UNEP-WCMC Launches Carbon and Co-benefits Website

14 May 2010: The UN Environment Programme-World Conservation Monitoring Center (UNEP-WCMC), with support from the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN), has launched a new website highlighting the potential for actions on maintaining natural carbon stocks to generate co-benefits, i.e. that are additional to climate change mitigation effects.

The maintenance and enhancement of natural carbon stocks, for example through reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD), produces: ecosystem co-benefits, which include biodiversity conservation and ecosystem services; and "social" co-benefits that derive from the mechanisms used and the social and political changes needed to implement them, such as clarification of land tenure and enhanced participation in decision making.

The new UNEP-WCMC website demonstrates the utility of spatial analyses to assist decision makers in identifying areas where high carbon, high biodiversity priority and ecosystem service values overlap, in order to secure co-benefits. It showcases UNEP-WCMC's recent work with in-country partners on developing such analyses and includes an interactive mapping tool that allows users to explore the spatial relationships between carbon and co-benefits. [The Website]