The Letter of Intent (LOI) between the Government of Gabon and CAFI establishes a partnership to implement the National Investment Framework of Gabon. The LOI is signed by Gabon Minister of Economy, Norway’s Minister of Climate and the Environment and the Multi Partner Trust Fund Office of UNDP. A ceremony was held in Paris on 27 June 2017, and highlighted the ways in which the LOI will help the country deliver on its forthcoming Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) under the Paris Agreement.
The LOI sets out the respective obligations of the parties within this partnership. Gabon commits to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions from forests. As will be reflected in its forthcoming NDC to UNFCCC, Gabon aims to reduce gross emissions by 50% below 2005 level by 2025, which implies a reduction of more than 50% in the forest sector. CAFI commits to mobilise and secure funding to support Gabon in implementing its National Investment Framework and thus achieve these reductions.
The three objectives in the LOI, below, are in line with Gabon's National Investment Framework. Each objective is associated with time-bound milestones, whose independent verification will trigger the second tranche of disbursement. Reports on all milestones will be regularly updated on the website www.pnatgabon.na
Develop, adopt and implement, in a transparent and participatory manner, a national land use plan that organizes and optimizes the use of land and forest resources by the various national economic sectors to reduce the impact thereof on forests, reduce conflicts and promote sustainable development at national and local level. The plan will be based on the principles of non-conversion of HCS/HCV forests, limited and carbon-neutral conversion of non-HCS/HCV forest, reduced area under logging concessions, lower emissions from logging operations and rural activities and the respect of customary land tenure.
A first milestone to be reached by December 2017 is Gabon's signature of the Marrakech Declaration on sustainable palm oil production under the African Palm Oil Initiative. Four milestones are to be reached by June 2018, bearing on:
Four additional milestones to be reached by June 2019 relate to long-term cap on carbon-neutral conversion of non-HCS/HCV forests and report on its compliance, reports on the consultation process for land use planning and on mapping land-use suitability for agriculture, mining, conservation, climate vulnerability and sustainable natural resource exploitation.
The final, 2021 milestone is the adoption and implementation of the National Land-Use Plan.
Establish a fully operational National Natural Resources and Forestry Observation System (NNRFOS) to (i) develop a better understanding of biodiversity and follow the impacts if climate change; ii) estimate carbon stocks and GHG flows and model how forests behave under climate and land-use change; (iii) support the implementation of the NLUP as well as monitoring and strengthening the sectoral effects on forestry, agriculture and infrastructure to reduce deforestation and forest degradation; and (iv) track, monitor and control the implementation of forest management, illegal logging, mining activities and agricultural development.
Here the first 2018 milestones relate to the design of the NNRFOS and a methodology to monitor the carbon neutrality of conversion of non-HCS/HVC forest. By June 2019, submission of a Biennal Update Report, reports on monitoring of economic activities and law enforcement action, and mapping of 29% of villages are expected.
The final milestone in 2021 is for the NNRFOS to be fully operational and reporting to the UNFCCC, sustainable beyond CAFI funding and information made publicly available.
Continue to build on various efforts to maintain carbon sequestration by forests, reduce emissions related to forest degradation and improve inclusive forest governance.
A first, December 217 milestone calls for participation of civil society and the private sector in the work of the National land use planning commission. An intermediary 2018 milestone seeks to Establishment of a joint M&E framework for relevant international development assistance, while five 2019 milestones relate to: