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Civil society, decision makers and the scientific community consider that it is necessary to include local people's participation in measuring, reporting and verifying (MRV) carbon stocks. This participatory approach to MRV (PMRV) is a form of empowerment, and could reduce costs and increase accuracy of carbon emission estimates at the national level.
We feel there is something missing in this story.
By contributing to MRV, forest-dependent villagers are expected to provide inputs, take part in decisions related to land management and benefit from financial incentives.
Why should local people participate in an activity alien from their daily activities? Do they have the time and interest? What direct benefit will they get from measuring tree diameters and monitoring forest changes? How do we ensure that participation will continue in the longer term? What happens to the data once it is collected? How do we communicate data to national levels? What can we learn from existing information flows so we do not re-invent the wheel? What should be the local people's role in PMRV?
Our PMRV study tries to answer some of these questions.