THE ROYAL GOVERNMENT OF CAMBODIA
and the Forestry Administration, along withCommunity Forestry International and TerraGlobal Capital, have designed the first Cambo-dian REDD (Reducing Emissions from Defor-estation and Degradation) carbon offset creditproject. The project involves thirteen commu-nity forestry (CF) groups, comprised of fifty-eight villages, which protect 67,783 hectares of forestland in the northwestern province of Oddar Meanchey. This initiative will be one of the first to use a new methodology for submis-sion under the Voluntary Carbon Standard(VCS), combined with the Climate Communityand Biodiversity Alliance (CCBA) standards. Itis expected to sequester 7.1 million metric tonsof CO2 over thirty years
, while reducingpoverty among approximately ten thousandparticipating households, thereby demonstrat-ing how developing countries can generate in-come from the carbon markets for the ruralpoor and positively impact climate change.
Why was Oddar Meanchey selected?
OddarMeanchey Province provides an ideal site for de-veloping a REDD project. The province’s forestshave been under intense pressure from com-mercial and illegal loggers, forest fire, economicland concessions and encroachment, losing 2.1percent of its forests each year from 2002 to2006. A growing number of communities in theprovince have been protecting the remainingnatural forests as CF areas, including some of the largest community forests in the country.REDD project sites include larger tracts of healthy closed-canopy forests, as well as de-graded forests suitable for restoration.
What are the expected benefits?
This projectsupports sustainable forest management andlivelihood development in Oddar MeancheyProvince by providing financing through car-bon credits generated through forest protection.The REDD strategy not only assists rural peopleto gain legal tenure rights over local forests, italso creates a thirty-year income stream thatwill significantly enhance household liveli-hoods and natural resource management ca-pacity. The project seeks to retain and increasecarbon stocks in these areas, enhancing the hy-drology in the upland watersheds of the TonleSap Basin, as well as conserving endangered bio-diversity. Carbon financing will be used to sup-port rural communities in developing a range of livelihood activities, including nontimber for-est product enterprises, community-based eco-tourism infrastructure, and water resourcedevelopment. Participating forest communitieswill work with the Forestry Administration andcommune, district, and provincial governmentto formulate long-term plans for sustainablenatural resource management to foster eco-nomic growth.
What is the commitment of the government of Cambodia?
In May 2008, the project was of-ficially endorsed by Samdech Prime MinisterHun Sen through Sar Chor Nor No. 699. Theguiding principles ensure that carbon revenuesare used to (1) improve forest quality, (2) pro-vide maximum benefits to local communitiesthat participate in project activities, and (3)identify new REDD projects in Cambodia. TheSar Chor Nor No. 699 confirms the high-levelcommitment of the Royal Government of Cam-bodia to make the project a success and use itsrevenues effectively. The success of the OddarMeanchey project will open the door for long-
E X E C U T I V E S U M M A R Y
1. This is subject to change upon comments from VCS-accredited verifiers.