Massive carbon sink, ecosystem services and biodiversity enhancement

Large-scale afforestation in Kyrgyzstan’s mountainous regions

Take Up LLC, a Kyrgyz-based company, is conducting a large-scale afforestation project in the mountainous regions of Issyk-Kul and Jalal-Abad in the Republic of Kyrgyzstan, on 5031.6 hectares of currently unused and unforested land. After conducting a pilot project to test the bioclimatic conditions and define the most fitting tree species and their distribution, MEO Carbon Solutions carried out a detailed feasibility study for the certification of carbon removals under ClimatePal. The project design is aligned with the latest UNFCCC CDM methodologies and presents a high potential to contribute to climate change mitigation and sustainable development.

The project is consistent with the Forest Code of the Kyrgyz Republic and land tenure laws. It seeks to address the degradation of pastureland through sustainable afforestation practices, aiming to restore ecological balance and enhance biodiversity. Based on the assessment done, the project complies with the requirements and principles of the selected CDM methodology and is eligible under the methodology’s scope. The project follows the Core Carbon Principles, namely: effective governance, traceability, additionality, permanence, no double counting, no leakage, sustainable development benefits & safeguards, and contribution toward net zero.

Project additionality is determined that the project’s implementation is beyond customary practice in Kyrgyzstan, and it would not occur without the carbon certification. Alternative land use scenarios, including continuation of pre-project land use, forestation without carbon certification, and conversion to arable land, are carefully evaluated. The analysis showed that the project activities are additional and bring ecological and socio-economic benefits, beside the mitigation action of carbon removal. As prescribed by the chosen methodology, the estimation of net carbon removal considered mandatory carbon sinks (namely above and below ground biomass of tree). Due to the tree stands in the project area being considered mature, the change in biomass in the baseline was considered to be zero, and hence, the baseline emissions were set to zero. No emissions from leakage were considered. According to the calculations, during the 30 years of project lifetime the net carbon removal are predicted to be 4,023.15 ktCO2e. A risk assessment determined that 30% of the carbon should be discounted to account for tree mortality. Additionally, 20% of the yearly carbon sequestration should be kept in the buffer pool as safeguard for any reversal. This results in a total amount of 2,252,953 carbon credits that can be generated by the project.

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Contribution to the SDGs