges like the prevention of illegal logging, the clearing of slash-and-burn fields, and creation of forest resources were solved through the establishment of the comprehensive Forest Rehabilitation Programme, as well as with the support of administrative, police and technological power led by the country. The successful case of the ROK shows that even with allow income level and enforcement of strong governance framework, government efforts can overcome forestry challenges.

Third, with clear policy objectives in the background, continuous promotion is needed to bring out the capacity of the citizens. The ROK at the time had been suffering through natural disasters such as drought, flood, and soil loss every year. With the visible growth in the industrial sector, the denuded forests became the top priority of the government. The government announced its quantitative reforestation goal of one million ha within the First Plan, along with its long-term vision of complete reforestation. Due to awareness raising, the nation acknowledged the necessity and supported the government’s decision because of shared vision.

The government emphasized and reinforced the ideology that ‘planting a tree is an act of patriotism’ with the aim of developing a nationwide tree planting movement. Every year the government chose a targeted area for planting in January and February. Then in March, it starts advocating for the needs of forest rehabilitation and forest protection through each ministry by training local populations and promoting through mass media. This promotion reached its peak every year on April 5, National Arbor Day. In other words, the government needs to present clear policy goals and use a systematic publicity strategy to achieve continuous promotion of the Programme over a long period of time to ensure the support and attention of the nation.

There were unintended consequences of the 1970sNational Reforestation Programme. ‘The Absolute Greening’ summed up the reforestation policies of the period perfectly. As the name implies, during the 1970s, the government and public took the lead in the tree-planting without taking the forest owners preference of tree species into consideration. As a consequence, most forest owners ended up relying on government-led reforestation policies and grants, rather than taking a stance on matters concerning their forests. In later years, establishing cooperative governance between the government-led National Reforestation Programme and stakeholders became one of the programme’s top priorities.

The National Reforestation Programme was implemented from 1973 to 1987, and was primarily responsible for restoring forest ecosystems in the ROK. During this period, not only was the deforested area (26% of the country) restored, but the size of forest and also the growing stock showed drastic increases. This is clear evidence that the Forest Rehabilitation Plans achieved its goal successfully. Furthermore, the success has spread to several different sectors showing positive outcomes like land restoration, flood prevention, recovery of biodiversity, and an increase in water supply and recreational forests. Forests cover about 64% of the total land area. Given that, it is safe to say forest is the most essential terrestrial ecosystem within the ROK. Against this backdrop, reviving forests meant restoring forest ecosystems. Continuous success with the Forest Rehabilitation Plans became the driving force behind sustainable economic growth and improved quality of life for the nation.

Equally critical is the role of the Forest Rehabilitation Plans in initiating SFM. With restored forest ecosystems, the volume of forest resources grows, and so does the quality of life for wildlife species and humans that rely on forests for their livelihood. Moreover, the success also had positive effects on biodiversity and securing forest water resources. Forests not only offer ample economic opportunities for people, but provide them with recreational services. The more a society and its economy develop, the more forests become a part of popular culture. These are only examples of the benefits which are provided by forests. In other words, the successful implementation of the Plans was a significant stepping stone for SFM, allowing forests to function ecologically, economically, socially, and culturally.

Thanks to National Reforestation Programme, the ROK achieved successful forest transition. Over time, lost forest fully recovered, and volume grew. In the 1950s, Korean forest coverage hit its lowest, marking up only 35% of the landscape. From that point on, forest coverage only increased, and is currently managed to stay proportionately higher than India, China, and historical Europe. The ROK is not the only such success story. The USA and New Zealand also successfully restored their lost forests. However, considering countries with less than 10% forest cover like Scotland, Denmark, and China, the Korea’s case is certainly impressive. No account of Korea’s success in forest restoration would be complete without highlighting the role of government leadership. Its experience has provided useful insights to developing countries like China, India, and Vietnam which carried out similar forest transition projects from 1990 to 2005. Lessons explicitly captured through this learning exchange are listed as follows:

  1. Capable and stable institutional setup and commitment at various levels enabled S. Korea to achieve miraculous forest rehabilitation success in a relatively short period of time.
  2. The history of forest rehabilitation in S. Korea has dynamically evolved with public demand through phases in to a sustainable forest management system that has significant contribution for global green growth.
  3. The forestry and non- forestry factors for success are key for forest rehabilitation success in developing countries
  4. Korean afforestation success has targeted on the critical drivers of deforestation policy and actions (e.g. slash and burn agriculture, fuel wood demand) anchored through appropriate alternative opportunities.
  5. Thematically focused autonomous specialized institutions (research, seed, training, recreation etc) has technically guided and supported the national effort.
  6. The economic and public benefits emanated from the forestry activities has been documented and valued properly to steadily guide the Sustainable Forest Management system of S. Korea.
  7. The forest resource management is intensively monitored through strong information system to reduce risks and maximize benefits.
  8. Forest products processing has been efficient to utilize the finest possible product and maximize investment returns
  9. Forest rehabilitation is taken as a top government priority where the government mobilized and coordinated the administrative power of every central, province, county/city, and village unit
  10. Forestry and non-forestry factors as success factors
  11. The Research Institute of Subtropical Forestry in China has very advanced research facilities and laboratories and very qualified research personnel. Research areas focus on the major challenges of the country and they have conducted very advanced silvicultural and tree improvement researches and obtained significant achievements.
  12. Huge potential of bamboo as commercial tree crop to satisfy the demand for various forest products. The diverse roles of Bamboo resources for the socio-economic conditions of the local people of bamboo growing provinces such as Hangzhou are noted as significant
  13. The role of research in bamboo development and utilization in PRC is substantial
  14. The possibility of integrating bamboo with other livelihoods such as poultry production is noted

Exposure Visits in Mexico

Visited Place: Fire Protection and Management Facility, Nursery at Military Campus, Low-impact logging site and Community Supported Reforestation Site, Mexico

Date: September 26 – October 3/2015

Visit Objectives, Justifications and Goal

The objectives of the visit were

  • To share lessons and experiences on REDD+ readiness implementation in Mexico.
  • To understand the institutional and policy approaches relevant in sustainable forest management.

Justifications (Why Mexico?)

In preparation for this visit, the National REDD+ Secretariat made a serious of consultations with partners like the World Bank to help us identify a REDD+ advanced country with whom we can share lessons and experiences in the area of REDD+ readiness implementation and approaches for sustainable forest management. On the basis of these discussions, Mexico was found to be a suitable destination for the planned visit for a number of reasons

  • Mexico is one of the few REDD+ advanced countries (REDD+ early movers) with a lot of lessons and experiences on the challenges and opportunities of REDD+ readiness process.
  • Mexico has a practical experience on implementation of Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES), a feasible scheme for the promotion of Sustainable Forest Management.
  • Historically, Mexico had a high rate of deforestation (up to 600,000ha/yr in the south east) and Mexico’s deforestation was driven by agricultural expansion and unsustainable fuel wood extraction. This has a parallel in Ethiopia as these divers are the current challenges in Ethiopia. On top of that, the country has got lessons (success and failures) from forest rehabilitation and development efforts.
  • Mexico is a mountainous country like Ethiopia and forest development is intrinsically linked with ensuring sustainable land and water resource management which is the case in Ethiopia.

The goal of the visit

Upon the successful completion of the visit, Visit participants

  • Will better understand/evaluate the challenges and opportunities of REDD+ Readiness implementation process and Sustainable Forest Management.
  • Will learn experiences and identify best practices that will help them guide REDD+ process at federal or regional level.





Lessons Learned

The following lessons/best practices were identified during a wrap-up discussion that visit participants had at the end of the visit. Some of these lessons/best practices can be adapted.

  • Mexico has established a system in running the forestry sector and standardized forestry activities.
  • The government (CONAFOR) has strong involvement in the national forestry development program (technical and financial support) and there is strong linkage between CONAFOR, regional sectors, military and NGOs working in forestry sector.
  • Mexico’s reforestation program is quality-oriented: objective based plantation programs, plantation programs measured by the covered area and not by number of planted seedlings and give focus on improving seedling survival through research.
  • The Military is highly engaged and contributing on forestry development of the country (modern seedling production system, vast seedling production in many nurseries all over the country).
  • Mexico’s nursery management can be a model for Ethiopia.
  • Communities own the largest (up to 70 %) forest resources and they
  • Mexico’s PES scheme benefits community and conserved ecosystems (a very good lesson to adapt).
  • Mexico has a good land use plan.
  • Mexico’s REDD+ readiness has progressed well.
  • Mexico’s REDD+ Strategy development was highly consultative and participatory (lessons that Ethiopia need to take)
  • Mexico has a comprehensive forest inventory program.
  • Inter-sectoral Coordination in REDD+ is effective (lesson to learn).


H.E. Ato Belete Tafere              Minister, Ministry of Environment and Forest

H.E Ato Dessie Dalkie              President, Southern Nations, Nationalities, Peoples Regional State

Honorable Ato Yalew Abate      Speaker, Amhara Regional Government Council

Honorable Ato Sani Redi           Vice President, Southern Nations, Nationalities, Peoples Regional State                                                  & Head, SNNPR Bureau of Agriculture

Dr Wubalem Tadesse                Director General, Ethiopia Environment and Forestry Research Institute

Ato Abraham Mashalo              Advisor to the President of Southern Nations, Nationalities, Peoples                                                    Regional State

Ato Haftu Kiros                                    Core Process Owner, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection,                                                   Regional Bureau of Agriculture, Tigray Regional State

W/O Abrehet G/Hiwot              Director, Private Forest promotion and Marketing Directorate, MEF

Dr Solomon Zewdie                  National REDD+ Pilots Coordinator, National REDD+ Secretariat, MEF

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