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Forest management expansion in Ethiopia

Gerremew with his top bar beehives in Bonga Forest, Ethiopia. Gerremew with his top bar beehives in Bonga Forest, Ethiopia.

The Problem

Ethiopia has vast natural forests in the Bale Mountains and beyond that are home to a wide range of plants, animals and birds. Millions of people live in these abundant forests, but poverty drives many to cut down trees to clear land for grazing and to sell as timber.

Deforestation and forest degradation account for nearly 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions – more than the entire global transportation sector. Halting deforestation is key to stabilising global average temperatures and ensuring long term food security for farmers in Bale.

What are we doing?

Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest degradation (REDD) is a project that incentivises countries to reduce emissions and enhances forest carbon stocks. We are working to help the Ethiopian government protect 50,000 hectares of forest.

In this Guardian interview Farm Africa's former forestry expert, Tsegaye Tadessa, explains how we are working to reduce deforestation:

For many years, Farm Africa has been refining its forest management system, which strikes a balance between forest conservation and the livelihoods of the local people who depend on those forests. By developing formal agreements between communities and local authorities, we promote forest-friendly farming that produces diverse and sustainable income streams for residents.

For example, communities are:

  • developing traditional activities like beekeeping, producing essential oils, making bamboo furniture and harvesting wild coffee
  • using fuel-efficient stoves made from local materials, greatly reducing demand for firewood to cook with
  • working with local governments to develop forest management plans that will protect the local environment and preserve their home for future generations.

Who are we helping?

The project is supporting millions of people across Ethiopia’s forests. We are also helping the government to find long-term ways to protect Ethiopia’s forests.

Who are we working with?

We are carrying out this work in partnership with local NGO SOS Sahel, with funding from the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Addis Ababa.

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