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Archive for the ‘India’ Category

May The Forest Be With You… COTAP visits the Khasi Hills (2023)

January 20th, 2023


We hope you enjoy this mini-documentary about our November 2022 visit to the Khasi Hills Community REDD+ Project in Meghalaya, India. If you enjoy watching it, PLEASE take a moment to do all that “influencer stuff” like liking, sharing, and subscribing to our channel : )

The Khasi Hills project was the first of its kind in India, and remains one of few worldwide that is fully owned and operated by local indigenous communities. Ten years on, this trailblazing and exemplary project has proven the concept and is paving the way for more indigenous-led forest conservation carbon projects in Northeastern India and beyond.

Since 2014, Cotappers have delivered over $230K in carbon offset funding for the project, which spans 90.7 square miles and over 7,400 households, and through 2021 the project has made $350,451 in payments to 86 villages. COTAP was one of the project’s earliest supporters, and we were the first carbon offsets partner to visit the project.

There were already PLENTY of important, serious, detailed, and technical films, documentation, and reports about the Khasi Hills Community REDD+ Project. So, we are aiming to put out something a little lighter, more fun, and more personal…

We spent 3 days checking out a wide range of project activities and chatting up project staff and beneficiaries in order to learn how the project is addressing deforestation, creating income, and improving lives. We found out things like the proper width of a fire line and how a propane stove can improve someone’s social life. The Khasi we met were some of the most kind, modest, hardworking, regular folk you’ll ever meet. And it was surprising to feel homesick to leave a place after less than a week…

CORRECTION: At the 19:08 mark where the subtitle says “…every girl child has the path” should say “…every girl child has the part”. As in part of the family property.

You can support the Khasi Hills REDD+ project by offsetting your unavoidable CO2 emissions here:

 

 

The donation rate is $15 per tonne, with the project receiving 90% of funds and sharing 60%+ with participating communities, and it’s tax-deductible in the U.S. Your support enables the Synjuk (“Federation” in Khasi) to continue to protect and restore their forests while improving livelihoods for the local community.

Directed by Minnie Vaid of Little Doc Productions.

May The Forest Be With You… COTAP visits the Khasi Hills (2023) | Official Trailer (HD)

December 28th, 2022


Offset your CO2 emissions through this project here:


 

Coming in January 2023 to a device near you! Please take a moment to share and help us spread the word.

There are already PLENTY of important, serious, detailed, and technical films, documentation, and reports about the Khasi Hills Community REDD+ Project. Case in point, “REDD” stands for “Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation,” which is official UN fancy-talk for what used to be referred to as “avoided deforestation.” Yawn!

So, we are aiming to put out something a little more casual, charming, fun, and maybe even occasionally silly. We spent 3 days checking out a wide range of project activities, meeting and chatting with project staff and beneficiaries to learn how the project is addressing deforestation and creating income and improving lives. We found out things like the proper width of a fire line and how a rice cooker can improve someone’s social life. Oh, and we had a blast! The Khasi we met were some of the most modest, hardworking, regular folk you’ll ever meet, and it was strange to feel homesick to leave a place after only 5 days.

The Khasi project was the first of its kind in India, and remains one of few worldwide that is fully owned and operated by local indigenous communities. The trailblazing Khasi took action first before knowing whether things would work out, and now 10 years on this exemplary project has proven the concept and paved the way for more forest conservation carbon projects in Northeastern India and beyond.

Since 2014, Cotappers have delivered over $240K in carbon offset funding for the Khasi Hills Community REDD+ Project. The project spans 90.7 square miles and over 7,400 households, and through 2021 has made $350,451 in payments to 86 villages.

You can support the Khasi Hills REDD+ project by offsetting your unavoidable CO2 emissions at https://cotap.org/donate/khasi-hills-india-redd/. The donation rate is $15 per tonne, with the project receiving 90% of funds and sharing 60%+ with participating communities, and it’s tax-deductible in the U.S. Your support enables the Synjuk (“Federation” in Khasi) to continue to protect and restore their forests while improving livelihoods for the local community.

Directed by Minnie Vaid of Little Doc Productions.

Tambor Lyngdoh discusses the Khasi Hills Community REDD+ Project

December 26th, 2022


Offset your CO2 emissions through this project here:


 

Bah (Sir in the Khasi language) Tambor Lyngdoh recorded this presentation for Day 2 of the Plan Vivo Foundation and Carbon Standard’s Stakeholder Meeting on September 28, 2022. It was part of a panel titled “How do we strengthen our regional presence/ What are the opportunities for Plan Vivo in each region?”

Tambor is Secretary of the Synjuk or Federation which governs the exemplary Khasi Hills Community REDD+ Project. The full name of the Synjuk is Ka Synjuk Ki Hima Arliang Wah-Umiam Mawphlang Welfare Society (KSKHAW-UMWS) and their tagline in Khasi is “Ia La Ka Mei Mariang Ngin Sumar Kylliang” which means “It is our part, to take care of our Mother Nature.”

Tambor gives an overview of the project, which just celebrated its 10th anniversary as the first such project in India and one of few worldwide that is owned and operated by local indigenous communities.

Topics include the project’s achievements and its historical, cultural, and conservation contexts as well as project governance structure and strategies which strengthen and diversify community income streams and food security.

Further, Tambor covers strategies for household fuel alternatives to firewood and charcoal, such as electric rice cookers and LPG (liquid propane gas) stoves, which reduce pressure on the forests. The project has supplied approximately 1,000 rice cookers and 4,500 LPG stoves to the communities.

Tambor also discusses progress in addressing project challenges such as drought, fire, charcoal demand, and ensuring continued implementation and progress across a project area spanning 90.7 square miles and over 7,400 households.

Please consider offsetting your unavoidable CO2 emissions through this project at https://COTAP.org/Khasi. $15/tonne, the project receives 90% of funds and shares 60%+ with participating communities, and it’s tax-deductible in the U.S.

COTAP at Plan Vivo Stakeholder Meeting

November 11th, 2022

On September 27th & 28th, the Plan Vivo Foundation Carbon Standard held its stakeholder event in Edinburgh, Scotland. COTAP’s founder Tim Whitley participated in a panel titled “What does ‘scaling with care’ look like from different perspectives?” A full summary of the event, with links to other presentations, can be found here.

Tim (bald gentleman on the right) experienced some pretty serious imposter syndrome as he shared the stage with Plan Vivo Trustee Emily Fripp, Plan Vivo CEO Keith Bohannon, Vanga Blue Forest Coordinator Mwanrusi Mwafrica, Carbon Tanzania CEO Marc Baker, Taking Root CEO Kahlil Baker (Taking Root’s CommuniTree project in Nicaragua was COTAP’s first partner project in 2011), and Molly Hawes, Senior Climate Action and Engagement Manager at Springer Nature.

Strenghtening Plan Vivo’s Regional Presence


The stakeholder event (this was COTAP’s third) is a great way to connect in-person with existing project leaders, as well as network with potential collaborators from all over the world who share the value of inclusive and pro-poor climate action.

On this panel, FIVE out of COTAP’s six currently-supported projects participated: Nakau CEO Robbie Henderson (Drawa project in Fiji), Ecotrust Uganda’s Executive Director Pauline Nantongo, AMBIO’s Helena Barona (Scolel’te project in Mexico), Tambor Lyngdoh of the Khasi Hills REDD+ Project in India, Emmy Primadonna of KKI Warsi’s Bujang Raba project in Indonesia, and Plan Vivo Trustee Mark Pfoffenberger.

Tambor and Emmy presented recorded presentations as they weren’t able to obtain visas, so it was great to also hear Mark, who along with his spouse Kate Smith-Hanssen, has been instrumental in both projects’ implementation and success, represent both projects in person.

More about COTAP & Plan Vivo


Since 2011, COTAP has exclusively supported projects certified by Plan Vivo. Plan Vivo, the world’s oldest voluntary carbon standard, celebrated its 25th birthday in 2022. Today, over 100,000 rural community members are engaged in 27 Plan Vivo projects spanning 285,000 hectares in 21 countries. These projects have created over 7 million tonnes of planned CO2 emissions reductions and have channeled over $25 million to these communities, some of the poorest on Earth.

Plan Vivo remains the only carbon standard to require that projects share a minimum of 60% of carbon revenues with local communities. Combined with COTAP’s transparent pricing of $15/tonne and modest margin of 10%, this means that an unparalleled $8.10+ of community income is created per tonne offset through COTAP.

Cotapper Umair Kabani shares his enthusiasm for the Khasi Hills Community REDD+ Project

December 24th, 2020


Offset your CO2 emissions through Umair’s Khasi/COTAP campaign on GoFundMe. To receive a formal COTAP acknowledgement, please forward your GoFundMe receipt to donate at cotap dot org. If you prefer, you can offset through the Khasi project on COTAP.

 

 

As you can see, Umair Kabani has clear and infectious enthusiasm for the Khasi Hills Community REDD+ project! Umair is a Los Angeles-based startup entrepreneur, business coach, real estate syndicator, and connector. Earlier this year, he discovered that his ancestry includes the Khasi Hills in the northeastern Indian state of Meghalaya.

Umair’s research led him to COTAP, and he became so intrigued and inspired that he not only became a Cotapper and offset his personal emissions through the Khasi project, but he also launched a GoFundMe page to support it. As of December 24, 2020 his campaign has raised over $2,200 for the the Khasi Hills Community REDD+ project. Check out his video and you’ll see why!

More about the Khasi Hills Community REDD+ Project


The Khasi project is India’s first community-based REDD+ program, and one of the first REDD+ projects anywhere to be 100% owned, controlled, and operated by indigenous communities. Ten tribal administrative units called Hima represent 62 villages (with approximately 4,357 households) and collectively form the project’s governance and oversight council known as the Synjuk (or “Federation”). The Synjuk was legally established in 2011 as the Ka Synjuk Ki Hima Arliang Wah Umiam, Mawphlang Welfare Society (KKHAW-UMWS). The project is located in the East Khasi Hills District of Meghalaya and the Umiam River Watershed, which boasts one of the highest recorded annual rainfalls in the world.

Started in 2005, the project is now protecting and restoring 27,139 hectares of cloud forest, which in 2010 comprised approximately 9,270 hectares of dense forests and 5,947 hectares of open forests. 78% of the project’s emissions reductions over 30 years are expected to result from avoided deforestation through advance closure, cutting fire lines, distributing efficient stoves, and promoting alternative livelihood activities. The remainder will result from Assisted Natural Regeneration (ANR) performed on open forests in 1,500-hectare increments.

The project distributes benefits through its Community Development Grants Program, and the most frequent project type applied for is to improve water systems by installing tanks, building washing areas, and digging drinking water wells. The project successfully concluded its first 3rd-party verification in 2017 and its buyers include TUI Nordic Airlines, Arvid Nordqvist coffee, and Expedia, Inc.

The project operates in rural areas where firewood is the primary fuel source for cooking and heating, and the project’s purpose of reducing pressure on local forests through efficient stoves goes hand in hand with reducing wood smoke inhalation. The Khasi project’s multi-pronged effort to reduce fuelwood consumption includes distribution of electric rice cookers and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and a goal of ensuring half of the project area’s 4,400 households have an efficient wood-burning stove by 2020.

The Hima vote on how to distribute the project’s performance-based carbon offset earnings among villages. As an example, in 2015 68% of the 62 participating villages reported utilizing their community grants from carbon sales to improve their drinking water systems by installing wells, water tanks, and formal washing places. This was by far the dominant project type that year, as 100% of 8 recently-sampled water supply sites had confirmed the presence of coliform bacteria.