Last June, Madagascar achieved a crucial milestone: the creation of Makira Natural Park in the country’s northeast. Spanning 1,438 square miles of rainforest, the area is the nation’s largest protected area and home to 1 percent of the world’s biodiversity.

To help finance the park’s long-term conservation, the Government of Madagascar and WCS have announced a sale. The product: More than 705,588 carbon credits, certified by the Makira Forest REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation "plus" conservation) Project.

REDD+ assigns financial value to the carbon stored in forests and compensates developing countries for reduced deforestation and forest degradation. The project also invests in low-carbon solutions to sustainable development in these areas.

“This sale is a major step forward for the Government of Madagascar in advancing the use of carbon credits to fight climate change while protecting biodiversity and human livelihoods,” said WCS president and CEO Cristián Samper. “WCS congratulates Madagascar and is proud to partner with them on the Makira REDD+ project.”

Avoiding deforestation is an important tool for reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Scientists estimate that the destruction of forests contributes an estimated 17 percent of annual carbon emissions. Along with the benefits to wildlife, sale of these carbon credits will benefit local communities living around the area.

Read the article on Time >>

Read the press release >>