Cameroon has approximately 20 million hectares of forest, just over 40% of the total land area. The average deforestation rate has risen in recent decades from 0.9% between 1990 and 2000 to 1.1% between 2010 and 2015. There is increasing international and national pressure on forests from mineral extraction, biofuel crops, infrastructure development and agricultural expansion.
Drivers of deforestation and degradation
Cameroon’s Emission Reductions Program Idea Note (ER-PIN) outlines a number of planned and unplanned deforestation drivers, agents and underlying causes of deforestation in the Emission Reductions (ER) Program area.
Planned deforestation drivers include:
- Government agricultural programmes
- Agro-industry expansion of crops including palm oil and rubber
- Infrastructure developments including railways connecting mining areas to deep sea ports, hydroelectric dams and related electricity networks
- Legal mining and logging operations
Unplanned deforestation drivers include:
- Small-scale subsistence and cash crop agriculture such as cocoa
- Informal logging and mining operations
REDD+ actors and activities
The REDD+ process in Cameroon is led by the Ministry of Environment, Protection of Nature and Sustainable Development (MINEPDED). A Steering Committee was established in 2012 as the principle REDD+ decision-making body. The Ministry of Forest and Wildlife (MINFOF) is also involved in REDD+ initiatives as the agency managing the country’s forests.
Cameroon is currently in the first preparatory phase of REDD+ activities known as REDD+ readiness. The FCPF granted Cameroon USD 3.6 million in funding in 2013 to undertake REDD+ readiness activities. Cameroon plans to implement an ER Program from 2018 to 2028 located in three administrative regions in the country’s south.
The ER Program seeks to:
- Reduce greenhouse gas emissions through an integrated landscape approach
- Enable natural resource conservation and management around protected areas within the program area
- Reduce agricultural emissions while enhancing long-term livelihood, security and well-being
- Build capacity and support technology transfer
Cameroon is a Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) Country Participant and a UN-REDD Programme Partner Country. It is also a member of the Central African Forest Commission (COMIFAC).
Status of FLEGT Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA)
Cameroon has signed a VPA with the EU. The VPA entered into force in December 2011 and Cameroon and the EU are now overseeing implementation of the Agreement.
Cameroon is developing the systems needed to control, verify and license legal timber.
For more information, see the Cameroon page on the EU FLEGT Facility's website.