PowerPoint Presentation on Shifting Cultivation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
This working paper and presentation is a short description tackling the potential that adaptation and mitigation will turn maladaptive when considering the Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) process in Dominican Republic-Congo. The report authors site this presentation as a “work in progress”. It is supported by a thorough sampling of photos and maps, and also provides a summary of the “Two contrasting views of development” and what issues play into this conversation.
The paper states that the farmers’ perspective will “eventually evolve through a progressive reduction of the fallow period, the establishment of perennials and crop rotation, and permanent settlement around roads”. This differs from the mainstream REDD+ narrative, which is summarized as “shifting cultivation landscapes will evolve through the substitution of land uses (agroforestry, conservation agriculture, perennial crops, alternative income-generating activities) for slash-and-burn based cropping systems”.
Causes of the contrast are summarized in the following key concepts: alternate land use selections are based on criteria that is not agreed upon, fire and erosion are demonized, systems and process at large temporal and geographical scales are not taken into account, and farmers aren’t trusted as rational economic agents, for example.
Excerpt from the report:
REDD+ increases its change of success if it:
- Supports a broad range of options
- Leaves farmers to choose among these options
- Values women’s labor and active participation
- Creates incentives instead of focusing on planning
- Stops demonizing or romanticizing local land-uses
- Sees beyond science and data sets and considers all parties’ common sense and experience