Strategic Environmental and Social Assessment (SESA)

The Strategic Environmental and Social Assessment (SESA) is essential for both avoiding negative impacts and ensuring positive or additional REDD+ benefits, especially in terms of safe-guarding livelihood improvements and the rights of forest-dependent communities (i.e. indigenous peoples, women, etc.); promoting the conservation of the environment and biodiversity; and maintaining cultural heritage, gender balance, capacity development and good governance. For this, it is essential to identify the likely outcomes, opportunities and adverse impacts associated with implementation of strategic options before implementing REDD+.
SESA The works to be accomplished in SESA are broken into nine (9) tasks to explicitly target and easily address issues embodied in SESA.
Summary of SESA outputs

SESA Task Output
Task 1: Identifying key issues and assessment of key stakeholders Updated lists of stakeholders, inception report
Task 2: Initial description of the social and environmental situation of the forestry sector in Ethiopia baseline report
Task 3: Outline the legislative, regulatory, and policy regime legislative review of the forest sector
Task 4: Formulation of arrangements for implementation Scoping report
Task 5: Review particular institutional requirements within the REDD+ implementation framework Review of institutional requirement for REDD+ implementation
Task 6: Analysis of the possible impacts of different REDD+ strategy option scenarios Social and environmental impact assessment
TASK 7: Preparation of final SESA documents SESA report
Task 8: Present preliminary findings on Environmental & social risks and gaps Workshop and consultation report
Task 9: Enhanced and targeted stakeholder consultation Stakeholder consultation plan report

Each of the tasks will be tackled by their respective methodologies developed for them. The tasks are briefly described shortly below.
Task 1: Identifying key issues and assessment of key stakeholders
Consultations to gather views on REDD+ strategy-options and perspectives on issues in forestry, and also to identify available data and sources, will be undertaken at two levels: national and district–engaging with key relevant government ministries and agencies, private sector bodies, NGOs and civil society organizations and community. Under this task, two big issues will be addressed: key issues on environment and social and key stakeholders. The two big issues will be approached and tackled through different methodologies.
Task 1.1: Social and Environmental Key Issues Identification
Key issues in REDD+ includes social and environmental ones. The identification of key issues are associated with deforestation and forest degradation which will be based on analytical work using spatial analysis, case studies and participatory rural appraisal methods.

Figure 1: Trend Analysis Map
Key social issues to be addressed includes but not limited to population size, density, population movement, history of settlement, economic activities, ethnicity/language, social stratification, power relationships, customary values, rules, norms, beliefs and practices related to natural resources, sacred places, rituals, traditional medicine, pasturing and grazing practices, land clearing, forest resource utilization( for building purpose, for fuel use, etc.) community needs, expectations, complaints, grievances and the channel of communication with outsiders or formal institutions for notifying the same.
In the context of rural forest communities, logging and wood mill factories, commercial tree planting, indigenous institutions such as clans, kinship group/ social networks, religious or spiritual authorities, conflict resolution body (Yehager Shimagile/Jarsa Biya), mutual aid association (Idir) and work associations (Gussa/Debo, Jiggie) and others will be addressed.
Task 1.2: Key Stakeholders Identification
Stakeholders are defined as those groups that have a stake/interest/right in the forest and those that will be affected either negatively or positively by REDD+ activities. They include relevant government agencies, formal and informal forest users, private sector entities, indigenous peoples and other forest-dependent communities (FCPF, 2011). These groups (stakeholders) are identified using referring back to past stakeholder information (those captured during R-PP development) and consultation, stakeholder mapping and stakeholder analysis methods.
The stakeholders will be identified as primary and secondary stakeholders depending on their influence and importance to the REDD+ implementation. The identified stakeholders will be categorized as government, Government Forest Enterprise, civil society, private sector, donors, CBOs, Programmes and others.
Key stakeholders includes but not limited to:
• Government (MEF, Ministry of Agriculture, Institute of Biodiversity, Research Institutes, Universities etc.),
• Government Forest Enterprise (Oromia and Amhara Regions Forest Enterprises),
• Civil society (GIZ, Farm Africa, World Vision, etc.)
• CBOs (Idir, Mahiber, etc.) and others.
• Programmes (Humbo, Bale Eco-Region Sustainable Management Program, etc.) and others.
Task 2: Initial description of the social and environmental situation of the forestry sector in Ethiopia
This task has embodied two major tasks: the social and environmental tasks. The two tasks will be addressed separately as in the following:
Task 2.1 Initial description of the social situation of the forestry sector in Ethiopia
People may reside in or near the forest and affected it either positively or adversely. The effect of the community will be assessed through review of secondary data and/or participatory rural appraisal (PRA) methods. While the secondary data review reveals previously captured data and information, PRA discloses currently existing and freshly available data and information. Participatory method is an effective way to involve local people in decision-making. Issues that will be addressed in social situation analysis includes but not limited to:

• Vulnerable groups identification
• Tenure rights
• Resource use issues
• Livelihoods and labour rights issues
• Benefit-sharing scheme
• Resettlement consideration
• Ethnic diversity
• Culture
• Religion and practices
• Settlement patterns
• Infrastructure
• Community engagement and roles in forest protection and conservation (PFM, JFM, etc.) with respect to gender and age
• Culture of tree planting
• Cultural conflict resolution mechanisms
• Customary rights and others.
Task 2.2 Initial description of the environmental situation of the forestry sector in Ethiopia
Ethiopia is known to have nine (9) vegetation types. Of these, the Acacia-Commiphora woodland, the Combretum_terminalia woodland, the Dry Evergreen Afromontane Forest, the Moist Afromontane forest and the Transitional Forest includes what are termed as forests in the Current definition to be adopted.
The environmental situation of the identified vegetation types will be assessed using Trend Analysis Method. Trend analysis will be conducted to detect changes in forest condition in general. For Trend Analysis, data from WBISSP, MEF, FAO and information disclosed in IUCN on endangered and endemic species of the country, biodiversity hot spot points will be used as an input for the environmental situation analysis of the forestry. As indicated in the R-PP document, information that will be generated in the activities data (trend maps) will be also (in addition to the above ones) used for the trend analysis.
Important data captured during this stage will include but not limited to:
• Land use-land cover change
• Forest degradation
• Soil type and characteristics of the forest area
• Climatic data and information of the forest area
• Water sources of the forest area
• Forest vegetation diversity
• Forest clearance and related extent
• Forest utilization and protection condition
• Infrastructure
• Exotic species introduction
• Risk of forest fire
• Logging and others
• Pest Management
• Biodiversity degradation and loss

Task 3: Outline the legislative, regulatory, and policy regime
SESA takes place within the legal and/or policy frameworks established by individual countries and international agencies. The consulting group will exhaustively address all the environmental and related ordinance of the country and the international convention & treaties the country signatory to as well to come up with the enabling and hindering legal matters for REDD+ implementation. National (e.g. The 1995 Constitution of Ethiopia, Proclamation No. 299/2002, etc.) International (e.g. ILO 169 on indigenous and tribal populations) and regional policy frameworks including the World Bank REDD+ related policies (e.g. OP/BP 4.36-Forests, etc.) will be analysed in detail. For this, existing Database Retrieval, approaching institutions and workshop will be conducted to get relevant legislative frameworks within which REDD+ will be conveniently operating or hinder it for that matter.
Task 4: Formulation of arrangements for implementation
The tasks sought to be accomplished under this task includes:
i. Screening and assessment of site-specific environmental and social impacts;
ii. The preparation of time-bound action plans for reducing, mitigating, and/or offsetting any adverse impacts;
iii. Coordination, facilitation, monitoring the implementation of the action plans, including arrangements for the participation of relevant stakeholders in such monitoring.
iv. Monitoring the implementation of the action plans, including arrangements for the participation of relevant stakeholders in such monitoring.
This task will be done through rigorous consultation with stakeholders and secondary data review (output from the study of underlying causes of deforestation and forest degradation).
2.1.5 Task 5. Review particular institutional requirements within the REDD+ implementation framework
An over view of the institutions that has relation with REDD+ at different hierarchical levels will be assessed and presented. The institutions that will be considered in this case may include government organizations (GOs), civil society organizations (CSOs) and private sector institutions involved in forest-related activities that are relevant to REDD+. It is also well known donors and financial institutions influence the implementation of REDD+ either way. Hence, institutions will be exhaustively addressed and their contributions, roles, mandate, etc. analysed. The consulting team closely work with the REDD+ Secretariat, World Bank and others to identify and record them.
The authority and capability of institutions at different administrative levels (e.g. local, district, provincial/regional, and national), will be reviewed in relation to manage and monitor ESMF implementation. while institutional analysis describes existing institutions that involve(directly or indirectly) in the ESMF, it may recommend the establishment of new institutions, new recruitment & staffing, enactment of new acts, rules and regulations, new inter-sectoral arrangements, monitoring and maintenance arrangements, budgeting and financial support.

Figure2: Assumed Map of Institutional Arrangement for REDD+ Implementation

Task 6: Analysis of the possible impacts of different REDD+ strategy option scenarios

The REDD+ strategy options shall be assessed against the environmental and social impacts that they may induce or create during their implementations. The REDD+ strategic option will be adopted from the study of national „underlying cause of deforestation and forest degradation' which currently underway, the study done in Oromia Region on „underlying cause of deforestation and forest degradation ', the R-PP and draft national REDD+ strategy documents. These environmental and social impacts will be identified vis-a-vis the World Bank environmental and social safeguard policies, Constitution of Ethiopia, the environmental policy of Ethiopia, internationally agreements the country is signatory to and others. For each of the possible impacts REDD+ strategy options, mitigation measures will be proposed.
Explicit analyses of the social and environmental impacts (positive or adverse) of the REDD+ strategy option will help the implementation of REDD+ projects rightly. REDD+ strategic options characterizing will contribute to poverty reduction, environmental protection, socioeconomic development and the protection of traditional rights and biodiversity.
TASK 7 Preparation of final SESA documents
The report will have background of the country, baseline data, findings and results from the outlined tasks, recommendation, annexes that include consultation minutes done at different levels, pictures, and other important data captured during the delivering of the assignment. The SESA-ESMF outline will be given as in the following:
Outline of the reports:
• Brief introduction and background information on Ethiopia, REDD+, SESA
• Description of Methodology
• Strategic option for Ethiopia
• Updated lists of stakeholders that influence REDD+ implementation
• Baseline data of the study country
• Legislative review of the forest sector related to REDD+
• Reviewed institutional requirement for REDD+ implementation
• Social and environmental impact assessment findings
• Recommendations
• Annex that includes: workshop and consultation minutes, references, photos, etc.

• Brief introduction and background information on Ethiopia, REDD+, ESMF
• Description of Methodology
• Outline on technical assistance required
• Budget outline for the implementation of ESMF
• Monitoring and evaluation plan
• REDD+ grievance redress mechanism recommendation
• recommendations on ESMF and RPF
The final SESA document will use graphs, tables, charts to present the documents. Other than the written forms of repot presenting, important documents pertinent to REDD+ obtained from the SESA report producing process or from other sources will be given in hard and soft copies as available. Videos, audios, photos and maps obtained or produced or captured during the SESA process will also submitted to the Secretariat. Minutes taken during the different workshop or meeting session will be annexed to the report.
Task 8: Present preliminary findings on Environmental & social risks and gaps
Social and environmental risk and (potential) may existing at all stages of REDD+ implementation. Identifying which strategies have the most positive impact and lowest risks related to social and environmental factors, and which have the least positive impact and highest risk is very vital.
While REDD+ is expected to yield poverty reduction and biodiversity co-benefits, its mechanism design options pose several risks to socio-economic compatibility and environmental integrity.
Assessments so far revealed that governance challenges are the largest risks to REDD+ implementation. Identifying risks and gaps and communicating to stakeholders improves REDD+ implementation as it proposes mitigation measures to it. So, the preliminary findings will be presented to the stakeholders to stimulate a discussion and further enrich the document. Ahead of presenting risks and gaps to the stakeholders, the following methods will be used to identify and record environmental and social risks and gaps.

Environmental Risks and Gaps
Data collection tools will be developed and communities, key informants etc. will be made to respond to the risks and gaps they know, they experience or they guess it happens.
Secondary data will also be reviewed because policy level risks and gaps will be identified by reviewing national and regional levels ordinances (policy, legislation and regulations), financial and economic systems, R-PP document, REDD+ implementation process, REDD+ strategy and strategy options, PFM document analysis and others. Case studies done in other countries will also be reviewed and adopted to the local context to identify environmental risks and gaps.

Social Risks and Gaps
Forests are integral components of Ethiopia‟s biodiversity and ecosystems, and critical to local economies and livelihoods of the community.
Field level Social risks related to REDD+, will be assessed using participatory social risk and gaps assessment (PSRA) technique. PSRA is used to assess or estimate, in advance, the social consequences that are likely to follow from specific policy actions (including programs, and the adoption of new policies), and specific government actions (including buildings large projects, and leasing large tracts of land for resource extraction).
Key stakeholders will be called to a meeting (workshop) and brain stormed for identifying social risks and gaps related to REDD+ implementations. Prior to the meeting, triggering questions to generate important information will be prepared and posed during the meeting.

Access to forest resources for vulnerable groups: The community groups identified as vulnerable in lieu of REDD+ include settled agriculturalists, buffer zone communities, pastoralists and agro pastoralists, women fuel wood carriers, women, migrant exploiters, none cooperative members within the forest community, the poor, emerging youth, educated and unemployed etc. With some exception to some of the vulnerable groups (such as pastoralists, agro-pastoralists, buffer zone communities), there are issues that require further exploration on access to forest resource, benefit sharing mechanisms and grievance redress mechanism, among others. Gap analysis of existing bylaws and greater understanding of the traditional forest resources use systems (Godantu and Qobo) will provide lessons for negotiations and grievance redress mechanism. The description of these institutions will be documented as community based institutions to complement the implementation of REDD+ initiatives.
Migrant exploiters: These include „illegal‟ migrant who are engaged in deforestation and forest degradation. The current experience shows that the current approach is „deporting‟ these people to their origin, which is not a sustainable option. Thus, it would be important to understand the causes and effects of migration at both ends, levels of awareness and migrant exploiters livelihood context and social fabric.
Emerging, educated and unemployed youth: In forested areas emerging youth who are part of the forest community but not members to cooperatives are threat (due to livelihood activities) to the forest ecosystem. This requires innovative design of the REDD+ initiative and understanding of the context to address the interests of these groups.
Restriction of access to cooperatives: In principle, membership to the cooperatives (PFMs) is open for those who meet the criteria and understand the pros and cons. However, there are restriction of access to membership through imposing higher registration and share sales fees and potential elite capture/exclusion by clan or family membership. The WAJB in Arsi area, which is a restricted (access) forest cooperative, is a case in point, which requires renegotiation. This will be a challenge for the REDD+ projects; hence, timely exploration of the issue and understanding will enhance initiatives inclusiveness while promoting sustainable use of the forests.
Beneficiaries and Benefit Sharing Mechanisms: There exists a common understanding that non-forest timber products and the environmental services are unqualified benefits (that communities consider as granted, unlike other quantified benefits (financial)) in many of the forested areas. There are internationally accepted standards in setting benefit sharing mechanisms in REDD+, however, the SESA team will come up with a clearly articulated, and community proposed, negotiated realistic benefit sharing mechanism.
Community consultation: the consulting firm will include a summary of the community consultation findings as part of the safeguards report, which is a key dimension of the environmental and social aspects.
Traditional grievance handling committee: plays a vital role in the PFM establishment, conflict management and redressing grievances within and outside the PFM. These committees are also active in managing and preserving the forest, handling concerns on entitlements and benefit sharing arrangements. Therefore, the consulting firm will give due attention on traditional conflict management system/grievance handling mechanism of the elders.

Task 9: Enhanced and targeted stakeholder consultation
Full and effective participation of relevant stakeholders at all stages of REDD+ and project development is a critical component of good governance and important in strengthening public institutions, transparency and promoting democratic processes in REDD+ processes and implementations.
Key stakeholders at different levels (national, regional, zonal, district and Kebele) that includes private sectors or CBO or NGOs, forest or NTFP dependents, forest concessionaires or administrators and others will be consulted guided by The World Bank and UNREDD/FCPF guidelines (2012) on stakeholders engagement in REDD+ process.

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