The event

A critical part of the COP21 Paris agreement will be the protection of forests and climate-smart land use. This could represent up to a third of globally achievable climate mitigation potential by 2030.

This UNFCCC COP21 side-event is an opportunity for the EU to illustrate its past actions and outline future commitments towards combatting tropical deforestation, in partnership with Member States and tropical forest countries. The event will also see the release of an EU brochure on REDD+ financing. 

The EU features among the top supporters of Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation in developing countries (REDD+). Since 2006, the EU has contributed about 30% of total global finance dedicated to the protection of tropical forests. This has supported tropical forest countries to generate concrete emission reductions in the forest sector while respecting robust socio-environmental safeguards.

Beyond sustained finance and technical assistance, the EU will provide unprecedented access to the best available datasets from the EU Copernicus Programme for earth observation. It will also explore EU-wide options to ensure a coherent and holistic policy approach to tackling deforestation, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals, the 2014 New York Declaration on Forests, the Aichi Biodiversity Targets and ambitious Intended Nationally Determined Contributions.

With the help and good will of the international community, including leading countries, civil society, investors and companies, the EU trusts that ending and reversing the loss of forests is within the reach of our generation.




  • Richard Wakeford, University Birmingham City, Moderator

Opening remarks

  • Artur Runge-Metzger, Director International and Climate Strategy, DG Climate Action, European Commission

Introduction by the COP21 presidency and launch of the EU REDD+ brochure

  • Anne-Marie Descôtes, Director General for Globalisation, Development and Partnerships, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, France

Learning from the REDD Early Movers experience, moving forward together

  • Ingrid-Gabriela Hoven, Director General, BMZ, Germany

Combatting deforestation in Colombia, sharing REDD Early Movers experience

  • Rodrigo Suarez, Director Climate Change, Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development, Colombia

Supporting REDD+ together with REDD+ Partners

  • Ibrahim Thiaw, Deputy Executive Director, UNEP, and Assistant-Secretary-General of the United Nations

Forest and Landscape Finance: working with the private sector

  • James Close, Director Climate Change, World Bank

EU/ESA to provide unprecedented tools for tracking REDD+ impacts

  • Stephen Briggs, Senior Advisor, Earth Observation, European Space Agency

Exploring EU-wide options to ensure a coherent and holistic policy approach to tackling deforestation

  • Sir David King, Special Representative for Climate Change, United Kingdom

Partner interventions

  • Yetti Rusli, Executive Director, National Council on Climate Change, Indonesia
  • Giovanna Valverde Stark, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Costa Rica
  • Victor Kabengele Wa Kadilu, National REDD+ Coordinator, DRC
  • Lina Barrera, Senior Direct for International Policy, Conservation International

Closing remarks

  • Peter Graham, Head of the Forest and Climate Programme, WWF

Download the event flyer

Key materials and presentations



Photo gallery

Forests, Climate and People: EU support to combat tropical deforestation

More information

Background materials

Addressing the challenges of deforestation and forest degradation to tackle climate change and biodiversity loss - Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions

Briefing note by the EU REDD Facility and Proforest: Working with the private sector on REDD+ (FR ES)

Briefing note by the EU REDD Facility and ProforestLinking FLEGT and REDD+ (FR ES)

Study by DG Environment: The impact of EU consumption on deforestation