Ethiopian forest project gets UN carbon credits
The U.N. has issued carbon credits to a reforestation project in Ethiopia, the second time tree planting has received emission reductions. The project in the village of Humbo, Ethiopia, which was approved by the U.N. almost three years ago, was last Friday awarded 73,000 carbon credits under the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) for restoring vegetation cover to degraded land.
The offsets, called temporary Certified Emissions Reductions (tCERs), were bought by the World Bank’s BioCarbon Fund, which invests in around 20 forest and land-use schemes.
“(All) revenue is being reinvested in ... paying for micro businesses such as beekeeping, livestock husbandry and the construction of a flour mill and grain storage facility, replacing traditional activities such as fuel collection, earlier the main source of income for many Humbo residents,” the World Bank said in a statement.
With credit prices treading around 1.75 euros each, near their all-time lows, sale proceeds are unlikely to top 130,000 euros ($167,300).
The issuance comes six months after the U.N. handed out a mammoth 4.1 million tCERs to the Plantar reforestation initiative in Brazil.
Under the rules of the CDM, tCERs are issued to forestry projects to account for the fact that carbon sinks are not considered permanent.
Use of the credits are banned under the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, a main source of demand for U.N.-backed offsets.
Planting trees is seen as a cheap way to slow global growth of greenhouse gas emissions and last month U.N. advisors recommended allowing projects that stop logging of trees to earn carbon credits under the CDM.
Currently, the Executive Board of the CDM has been slow to approve afforestation/reforestation projects because of the complexity in proving the scale of emissions reductions from business as usual.
Almost 90 projects in the sector are at auditing stage and beyond, 40 of which are registered by the U.N.