The Makira Natural Park is the only habitat in the world where all 5 families of lemur species are represented. It is remarkable with its astounding biodiversity and its levels of endemism. Despite its global ecological importance, an estimated 15,000 hectares of forest was lost between 1995 to 2005 in the Park due primarily to slash-and-burn agriculture (tavy) and illegal logging for charcoal.The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), in its role as delegated manager of Makira Natural Park, is working in partnership with the Government of Madagascar to develop and promote the Makira Carbon Project. It is a REDD+ Project that is run by the Makira Carbon Company, a non-profit subsidiary of WCS.
Through the Project’s interventions since 2005, WCS and its supporters have helped save close to 6,000 hectares of forest and the deforestation rate has been cut by half. In addition to biodiversity protection, the Project maintains the vital ecosystems local communities in this landscape depend on for their survival. The goal of the Project is to improve the livelihoods of approximately 90,000 people around the Project area.
The Benefits of Carbon Sales for the Makira Project
The sale of these carbon credits has triple bottom-line benefits; it helps wildlife, local people, and fights climate change. For each Verified Carbon Unit (VCU) sold:
- 50% of the proceeds are transferred to the communities for community development, forest protection and sustainable natural resource management
- 20% is awarded to the Government of Madagascar for training and capacity development in REDD+ programming,
- 20% is provided to WCS to manage the Makira Park
- 10% is spent on financial management, marketing and certification fees.