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Forest in the Republic of Congo

Realising value from standing forest through carbon credits

In the Blue Zone at COP21 in Paris in December 2015, the Government of the Republic of Congo (Brazzaville), carbon partner and expert Terra Global Capital, and Olam Wood Products subsidiary, Congolaise Industrielle des Bois (CIB), outlined the country’s advancement toward implementing REDD+*, including its readiness process.

CIB manages the world’s largest contiguous FSC® certified tropical forestry concession (1.3 million hectares) in the Republic of Congo**. It is also supporting the Congolese Government in developing its Emission Reductions Programme to be submitted to the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility’s (FCPF) Carbon Fund, of which the World Bank is a trustee.

As one of only two countries leading with a Public Private Partnership, the programme was selected into the FCPF’s Carbon Fund Pipeline in June 2014 and received US$650,000 funding to support the full development of an Emission Reductions Programme. This will tackle the root causes of forest degradation in the Republic of Congo, conserving standing forest as carbon sinks and ensuring that impacts on the forest cover are reduced.

Once the emission reductions have been verified, the Carbon Fund would purchase up to 11.7MtCO2e in carbon credits if an Emission Reduction Purchase Agreement (ERPA) is signed.  This equates to taking some 500,000 cars off the road between 2017 and 2022.

The Emission Reductions Programme in the northern area of the Republic of Congo will encompass an area of 12.35 million hectares (in the two northernmost provinces of the country – Sangha and Likouala) with 97% forest cover and 12 timber concessions. Taking a landscape approach, and in consultation with forest-dependent communities and indigenous peoples and the private sector, actions will include:

Cocoa nursery in the Republic of Congo

Cocoa nursery in the Republic of Congo

  • Advancing sustainable forest management in all industrial concessions through reduced impact logging techniques, (ii) new protected areas, and (iii) an increase in the number of certified concessions
  • Encouraging sedentary agriculture over slash and burn techniques, through reviving cocoa cultivation on already degraded land and supporting smallholders with profitable and productive crops
  • Increasing forest conservation areas and better land use planning; limiting the impacts of palm oil plantations in secondary/degraded forests and developing village palm to also encourage sedentary agriculture
  • Promoting ‘green mining’ by working with extractive industries to reduce their net impact on forests.

* License numbers: CIB Kabo – FSC-C128941; CIB Pokola – FSC-C014998; CIB Loundoungo – FSC-C104637.

** REDD Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation

Next section: Progress on Olam’s Climate Change Goals