The World Bank Land and Poverty Conference Report – 2014, “Integrating Land Governance into the Post-2015 Agenda: Harnessing Synergies for Implementation and Monitoring Impact”
The “World Bank Land and Poverty Conference” was held at the World Bank headquarters in Washington DC from the 24th – 27th March. The conference was attended by over 500 participants from national and international organizations spanning across developed and developing countries.
The Land and Poverty Conference had four plenary and parallel sessions. The plenary sessions featured themes ranging from land and agriculture related investment, natural resources management to partnerships in developing countries. Research in land investment, especially agroforestry carbon mitigation, been aligned to my dissertation, prompted the interest in the parallel session on investment. Within this session, case studies and empirical results on community land rights, benefits of sustainable practices as well as data collection and analysis were presented. There was a consensus that the success of agroforestry with payment for ecosystem services (PES) to rural communities to attain the triple win-win benefits (carbon stocks, development benefits, and climate resilience) is based on security of tenure or rights. The natural resources management session focused on community land rights, forestry carbon stock and emission mitigation opportunities provided by reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation – plus (REDD+) and the voluntary and compliance carbon market. Results presented suggested that the opportunity cost of forest conservation may be quite low, while measures (e.g. efficient cooking stove) for forestry protection with eligibility for REDD+ and other carbon markets may contribute substantially to rural livelihood in sub-Saharan African.
My (poster) presentation provided an avenue to discuss novel benefits of forestry with PES observed in rural Kenya. The information symmetry and asset formation component (cash-flow) of forestry with PES may ease credit constraints and/or give rise to favorable interest rates due to the availability of eligible collateral and the value chain of PES. One of the conclusions reached was that such “indirect” benefits, if widely observed, may influence the outcome of agroforestry cost benefit analysis (CBA). Overall the conference provided an adequate overview of the challenges and prospects of rural agriculture investment, particularly advocating for national land right and tenure system to promote rural sustainable agriculture development.