Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) and Carbon Tanzania (CT) have recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to implement a significant carbon project across six national parks in Tanzania.
The parks included in this initiative are Burigi-Chato, Katavi Plains, Ugalla River, Mkomazi, Gombe Stream, and Mahale Mountains, together encompassing an area of 1.8 million hectares.
Carbon credits work as a type of tradable certificate representing the right to emit a specific amount of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases.
One credit typically equals one ton of carbon dioxide. Organizations or entities that reduce their emissions can earn these credits and sell them to others who need to offset their own emissions.
This system incentivizes reducing carbon emissions and investing in sustainable practices.
For TANAPA, participating in the carbon credit project will help in several ways:
- Revenue Generation: By protecting and managing the forests in the national parks, TANAPA can generate carbon credits. These credits can then be sold on the carbon market, providing a new source of income.
- Conservation Funding: The revenue from selling carbon credits can be used to fund further conservation efforts within Tanzania’s national parks, aiding in the protection and preservation of biodiversity.
- Sustainable Management: The project encourages sustainable management of natural resources, which aligns with TANAPA’s goals of environmental preservation and ecological balance.
- Community Engagement: Part of the revenue can also support local communities around the parks, aligning conservation efforts with community development and benefit-sharing.
The initial phase of the project involves conducting a feasibility study to evaluate the potential volume of carbon credits that can be produced from each park area.
Additionally, it will aid in formulating a robust business model and a management plan to ensure the project’s financial sustainability and long-term viability.
Carbon Tanzania’s role in this project also includes leveraging its network of international investments to provide TANAPA with access to additional revenue streams, thus bolstering its capacity to manage a growing number of protected areas.
In the revenue distribution from the sale of carbon credits, TANAPA is slated to receive 61% of the total sales revenues. This allocation is per the recently published carbon trading regulations.
Tanzania introduced its first legislation on carbon trading in 2022 with the Environmental Management (Control and Management of Carbon Trading) Regulations, Government Notice Number 636.
These regulations govern all carbon trading projects in Mainland Tanzania and are designed to work alongside ratified international treaties and existing laws related to carbon trading.
The regulations also provide guidelines for TANAPA to collaborate with communities neighboring national parks, ensuring that the benefits accrued from the revenues contribute to socio-economic advancements for local populations.