Mapping of carbon stocks and their modelling and conservation by carbon payments in the forest belt of the DR Congo
As of: April 2021
The humid forests of the Congo Basin are one of the most important carbon sinks on our planet. The demographic development and economic growth of the DR Congo is threatening to massively increase the present low rate of deforestation. The project therefore supported a system for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+). This counteracted the accelerated deforestation, assigning a value to the forests and their ecosystem services that goes beyond the usual uses such as a source of timber or potential agricultural land. The establishment of a national REDD+ mechanism was also supported, as well as the setup of a corresponding REDD unit to implement the REDD+ programme. Among other approaches, laser remote sensing data was used to map the carbon content of the forests. The project also developed functional structures for sharing the benefits of the carbon payments and set them up as model structures together with its partners.
State of implementation/results
- Project completed.
- The national biomass map was presented to all partners and stakeholders in the national REDD+ process. Methodology, model development of the map and biomass estimates were presented by DIAF, OSFAC and UCLA.
- Employees of partner DDD participated in a workshop on "Accounting for Reductions and Absorption of Carbon Emissions through REDD+ activities" in Bangkok (Thailand).
- A working meeting took place in Kinshasa in the framework of a technical workshop for the determination of forest biomass to prepare the first half-yearly report (FBUR) on the greenhouse gas inventory related to land use, change and forestry (LULUCF)
- The project supported the further academic education of five Congolese students through the "Russell E. Train Education for Nature" programme (WWF US). With the help of this support, one student was able to successfully complete his doctorate, two other students received their Master of Science.
- The communities with PES contracts received payments performance based payments for protecting areas and the work done to reforest with fruit trees. Farmers Clubs support individual farmers in learning and applying new agricultural techniques on model farms.
- Concepts of "benefit sharing" via PES contracts with municipalities have been integrated into ERP and are expected to be applied in ERP May Ndombe Province.
- With the timber producer SOGENAC a study on the application of "Reduced Impact Logging RIL" methods was started. The aim of the pilot study is to demonstrate the economic benefits of the RIL method focused on the reduction of CO2 within the framework of the ERP Mai Ndombe and thus to increase interest among forest concessionaires.
- The World Bank approved the ERPD on 16 December 2016, making it the first project of its kind on the African continent and one of the first REDD+ Phase three projects in the disbursement phase worldwide with a potential disbursement volume by the World Bank of US$ 70 million.
- PES payments were made in some municipalities. Payments on PES to municipalities were accompanied by training on new agricultural techniques in so-called Farmers Clubs to further raise awareness.
- The implementation of RIL practices to reduce CO2 emissions during harvesting was investigated. The results show a financial gain especially through fuel savings, the CO2 saving effect is strongly weather dependent.
- HCVFs were included in the development and use plans in cooperation with the municipalities.