A Ton of Good: Lion Landscapes and BCP partner to create Lion Carbon

Lion cubs playing, Ed Selfe Photography

Lion Landscapes, a grassroots organization working in Africa, has become the first conservation organization to become ‘100% climate positive’, using the ground-breaking Lion Carbon.

Lion Carbon is an innovative premium carbon offset that simultaneously addresses climate change, landscape-level biodiversity conservation, and local empowerment. Lion Carbon is developed by BCP, one of Africa’s leading forest carbon offset developers, in partnership with Lion Landscapes, a conservation organization working in Zambia, Kenya, and Tanzania.

How does Lion Carbon work?

Under BCP’s REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) Model, the mechanism generates sustainable income for local communities, which is linked to the conservation of their forests and wildlife:

“Lion Carbon is a tool to close the funding gap in protecting Africa’s greatest wildlife legacy landscapes. The Lower Zambezi to Luangwa Valley is described by National Geographic as one of the last 10 lion strongholds on the planet.  Lion Carbon aims to help restore the Luangwa Valley’s wildlife and forests through improved community livelihoods.  We need to be creative in ways to help protect ‘gigaforests’; forests that have the potential to store up to a billion tons of carbon”

Dr Hassan Sachedina, BCP CEO.

Biodiversity loss is closely tied to poverty in many parts of Zambia, where local communities depend on the use of natural resources to meet their basic needs. Limited financial models exist to incentivize local people to protect biodiversity, with tourism being a key player. Even in normal years, tourism often fails to generate sufficient revenue for conservation, while the recent crash in global tourism due to Covid-19 has decimated income for many wildlife areas.

“As conservationists, we spend our lives trying to facilitate coexistence between people and wildlife where wildlife generally represents more of a cost than a benefit to local people. We don’t believe that just minimising those costs is enough. We are thrilled that our partnership with BCP has allowed us to help develop a solution that significantly improves the wellbeing of people as a direct result of habitat and wildlife conservation.”

Dr Alayne Cotterill, joint CEO of Lion Landscapes.

A REDD+ Model you can Trust

BCP works in partnership with Government and local communities to conserve forests under 30-year forest management agreements, using the highest Verified Carbon Standards (VCS). In addition to this, BCP’s projects were the first in Africa to achieve gold-level validation against all three categories of the Climate, Community, and Biodiversity (CCB) Standards, while the Lower Zambezi REDD+ Project has also attained CCB Triple Gold Verification. Income from BCP’s carbon offsets protects over 530,000,000 trees across almost 1 million hectares of community forest. That is an average reduction of deforestation-related emissions of 1.4 million tonnes of carbon dioxide per year, the equivalent to removing 290,000 cars from the roads annually. It is not just climate and forests that are benefitting. In 2020-2021, the Luangwa Community Forests Project generated over US$4 million in direct payments to 12 chiefdoms for the protection of wildlife habitat and community development. Across both projects the REDD+ model benefits 225,000 people, making BCP’s REDD+ projects the biggest in the world in terms of community beneficiaries.

Email info@biocarbonpartners.com today to find out how you can be part of the change and offset Lion Carbon today.

Bringing Us Closer To Over 20,000 Community Beneficiaries in Mwanya and Chitungulu: BCP’s Lundazi Office Is Officially Open

Access to clean water is a basic human right that has changed the lives of so many in LCFP.
The LCFP (Luangwa Community Forests Project) – As Africa’s largest REDD+ project by hectarage, the distance from our Lusaka Head office to the northernmost Chitungulu Chiefdom by North Luangwa National Park stretches over roughly 850 kms.  In order to more reliably serve our community and government partners, we added an 8th office in Lundazi town to support Mwanya and Chitungulu Chiefdoms, and to begin engaging with a possible new Chiefdom partner, Kazembe. Together, the 3 Chiefdoms cover a total of 138,967 hectares of vital ecosystem. Lundazi is home to Lukusuzi and Luambe National Parks, and borders both North and South Luangwa National Parks, making it a conservation ‘bridge’. Between Mwanya and Chitungulu alone, LCFP’s reach is so impactful that it is benefiting a total of 20,753 beneficiaries across 3,459 households.

Due to the remoteness of the area, the new Lundazi office is integral to streamlining operations, such as community scout deployment and community engagement; and to strengthen our partnership with our Chiefdom and government partners in the region.
Lundazi borders Malawi and is located 187 kms from Chipata.

“I share BCP’s goal of making conservation of wildlife habitat more valuable to my people. Since our partnership with BCP began 4 years ago, there have been such positive changes. I see a mindset change in our people, which is evident in the following: a reduction in cases of human-wildlife conflict, low findings of illegal fishing, and a drop in deforestation for charcoal and timber production”.
His Royal Highness, Chief Chitungulu

In 2020,  using forest carbon fees directly paid by BCP to the community, Mwanya Chiefdom installed solar lighting at Mkasanga Primary School and purchased a fiberglass boat for the Lukusuzi River crossing point; a risky site due to crocodiles in the rainy season. While, Chitungulu Chiefdom invested in boreholes, and in teachers’ housing in Kasamba, which has helped to prevent teachers from seeking employment elsewhere. These may seem like basic necessities; however, they are bringing life-changing impacts to the community members they are reaching.
Why Zambia?
Zambia’s deforestation is among the highest in the world. Zambia loses forest four times the size of New York City to deforestation every year. That’s an average of 300,000 hectares of valuable wildlife habitat, mainly driven by charcoal production and unsustainable farming techniques. We understand that in order to address deforestation, we have to develop deeper partnerships to jointly tackle the root causes of why deforestation is taking place, to begin with. The LCFP is a partnership between Government, BCP, and 12 Chiefdoms in the Luangwa to Lower Zambezi valleys, that works to address key drivers of deforestation while benefitting local communities and supporting forest and wildlife restoration.  The LCFP is enhancing the quality of life for 217,000 people in 36,000 households in one of Zambia’s most impoverished regions through a partnership-based approach.