REDD is often seen as a way-out for industrialized countries in the global North to continue polluting in spite of the climate crisis. Consequently, REDD has increased the challenges for communities living next to polluting industries, as their struggles against environmental injustice and environmental racism intensify. In addition, REDD has also increased conflicts in tropical forest regions where it is being implemented. REDD projects and programs are aimed at forest-dependent communities who have always protected forests and are now blamed for deforestation. Thus, they are considered a threat in the sense that their activities might release carbon stored in the forest. REDD for communities in practice results in restrictions on their agriculture inside the forest, and on traditional activities like hunting, fishing and collection of non-timber forest products. REDD promoters argue these restrictions are needed to better “protect” the forest carbon, however communities lose control and people’s cohesion and culture are heavily affected. This field research from Brazil and Indonesia is based on conversations and work with Indigenous and forest-dwelling communities impacted by REDD projects and demonstrates how their understanding of forests is complex and undermined by REDD projects.