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UN Jobs: REDD+ STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT LIAISON, CAMEROON – Cameroon

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Cameroon

REDD+ STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT LIAISON, CAMEROON

WCS is leading the evaluation of a potential jurisdictional REDD+ project or program encompassing the Mbam Djerem National Park, Cameroon. By working to improve protections of community and publically managed forest lands, this landscape level project will seek to reduce the ongoing deforestation and degradation across the over 900,000 hectares of the Mbam Djerem National Park and its periphery zone, resulting in significant emission reductions. WCS is seeking a Stakeholder Engagement Liaison to lead consultations with stakeholders in the co-development of this proposed Jurisdictional REDD+ project.

Position, Location: Yaoundé, with frequent travel to field

Department, Division: Cameroon/Central Africa and Equatorial Guinea Regional Program

Reports to: WCS Cameroon Country Director

Coordinates with: Mbam Djerem NP Manager, Central Africa and Equatorial Guinea Regional Director,Global REDD+ and Forest Carbon Technical Advisor

Term: 4 months

Expected Start Date: Autumn 2022

Overview

The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) is a US-based non-governmental organization founded in 1895 that protects wildlife and wilderness by understanding critical issues, creating science-based solutions and promoting conservation actions that benefit nature and the humanity. With more than a century of experience, long-term commitments in dozens of landscapes, presence in more than 60 countries and experience in helping to establish more than 150 protected areas worldwide, WCS has accumulated biological knowledge, cultural understanding and partnerships to ensure that vibrant places, with flora and fauna, thrive together with local communities. Working with local communities and organizations, this knowledge is applied to address issues of management of species, habitats and critical ecosystems to improve the quality of life of rural poor people, whose livelihoods depend on the direct use of natural resources. WCS has been working in Cameroon since 1988 and today supports the Ministry of Wildlife and Forests in the management of three large and high biodiversity protected area landscapes across the country, including the Mbam-Djerem National Park. Created in 2000, the Mbam Djerem National Park covers about 4,200 sq km of the transition zone between the dense humid forest of the south and the drier savannas of the north. Since 2003, WCS has been working alongside the Government of Cameroon through the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife (MINFOF) providing technical and financial assistance for Park management and wildlife protection. We have been successful in establishing the Park, building the capacity of park personnel, developing basic protected area infrastructure, implementing law enforcement operations, raising awareness and conservation cooperation with local stakeholders, and promoting environmentally sound income generating activities. Despite significant achievements, the area is currently facing increasing and expanding threats both to its wildlife and the physical park integrity. Habitats are under pressure from logging (both legal and illegal), unsustainable agricultural practices, and unregulated pastoralism including both local, national, and international transhumant pastoralists, uncontrolled burning of forests and savannahs for agriculture or grazing purposes. Moreover, major infrastructure development in the landscape is expanding and increasing pressures. WCS has made a strategic decision to pursue the development of REDD+ carbon offset generation as a means to secure long-term stable financing for habitat and forest protection. WCS has secured financing to further explore and establish the feasibility of a carbon offset project in the MDNP landscape. The Mbam Djerem REDD+ Program, which if successful will be led by a yet-to-be identified the REDD Program coordinator, will first evaluate the potential for cost-effective generation of verified emissions reductions (VERs), and then prepare the studies and documentation required to have the project validated against the Verified Carbon Standard. As the Mbam Djerem Stakeholder Engagement Liaison, the position will be responsible for leading the design and implementation of the needed stakeholder engagement activites. The first set of activities is to understand the goals of the government and community carbon owners and to potentially secure an expression of their interest in partnering with WCS, and to lead initial consultations and awareness raising with potential project partners. This role will work in close coordination with the Mbam Djerem Program Director, the Cameroon Country Director, Central Africa and Equatorial Guinea Regional Carbon Expert, and the WCS Conservation Solutions Team

Position Responsibilities

The following represent an overview of the responsibilities of the Stakeholder Engagement Liaison. A more detailed description of expected otuputs is provided under “Expected outcomes and activities” below. Specific responsibilities of the Liason will include, but not limited to:

  • Develop and describe a pathway for securing government support for the proposed REDD program
  • Identify and document policy and regulation requirements that a potential REDD project would be subject to
  • Develop and implement a stakeholder engagement and collaboration approach with national and local government, and in collaboration with other WCS staff, community stakeholders in the Mbam Djerem Landscape
  • Develop a network of relationships for WCS Cameroon, government and non-governmental actors working on carbon offsetting

Modus operandi

The expert will be employed on a fixed term consultancy contract with WCS Cameroon.

DELIVERABLES

  1. An inception report including the stakeholder map and stakeholder engagement plan
  2. A series of outreach materials presented to stakeholders through consultant-led consultations
  3. A final report including 1) roadmap to engagement with government on REDD and 2) summary of views and goals of carbon owners towards REDD and carbon offsetting 3) summary of key laws and policy pertaining to carbon offset trading 4) Statement of government interest in a partnership 5) review of other non-governmental actors working on carbon in Cameroon

Qualification Requirements

EXPECTED ACTIVITIES AND OUTCOMES

  • A stakeholder map of persons and groups expected to require consultation on carbon offsetting, at both the national and landscape level
  • Develop a stakeholder engagement plan, providing such guidance on which stakeholders to engage at what stage of discussions, what is their role in a potential REDD project/program, and context around their associated institutions’ mandates/constraints/goals as it relates to carbon offsetting.
  • A set of materials, including documents and presentations, to be used to guide initial stakeholder engagement, covering topics of:
    • General principles of carbon offsetting
    • WCS’s existing and planned conservation activities in Mbam Djerem
    • Theoretical options for carbon offsetting in and around Mbam Djerem
    • WCS’s approach to Nature Based Solution project development and financing
    • Other topics where a need for awareness raising is identified through early consultations, on agreement with WCS
  • Recommendations in the form of a roadmap for the steps that a project proponent would have to get agreement from government and carbon owners on partnering on a carbon offsetting activity
  • A brief summary of the major pieces of legislation and policies that pertain to the generation and trading of carbon offsets in Cameroon.
  • A report detailing the current views about carbon offsetting, based on consultant’s converstions with stakeholders and published statements, covering questions of:
    • Views of the national government and REDD program on project nesting
    • Plans around developing jurisdictional REDD programs encompassing the Mbam Djerem landscape
    • Perceived challenges or gaps related to government’s ability to advance on REDD projects or programs
    • Views on role of REDD in achieving Nationally Determined Contributions to UNFCCC Paris climate targets (NDCs)
  • A survey of what other private sector, NGO, and international are active in REDD in Cameroon and/or Mbam Djerem, and what are their objectives/activities
  • A statement secured, formal or informal, about the current views of relevant government ministries on the potential of collaboring with WCS on carbon offsetting in Mbam Djerem.

REQUIREMENTS

  • Minimum 5 years of experience in natural resources management, conservation development management, or related field.
  • Experience in climate finance arena required, carbon accounting knowledge is a plus
  • Significant experience convening multi-stakeholder platforms with high-level involvement of Cameroon government ministries relevant to establishment of REDD crediting
  • Preferred experience in natural resources management, conservation development management, or related field.
  • Demonstrated history of high-level engagement with national government institutions that are engaged in REDD+
  • Experience designing and leading capacity building and awareness for government and community group stakeholders
  • Familiarity with REDD+ history in Cameroon and Government of Cameroon REDD+ framework development and legislation. Experience of participation in national or project-scale REDD+ in Cameroon preferred.
  • General understanding of carbon crediting processes, voluntary market mechanisms, and national and international governance processes covering forest carbon emissions, sequestration and storage.
  • willingness to travel to meet with Partners at their place of work
  • Fluent in French/ English, experience in the Mbam Djerem landscape a plus, but not required

How to apply

Interested candidates, who meet the above qualifications, skills and experience, should apply by emailing a detailed application/cover letter and CV together with the names and contact information of three references to: [email protected]

Please include “REDD+ Stakeholder Engagement Liaison, Cameroon” in the subject line of your email by August 31

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