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Further development of a common mapping platform and methodology for local land use planning in Cameroon
Last Updated: June 8th, 2017

Deforestation in Cameroon is on the rise and is largely driven by expansion of agro-industry, slash and burn agriculture, logging, fuelwood demands, mining and infrastructure development. Competition for productive land in Cameroon has increased, notably with foreign companies seeking large tracts of land (10,000 hectares and above) for agricultural development.

The factors to be addressed during the land use planning process are complex. The EFI Common Mapping Platform (CMP) plays a central role in building commitment to a bottom up, participatory approach that brings together multiple stakeholders to foster a common understanding and agreement on land uses, institutions (rules) for future land management and activities necessary to achieve sustainable land management. It will also foster common understanding between relevant Ministries, regional delegations, civil society and private sector organisations around the data required, methodology and decision support tools to prepare local LUPs. Such an approach will meet both VGGT and REDD requirements, and ensure that it is supported by the higher levels of planning that identify and prioritise national planning targets to guide local decision making.

The common Mapping Platform (CMP) Phase 1 ran from May 2014 to Feb 2016. Under the leadership of the MINEPAT, a multi-stakeholder process was put in place involving a series of workshops with national, regional and local partners. With technical support provided by LTS and Rainbow Consult, the efforts in Phase 1 proved effective in supporting MINEPAT to build a coalition of partners. The coalition aims to develop a methodology for transparent and inclusive local Land Use Plans (LUPs), protocols for standard map layer preparation, and spatial planning tools that better address both social and environmental concerns. LUPs are a pre-requisite for responsible governance, land management, FLEGT and REDD+.

At the end of Phase 1, the MINEPAT expressly requested EFI support to further develop methods and tools for local land use planning and to test them in at least one municipality. This is an essential official endorsement of work done under Phase 1 and a necessary foundation for Phase 2.

CMP Phase 2 of the project is designed to continue EFI support to MINEPAT in implementing its 2011 LUP Law. Phase 2 builds on the foundation and successes of Phase 1 of the EFI Project and the joint initiative to develop a CMP (piloted by MINEPAT with support from EFI, LTS, WRI, RFUK, AJESH, etc.).

Evaluation of the Congo Basin Forest Fund
Last Updated: November 29th, 2016

The Congo Basin Forest Fund (CBFF) is a ten year programme, which was established in 2008 and is set to finish in 2018. However, two of the key funders have stopped funding the CBFF, thus providing the impetus for an independent evaluation.

LTS International Limited (LTS) has been contracted to provide a near terminal evaluation of the CBFF. The ToR calls for background papers on the performance of the portfolio of CBFF projects (the Portfolio Performance Review; PPR) and the performance of the CBFF programme governance and implementation (the Organisation and Management Performance Review; OMPR) and a primary data collection and analysis component of the evaluation (the Case Studies Report). The findings from these background papers will provide the basis for the Draft and Final Evaluation Reports, which will inform decision making at the executive level (the donors, CBFF Governing Council; GC, AfDB Board, etc.) and to ensure accountability and lesson learning at the project level (for the CBFF Secretariat / OSAN) and implementing partners/project grantees).

Image credits to MONUSCO

Multi Stakeholder Forestry Programme
Last Updated: July 14th, 2016

The Multi-stakeholder Forestry Programme (MSFP) builds on the achievements of over 20 years of forestry work by the Government of Nepal, supported by the UK, Switzerland and Finland. Community forestry has delivered significant impacts in reducing poverty and in building the capacity of community forest user groups, Government, and non-state actors to improve the sustainability of forest management.

The objective of this assignment is to produce two synthesis papers. The first summarising lessons learnt about the impacts of DFID’s Multi Stakeholder Forestry Programme in Nepal (the Impacts Paper), and the second to assess the effectiveness of the MSFP programme modality in delivering programme outputs and outcomes (the Modality Paper). Each paper is to be no more than ten pages in length and will be complemented by a two page summary paper.

The papers will be used to inform DFID’s Project Completion Report of MSFP. It will also be used to share the experience of MSFP with DFID Advisers, DFID Senior Management and, where appropriate, with the international forestry community. The lessons presented in the papers will be of wider relevance to DFID programming in Nepal and beyond.

Background Paper and Analysis of Country Data to Support Development of Comprehensive Landscape Methodological Approach
Last Updated: July 13th, 2016

The BioCarbon Fund Initiative for Sustainable Forest Landscapes (ISFL) seeks to promote reduced greenhouse gas emissions from land-use. The Initiative will support reducing deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD+), increasing sustainable agriculture, and smarter land-use planning, policies and practices. ISFL is currently operating in Colombia, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Zambia. Contributors to the ISFL include Germany, Norway, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.

ISFL designs programmes that focus on an integrated approach to the entire landscape with the ultimate goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and producing co-benefits such as improvements to livelihoods or agricultural productivity. For example, an ISFL programme could coordinate efforts in sustainable agricultural production projects, agro-forestry schemes, assisted natural regeneration, energy projects, water management, and REDD+ to align objectives and maximise impacts in the jurisdiction. Ultimately, jurisdictions that implement these measures are expected to generate emission reductions that can be purchased by ISFL through a results-based financing mechanism.

This project will produce a background document that will support future discussions on the development of a comprehensive landscape methodological approach. The document will: (i) describe and analyse the IPCC guidelines to ensure that ISFL Contributors have a common understanding of the guidelines and the decisions required to build the ISFL methodological approach and (ii) provide an analysis of available relevant data in ISFL countries. As part of this analysis, an understanding of the quality of data sets will also be ascertained.

LTS is leading the project, from a technical and management perspective, deploying a multi-disciplinary team of experts. The keys tasks include:

  • Provide a description of the key concepts in the IPCC guidelines to ensure that ISFL Contributors have a common understanding of the IPCC
  • Provide an analysis of available historic relevant data in ISFL programme countries
  • Identify key decisions and options going forward
  • Present and explain the results of the first three tasks to the ISFL Contributors

The main outputs include a concise background report, written for non-technical experts, and supported by evidence (in annexes).

GROW: Community Oil Palm Outgrower Scheme Operational Model and Financial Plan Development
Last Updated: July 13th, 2016

GROW is a private sector development initiative operating in Liberia to promote pro-poor economic growth and stability through partnerships with the private sector. Its objective is substantially increased incomes and employment opportunities for a large number of poor women, men and youth, created through agricultural market system change.

As documented in GROW’s Market System Analysis, the oil palm sector is expected to be of vital importance to Liberia. The Liberian oil palm sector is dominated by multinational oil palm producers that have been granted significant concessions by the Government of Liberia (GoL). In the Concession Agreements, the GoL has committed itself to raising development finance to establish outgrower schemes. However, little progress has been made in promoting investment and raising finance for community oil palm outgrower schemes since the four large international concessions began operations in Liberia in 2010 (Golden Veroleum Liberia, Sime Darby Plantation Liberia, Equatorial Palm Oil and Maryland Oil Palm Plantation). This is a systemic constraint to smallholder farmers benefiting from growth in Liberia’s oil palm industry. As a result, this assignment is focused on developing a robust Oil Palm Outgrower Scheme Operational Model and Financial Plan that takes into account Liberia’s unique cultural and land tenure context. The output will be informed by best practice and lessons learned from oil palm outgrower schemes in different parts of the world, particularly in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Africa.

Formulation of the Future Cooperation in the Kenyan Forestry Sector
Last Updated: June 30th, 2016

The purpose of the assignment is to design the future Finnish-Kenyan cooperation in the field of forest sector development. This is a continuation of the long collaboration of more than 25 years that the Government of the Kenya and the Government of Finland have had in forest sector development. The most recent collaboration was the 2007-2016 bilateral program “Miti Mingi Maisha Bora – Support to Forest Sector Reform (MMMB)” which is aiming for a “a reduction in poverty through ensuring that the forest sector contributes effectively and sustainably to improving the lives of the poor, restoring the environment, and aiding the economic recovery and growth of Kenya, within the context of Vision 2030.”

The assignment consists of two phases; identification and formulation. During the Identification Phase (May – July), LTS is involved in analysis of different needs and opportunities in the forestry sector. 2 – 3 Concept Notes will be prepared describing different proposals for future cooperation in the Kenyan forestry sector. The concept notes will present clearly different, realistic project alternatives in terms of project approach, strategy and modality. The notes will provide the competent authorities within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland (MFA) and the Government of Kenya an analytical base for decisions on the future cooperation’s strategic scope and approach.

Authorities will analyse the Concept Notes and choose one for development into the programme for cooperation in Kenyan forestry sector. The process to achieve this will involve country missions where interviews with forest actors in Kenya, group discussion and stakeholders’ workshops will be organised. During the Formulation Phase (August – September), LTS will be involved in developing the chosen Concept Note into a draft programme document, which will be submitted to MFA.

The final output of the study was the production of the “Review of Governance of the Forest Sector in Kenya Report”.

Photo credit: Michael Gachanja

Review of Governance of the Forest Sector in Kenya
Last Updated: January 1st, 2016

LTS conducted a study between February and May 2016 for Kenya Forest Service to provide a clear picture on how governance aspects of the forest sector agenda have taken shape since a similar study was carried out in 2011. Kenya’s forest sector has been going through reforms since 2007 when the Forests Act (2005) was enacted. The Government of Finland and the Government of Kenya (GoK) have supported the reform process through the “Miti Mingi Maisha Bora (MMMB) – Support to Forest Sector Reform in Kenya” Programme, 2009-2016.

In 2011, MMMB supported a study on governance in the forest sector. The study was organised along five major building blocks of good forest governance as defined by the World Bank’s 2009 “Roots for Good Forest Outcomes: An Analytical Framework for Governance Reforms”. The building blocks include: (i) transparency, accountability, and public participation; (ii) stability of forest institutions and conflict management; (iii) quality of forest administration; (iv) coherence of forest legislation and rule of law; and (v) economic efficiency, equity and incentives. The 2011 governance study was presented in the form of a “Strategy Note for Forest Governance Reform in Kenya”.

Based on the findings of the 2011 review, a “traffic” trend analysis was undertaken to determine the directional trend in forest sector governance. The aim of this analysis was to identify key areas where changes, positive or negative, have taken place. Outcomes associated with the changes were also analysed and, based on the assessment, actions were identified and proposed to move the forest sector reform process forward .

Photo credit: Michael Gachanja.

Sustainable Forest and Biodiversity Management in the Heart of Borneo
Last Updated: October 16th, 2015

The Heart of Borneo region (HOB) covering about primary 22 million hectares comprises one-third of the island of Borneo, has been identified as the focus of an international conservation agreement with the Governments of Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei Darussalam. The HOB region holds an estimated 6 percent of global biodiversity, primarily in its tropical rainforests, and provides ecosystem services for 12 million local and indigenous people. Despite its importance, current deforestation rates average 3.2 percent per annum and one third of the islands forest have been lost in the last few decades.

The effectiveness and long-term conservation of HOB region requires the full support of communities and local authorities, as well as self-financing resources. The Government of Indonesia wishes to pilot an incentive based payment for ecosystem services (PES) financing scheme for forestry and biodiversity management. Other incentives include the integration, sequestration and financing by Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+), renewable energy from micro hydro power plant, local water supply and ecotourism development.

LTS’ role as the Project Management Consultant (PMC) is designed to assist the GoI deliver the HOB initiative through three inter-related outputs:

  • Output 1. Strengthen capacity and institutions for sustainable forest and biodiversity management
  • Output 2. Exercise the REDD+ implementation at local level
  • Output 3. Establish pilot area for PES and sustainable financing schemes for forest and biodiversity management

LTS works closely with the GoI Project National Coordinator and Project Field Coordinator to deliver, commission and supervise: (i) capacity building related to sustainable forest and biodiversity management in Nunukan, Malinau, Kapuas Hulu and Melawi districts; and (ii) development of one or more pilot model(s) for REDD+ and PES within the community forest in the Forest Management Unit (FMU) of the District of Kapuas Hulu and District of Malinau.

Scoping Study for Biomass Partnership Fund
Last Updated: September 30th, 2015

The Sustainable Biomass Partnership (SBP) is an industry-led initiative formed in 2013 by major European utilities that use biomass, mostly in the form of wood pellets, in large thermal power plants. The partnership includes seven critical market players using woody biomass for large scale heat and power generation in the European Union:

A key objective of the partnership is: “To promote enhanced sustainable forest management and greater uptake of existing efficient and internationally recognised, third party verified forest certification schemes in key wood baskets”. SBP recognises the credibility of existing forest certification schemes (FSC/PEFC) and does not wish to compete with or replicate them.

A longer term aim of the SBP is to help projects that are working to support sustainable forest management and to increase the uptake of FSC and PEFC certification in key wood baskets. In addition, a condition of the SBP Standard is for organisations to engage in partnerships in areas from which biomass is obtained.

The SBP board commissioned LTS International to undertake a scoping study to “investigate options for a Sustainable Biomass Partnership Fund to support the uptake of certified forests in biomass supply baskets”. The key aims of the scoping study is as follows:

Identify the likely range of projects that could be funded based on comparative projects and projects currently being implemented or proposed in biomass supply baskets.
Understand most effective approach to administer the fund to ensure its objectives are met.
Explore opportunities for co-funding and co-operation with other funders.

This scoping study primary focus is the Southeast US supply chain basket. The Baltics, Iberia, and Canada are also considered.
Services provided by LTS International Ltd.
LTS has been contracted to undertake this desk-based scoping study to review options for consideration in the development of a SBP Fund.

The objective of an SBP fund would be to increase forest certification and promote Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) in biomass supply baskets.

The study included telephone and skype interviews with a number of key informants and follow up on-line research. The study also draws on the experience of LTS in managing funds with similar objectives to the SBP over the last 10 years. LTS is providing key-technical advice to recommend options for the fund structure, objectives, governance and financing mechanism. The study also includes a review of current and recent projects which overlap with the SBP fund both in SE US and other areas; identifying opportunities for collaborative and co-funding opportunities..

Bamboo Sector Competitiveness Study – Agronomy Overview
Last Updated: July 13th, 2015

LTS is provided Bamboo agronomy consultancy services to DFID’s Business Innovation Facility (BIF) in Myanmar to complete a Bamboo Sector Competitiveness Study (2015). Myanmar has the third largest stock of bamboo in the world but the resource value is largely underestimated due to the lack of awareness of its potential as a processed commodity for export and the priority given by the Government, and investors, to exploit natural resources (e.g.: teak, oil and gas), or to develop industrial plantations such as rubber and palm oil involving the acquisition (through concession) and clearance of land. The study analysed Myanmar’s competitive advantage on the international market for high-value addition processed and manufactured bamboo and how different business models could contribute to poverty reduction and to what extent.

Service areas:
climate change