2020
Jun

The Rio Branco Declaration: Assessing Progress Toward a Near-Term Voluntary Deforestation Reduction Target in Subnational Jurisdictions Across the Tropics

Voluntary commitments are playing an ever-greater role in environmental governance at all scales. In the years preceding the signing of the Paris Agreement in 2015, a flurry of non-state and state actors signed on to various declarations and commitments to reduce deforestation as one globally significant climate mitigation solution. This paper focuses on the Rio Branco Declaration (RBD) and the 30 first-order subnational jurisdictions located in Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, and Peru that signed it between 2014 and 2018, committing to reduce deforestation 80% by 2020, conditional upon adequate support from the international community. We assess each study jurisdiction’s progress toward that commitment in terms of reducing deforestation, and examine a subset of the potential factors supporting or slowing progress, including the existence of commensurate targets within jurisdictions’ legal frameworks and the international financial support pledged to jurisdictions.

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