Yesterday, Zambia’s Labour Day celebrations coincided with celebrations of our own, as communities participating in BCP’s REDD+ activities became the first in Zambia’s history to receive carbon rights.
The milestone is a significant step toward empowerment for communities in effectively managing and benefiting from their natural resources. By legally recognising the rights of local communities to profit from carbon offsets generated by their own forest areas, participants in Zambia’s REDD+ activities now have legal security to retain income from carbon stocks on community land.
In order to halt deforestation in Zambia, communities must be engaged and empowered to make changes that support local development and employment. By formalising community rights to carbon stores in their natural resources, communities can make long-term plans for local development supported by carbon income.
So far, seven of the twelve Chiefdoms participating in BCP’s LCFP REDD+ project have been granted their carbon rights by the Government of Zambia. Rights agreements are already in progress for the remaining Chiefdoms, and we hope to secure agreements for all participating communities within the next few months.