Avoided deforestation in Pará, Brazil
The state of Pará is an enormous area of dense vegetation, considered “extremely high” priority for conservation by the Brazilian Ministry of Environment: This is why the project is vital for the conservation of the Amazon biome. Moreover, its initiatives represent an exemplary case of carbon finance being reinvested into nondeforestation businesses.
Project standard: VCS
Located a 30 hour boat ride away from the capital Belém in the Northern Brazilian state of Pará, the project preserves nearly 90’000 hectares of the Amazon biome on Marajó Island, at the mouth of the Amazon River. Marajó is Brazil’s richest region in terms of waterways. The Marajó várzea is a critically valuable ecosystem for many species, especially noted for its many birds species.
The primary objective of the project is to avoid the unplanned deforestation of an 86’269.84 ha area within a private property owned by Ecomapuá Conservação Ltda.
Because of the project, commercial wood extraction – which has been a major cause of deforestation in the region – was banned in the project area.
Conservation activities involve the supervision of logging, which is carried out by three supervisors from within the project area communities. These are delivering periodic reports to the project owner.
In addition to conserving the rich biodiversity of the Amazon, the project aims to promote alternative sources of income for local communities and thus contribute to the sustainable development of the region. For example, full support was given to the indigenous populations to produce the açaí, a local traditional superberry. They were provided: capacity building, material, logistical and infrastructural support (specifically opening of bank account and freight of raw material), and guarantee of sale at a premium price.
Pedro, a local resident, explains: “We are now practicing permaculture. The project has given me great empowerment, as I now possess the skills, knowledge and equipment necessary to start with these activities.”
Started in 2003, the project reduces the emission of 72’338 t CO2e yearly.
Social and economic Benefits
- Infrastructure: Construction of a school building, aviaries, apiaries and fish farming tanks in the local communities.
- Social Research: Study conducted in partnership with local universities to understand the social reality of the resident riverside communities.
- Income generation: courses promoting alternative income generation in the local communities.
- Bursaries provided for three promising local students to work in the tree nursery.
- The açaí production is about to receive Organic certification, and Fairtrade will soon follow!
- Conservation of about 90’000 ha of the Amazon biome.
- Sustainable forest management: training courses in seed and sustainable açaí (local endemic fruit) production for the members of the local communities.
- Construction of a tree nursery to recover degraded land and for communities to produce seeds for sale.