A number of developing countries have committed to reduce greenhouse gases and to participate in international REDD (Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) programs to cease deforestation and reshape their economies as “low carbon” economies. Environmental nongovernment organisations (NGOs) and Western donors argue this will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect biodiversity. The REDD programs will have the opposite effect. It will impoverish those economies. The related calls by environmentalists to have greater forest areas classified as protected areas is also likely to reduce both biodiversity and the economic welfare of local people. In this report, REDD programs proposed for Indonesia are reviewed as a case study. Experience with the economic and environmental impacts of national parks in Indonesia is also reviewed. The results indicate these strategies will reduce economic growth in Indonesia and exacerbate the negative environmental impacts, which are the general result of mismanagement of protected areas in Indonesia.
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