Under the umbrella of the OFLP, environmentally-friendly businesses and industries in local communities, along with forest tourism, are slated for development.
By Elias Gebreselassie (Mongabay.com) |
ADDIS ABABA―Ethiopia’s work to keep its environmental programs sustainable while local communities benefit from forest preservation is set to get a boost. The country’s most prominent program to mobilize resources toward its net carbon neutral by 2025 goal, the Oromia Forested Landscape Program (OFLP), is scheduled to start this year.
Ethiopia’s massive Oromia region constitutes 34.3 percent of the country’s landmass, largely in the southwest, and holds more than a third of the country’s 100 million residents. It also harbors Ethiopia’s largest concentration of biodiversity.
The $68 million OFLP project was established through two World Bank funds. One fund is for $18 million and is aimed at the restoration of forests on degraded land. The other is a $50 million fund for a program targeting carbon sequestration assessment and performance enhancement. Under the umbrella of the OFLP, environmentally-friendly businesses and industries in local communities, along with forest tourism, are also slated for development.
The OFLP will receive payments of up to $50 million for verified carbon credits against an agreed forest reference emission level from the World Bank for a decade. The forest reference emission level is part of a critical policy framework that gives countries a point to measure the results they have gained from REDD+ (reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries) implementation.
An additional $18 million is under a five-year grant agreement focused on developing approaches that enable sustainable land use and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through the BioCarbon Fund for Sustainable Forest Landscapes. The BioCarbon Fund works to combat greenhouse gas emissions that come from the land sector, including deforestation and forest degradation, and in the promotion of relevant land-use policies. The project will monitor and account for forest cover reductions and deforestation, and associated GHG emissions across Oromia by addressing causes of deforestation and degradation.
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