Location

Bago Region, Myanmar

Participating Area

75,000 hectares

Project Type

REDD+, Agriculture, Forestry, and Other Land Use (AFOLU)

Crediting Period Start

2015

Expected First Verification

2018

North Zamari Reserve Forest, Myanmar

About the Project

In collaboration with the Korean Forest Service, Korean Green Promotion Agency, and the Myanmar Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation (MONREC), Terra initiated a first-of-its-kind REDD+ project in Myanmar in June 2016. The project seeks to protect forest resources within the North Zamari Reserve Forest in Myanmar’s Bago Region, while improving livelihoods and promoting sustainable development to communities residing around the forest. The project’s focus, the North Zamari Reserve Forest, is a roughly 75,000-hectare zone of highly threatened tropical upland rainforest that contains numerous threatened and endangered species, particularly the rare Asian Elephant. While the Reserve Forest was designated as an Elephant Sanctuary in 2014 increased economic development resulting from Myanmar’s recent change to democracy from military rule has exacerbated existing deforestation pressures in the region. The goal of the REDD+ Project is ultimately to reduce deforestation within the reserve forest, improve local livelihoods, and provide a model “pilot project” for future REDD+ efforts in the country. Some of the major drivers of deforestation in the region are timber extraction for charcoal and fuelwood, illegal logging of precious hardwoods, and the slow conversion of native forest to teak plantations.

The North Zamari REDD+ Project will focus on implementing activities within the surrounding Bago and Thayarwady Districts. The project is administered locally by the Forest Research Institute (FRI), a division of Ministry of Natural Resources Environmental Conservation (MONREC), with support from the Korea Forestry Promotion Institute (KoFPI), Korea Forest Service, and Terra Global Capital. In addition to building the first REDD+ project within the country, a major goal of the collaboration is to build local capacity and develop institutional knowledge that will aid in national-level REDD+ efforts, and possibly jurisdictional-level programs. 

Community Benefits

Decades of military rule and highly centralized government decision-making have led to a legacy in the region of forced removals, unclear land tenure, and unrest. A major goal of the project is to develop community buy-in and address grievances with a formalized and dedicated stakeholder engagement and integration effort. The project will build on existing efforts by MONREC in addressing deforestation, and developing sustainable and economically feasible alternative livelihoods for local communities. The region highlighted by the project is highly diverse, and REDD+ efforts – through inclusive social assessments, project actions, community collaboration and ongoing monitoring– seek to build greater social equity in the Project Zone, specifically supporting minorities (Karen, Kachin), women, and economically disadvantaged populations.

Biodiversity Benefits

The North Zamari Reserve Forest represents 75,000 hectares of mostly intact tropical upland rainforest containing substantial numbers of rare and endangered species. In addition to containing habitat for the rapidly declining populations of Asian Elephant, the forest also contains a small population of tigers, leopards, sun bears, Chinese pangolins, and many rare species of turtles. The North Zamari Reserve Forest contains much of the remaining closed primary forest habitat within the previously heavily logged Pegu Range. In addition, the project area contains many species listed in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)’s Red List, many of which have significant international interest and local cultural and spiritual value. 

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