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Implementing REDD+ programs involves providing sufficient incentives to land users and requires a supportive policy, legal and institutional environment. The lessons from Community-based natural resources management (CBNRM) in the miombo ecoregion provide a basis on which REDD+ in dry-land forests can build. While there has been a general positive trend in the development of supportive policies at regional level, individual countries are at different stages of a policy continuum.
In a region where poverty is high and is also a key driver of land use change, REDD+ mechanisms need to be pro-poor, explicitly addressing and building the assets and capability of the poorest households at policy level and in practice. They also need to pay for the value of land uses that the poor could have otherwise pursued in the absence of REDD+ as well as the costs of facilitating the implementation of REDD+ in environments where forest resources are often jointly owned or managed by communities.
The Program on Forests (PROFOR) supported a research project in the miombo ecoregion to address these and other issues that a REDD program in the region would be confronted with. Three country case studies covering Zambia, Mozambique and Namibia were used to draw lessons from CBNRM that could inform pro-poor REDD as well as providing the likely opportunity costs of REDD+. The study draws on well - documented experiences of CBNRM and wide consultations undertaken by country experts during the study.