Project Type: Forestry
CEC Status: Active / Buy Carbon Credits
Carbon Credit Type: VCS
Validated by the Rainforest Alliance
The project has been developed in the area comprised by Tambopata National Reserve and the sector of Bahuaja-Sonene National Park located in Madre de Dios region, corresponding to the partial Administration Contract of RNTAMB and PNBS – Madre de Dios sector, signed by Peruvian State and the Asociación para la Investigación y el Desarrollo Integral – AIDER . Both Natural Protected Areas (NPA) belong politically to Tampopata province, Inambari and Tambopata districts, and have a combined area of 573 299,97 hectares.
The project purpose is to conserve forests from both NPAs against the imminent advance of deforestation.The project proposes to reduce pressure to change land-use at the NPAs Buffer Zone by promoting sustainable economic activities and establishing conservation agreements at previously identified critical areas. Both actions are looking forward to consolidate a “barrier” against expansion of economic frontier (agricultural and mining activities), with alliance and permanent coordination with institutions that are currently doing conservation activities in the area.In addition, RNTAMB and PNBS control and surveillance system will be strengthened, even more on conformation and operation of community committees of surveillance with official recognition, as a strategy for local communities to participate in NPAs management. Finally, we will provide technical support to regional forest authority and National Service of Natural Protected Areas –SERNANP for forest and environmental governance of Madre de Dios region, enhancing State participation on NPAs and optimizing coordination and collaboration between authorities and local population on NPAs management.
Endangered fauna in the project area:
“Agroforestry” is a technical word used to describe different ways to associate tree species, including fruit, medicinal, timber and other trees, with short term crops, as components of a sustainable agricultural production system. Agroforestry systems allow a dynamic and ecological handling of natural resources, by integrating trees to agricultural lands, from small lands to pastures and other scenarios, diversifying and increasing productivity, promoting economic, social and environmental benefits for direct users and population at large, which demonstrates to be also a good alternative to prevent, reduce and revert soil degradation. The first project task is to do a micro-zoning of each beneficiary land, considering criteria as soil fertility, species of community interest, agricultural techniques (to avoid soil degradation) and other necessary criteria to ensure the activity sustainability. These systems are expected to provide constant incomes for beneficiary population through production of annual crops, fruit trees, fast growing timber trees and high value timber species. The table 2 mentions possible species for this activity; previous studies will determine if these ones and their associations are adequate for the specific parcel where this activity is implemented. This activity will progressively incorporate a permaculture approach, pursuing a production with a systemic approach linked to social strengthening and good management of the landscape.
Palm tree management
Within the project area exist forests with palm tree predominance, with “aguaje” (Mauritia flexuosa) as the most abundant species, which, together with “ungurahui” (Oenocarpus sp.) and other species, forms extensive associations locally known as “aguajales”; these have importance not only for human consumption but also for wildlife, because their fruits are part of the ungulate, rodents and primates diet (Bodmer,1999), being established an palm-animal-human relation, which has to be managed to ensure conservation of the ecosystem and it’s dynamics, ecosystems that would provide more storage by carbon capture (Guzmán, 2004). Referent to the way that this populations are being managed in the project area, it is known that currently inappropriate techniques are being applied at stages of harvest and post-harvest (strong pressure over natural populations by selective logging of female “aguajes”), causing low productivity, low product quality and, therefore, limited conditions to access other markets. Products obtained from palm tree species growing in the area (edible fruits and leaves) represent a contribution to local economy, since they are abundant at the area, of traditional use and with a natural and continuous demand. The project proposes to provide technical assistance to rural producers, involving them in control measures of palm trees production, replacing destructive harvesting practices to sustainable practices (to climb palm trees for fruit harvest).
Aquaculture is an economic activity that includes a farming system, focusing human intervention on stock reproduction and also on capture (Lockwood, quoted by Gonzáles et al, 2004). Compared to fishing, this system makes possible a selective production increase of edible, industry or ornamental species. This is not a new activity, so along the years has demonstrated to have an important role on future production of fish and population food support. As an Amazon region, Madre de Dios has fish as main protein source in the diet, being rivers Madre de Dios and Tambopata the places with more fishing activity, where the larger floodplains of the region are located. To the moment, 245 fish species have been identified in Madre de Dios basin, grouped in 179 genus, 38 families and 12 orders. From these, just 48 species sustain commercial fishing which main disembark port is located in Puerto Maldonado (Tello, 2002). The extraction of hydro biological resources has gradually decreased from 1995 when reached 768 tons to reach the lowest point in 1999 with 132 tons, as is observed in Figure 1. Strong pressure of fishing activity, as well as of mining activity that pollutes rivers with mercury, have been diminishing natural populations. Species with more demand in Puerto Maldonado market are: doncella, mota, boquichico, dorado and saltón. Furthermore, paiche and tilapia can be used for aquaculture; both species were managed on past experiences, with optimum results. Aquaculture has advantages over other activities, like agriculture, as it uses smaller areas for infrastructure, allowing installation on deforested land and once operating it becomes a profitable activity. It is important to mention that farm water quality is controlled, so there has to be special care with existing mercury amount, to guarantee mercury-free fish production. Initial investment and necessity of technical training to manage and care young fish are high barriers. This activity is not occurring in the project area but considering it an economic activity with low environmental impact, sustainable and profitable, it is included in REDD project activities.
Low-impact gold production
Mining activity in Madre de Dios starts way before NPA creation and the project, as is shown on section 1.10 (Prior conditions). Is a highly profitable economic activity but causes moderately significant impacts to environment, like a consequence of mercury pollution, soil removal, and deforestation, among others. It is an artisanal mining, so election of extraction sites, exploitation techniques and waste disposal are done in a chaotic way, polluting forest water and soil. From used mercury, 20 % is discharged directly to the river and other 20 % is lost in atmosphere. It is calculated that mercury annual discharge to rivers is between 10 and 30 tons (Gutleb, quoted by Tello, 2002). Metallic mercury is transformed into inorganic mercury (dimethyl and methyl mercury) by aerobic and anaerobic bacteria located on aquatic environment sediments; it is in this stage where mercury is absorbed and accumulated into fish and then transmitted to human beings that eat them. It has been considered in the project to perform a mining activity friendly with natural and social environment. Initially recycling inputs used for extraction (mercury) will be considered, which will be recuperated by using a “Mercury reactant” (it allows to use mercury up to 3 times); black sand polluted with mercury and same recycled useless mercury must be deposited in trenches (special pits) duly sealed to avoid contact with biophysical environment. In a second stage will be introduced gold extraction technologies without using mercury, and a third stage will consist in initiating the first action to certificate obtained gold. Since this is an informal activity, there will be constant training to strength their organisation and capacities so they can manage their own small or micro business.
Sustainable forest management for timber
There is evidence of logging activity at the area belonging to the project leakage belt. Is a small-scale activity, in other words, commercialised volumes are not huge, but doing a selective logging of high commercial value species (cedar, mahogany, “ishpingo”, etc.) are generating impacts to forest like seed trees lost, opening roads for timber transportation using skidder, trucks, etc., that compact the soil and pollute water streams, scare away wildlife and eliminate part of undergrowth from areas under extraction. The project has a proposal to give continuous technical assistance to forest users so they can develop this activity with low environmental impact, that is to say, planning their activities, optimising their operations and above all managing forest in a sustainable way.