Alternative fuel wood supply for local people
Dependency on biomass energy in one part and cultivation of land on the other hand accelerated deforestation, created a negative influence on the endemic/indigenous biodiversity, released large quantities of carbon dioxide and markedly reduced the carbon-storage capacity of the forest. This is also the case in Kafa Biosphere Reserve.
Due to this situation the project aims to reduce the pressure on the natural forests by establishing 1,500 hectares of community plantations with fast growing trees for fuel wood production. The assessment of suitable areas for community plantations was based on the recommendations from the forest and community analysis. Its suitability, among others, should consider the proximity to more developed and highly fuel wood dependent communities, e.g., where fuel wood purchase and sale is practiced.
Through community plantations less natural forest will be destroyed and with this the amount of carbon dioxide that will be emitted as a result of deforestation for firewood will be reduced. During the rotation period the plantation will sequester substantial amount of CO² from the atmosphere. This will add on already available carbon stock in the forest.
Both social and environmental impacts of community plantations are very well known in Ethiopia. Jobs are being created through this project component in tree nurseries and establishment and management of these plantations. From an environmental point of view; community plantations assist in soil and water conservation, harbour wildlife and birdlife and modify micro-climate.