Colombia: Colombia: Commercial Reforestation on Lands Dedicated to Extensive Cattle Grazing Activities - Magdalena Bajo Seco
(Biocarbon Fund Tranche 2)
UNFCCC Reference No.: 4861
However, in spite of its natural potential, for years the basin has suffered from human activities that have caused serious environmental degradation. Between the 1970s and 1990s, about 4.6 million hectares of forestry ecosystems were destroyed. Traditional extensive cattle ranching, mining, and industrial agricultural activities also affected negatively on soil erosion, diminished the fishery resources and deteriorated the coral reefs in the Caribbean Sea. The low productivity of grazing, lack of alternative economic activities and demographical increase added pressure to the social situation, generating spiral of violence and irreversible environmental damage.
The PRC program encompasses reforestation of 4,400 hectares of land traditionally devoted to extensive cattle grazing in the north of Colombia, in the lower part of the Magdalena River basin, called Magdalena Bajo Seco. The covered region includes six municipalities: Santa Bárbara de Pinto, Plato, Tenerife, Zapayán, Pedraza and Piñón and is one of the most deforested areas in the country.
The program has become the first example of public-private partnership for forestry business in Colombia. It has changed the traditional development approach of forestry initiatives and enables the participating landowners to move from receiving donations, credits or subsidies from the government to internalizing the concept of forestry business and perceiving plantation as their own business, while receiving payments for emission reduction.
Environmental and social benefits:
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