This is the first community-based REDD+ program that will protect and restore 27,000 ha of cloud forest, in addition to preserving sacred groves and watersheds. Located in a global biodiversity hotspot, we aim to provide support, new technologies, and financial incentives to conserve existing forests and regenerate degraded ones. Another primary objective is to deliver long-term strategies to address extreme poverty facing rural families, by manufacturing and installing fuel-efficient cookstoves and plans to subsidize the majority of the 5,000 households in the project area. As a result of this, fuelwood consumption and indoor smoke pollution will be reduced, improving forest and family health.
🌻 Biodiversity conservation of unique flora, fauna, and montane cloud forest ecosystems.
🌳Preservation of 500-year old sacred groves with ancient megaliths
👪 Alleviating poverty with new livelihood strategies and capitalizing women-run self-help groups.
🦥 Restoring and protecting a forest wildlife corridor
🚜 Support for sustainable animal husbandry and farming systems.
Rural Khasi communities are concerned about deforestation that threatens upland watersheds, household livelihoods, while releasing substantial quantities of carbon. This community REDD+
project is slowing, halting and gradually reversing forest loss by providing institutional,
financial and technical support to allow communities to better monitor their forests, protect them against forest fire, regulate wood fuel collection, and regenerate and replant degraded forest lands. Through this REDD+ Project 62 villages are creating, restoring, and
protecting a forest wildlife corridor along the Umiam River, connecting sacred forests and
regenerating forest fragments at the landscape level.
As India’s first REDD+ strategy, the project provides a “proof of concept” for conserving
and restoring the country’s forests.
The project area has unique montane cloud forest ecosystems with 500 year old sacred groves riddled with standing stone megaliths that symbolize fallen warriors from ancient time and horizontal altar stones where rituals are still performed. The tradition of sacred groves in the project area has served as environmental protection for some of the old-growth forests, creating biodiversity “islands” and protecting the natural, clear streams.
The Khasi culture is matrilineal, with property rights transferred through the mother-line. This project represents a long-term strategy to address the extreme poverty facing rural families by supporting sustainable resource management, new livelihood opportunities, and capitalizing women-run micro-finance institutions.