Guyana REDD+ Model and Amerindian Rights
Guyana’s REDD+ model features the placement of almost all of the country’s rainforest under long-term protection in return for monetary incentives that will be used to move the country along a low carbon development trajectory. It is a model of forestry preservation and sustainable development that the Government of Guyana is developing in partnership with the Government of Norway. This model of development is part of the global climate change mitigation scheme, Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation plus (REDD+). REDD+ is a series of initiatives focused on/in developing countries seeking to diminish carbon dioxide emissions caused by deforestation and degradation, processes recognized as being one of the leading causes of climate change. It aims to dramatically reduce these emissions by creating an incentive mechanism that will pay developing countries to halt destructive processes that lead to deforestation and degradation. Guyana’s REDD+ model has significant implications for Amerindians who occupy the forested regions of Guyana, where most REDD+ related activities are scheduled to take place. Although this model is developing in a context where the legal and political regime governing Amerindians is weak, the treatment of Amerindians in REDD+ development leaves much to be desired in terms of both recognition and protection of important human rights. This Thesis reviews Guyana’s pioneering REDD+ model to show that it is failing to safeguard Amerindian rights recognized under international human rights law. Within the framework of the law, it argues that Guyana’s actions are contrary to its international obligations regarding indigenous peoples. Appropriate measures that should be adopted by Guyana to safeguard Amerindian rights are explored and proposed in this thesis. Possible measures that can be adopted by Norway, the World Bank, and the international community to motivate Guyana to undertake reforms are also examined.
DegreeMaster of Laws (LL.M.)
CommitteePoitras, Marilyn; Phillipson, Matrin; Leane, Geoffrey
Copyright DateMarch 2013
Amerindian Rights- Self-determination, Land rights, Participation and FPIC
UNDRIP, ILO Convention No. 169