This project protects 784,987 hectares of forests and wildlife on the southern shores of Lake Kariba. It is one of the largest registered REDD+ projects, connecting four national parks and eight safari reserves. The biodiversity corridor provided protects numerous vulnerable and endangered species including elephants, lions, hippos and more.
This project is uniquely important in that it conserves forests and wildlife that would have been destroyed for short term economic benefit, without sacrificing the local economic benefits themselves. In this way the local communities still benefit tremendously (see cobenefits below), as does the world as a whole, by preserving our rapidly diminishing flora and fauna.
Kariba is a community-based project, administered by the four local Rural District Councils (RDCs) of Binga, Nyaminyami, Hurungwe and Mbire. As such, the project supports a range of activities beyond environmental protection, promoting the independence and wellbeing of these communities. Improved clinic amenities provide better healthcare, infrastructure including new roads and boreholes improve daily life, and school subsidies are offered to the poorest quartile of the population. Project activities in conservation agriculture, community gardens, beekeeping training, fire management, and ecotourism create jobs and facilitate sustainable incomes, benefiting the entire region.
This project has a wealth of other cobenefits including generating over $250,000 in the local economy (1), introduced non-destructive nutritional gardens for food production (2), supports infrastructure for 14 health clinics (3), built schools educating over 18,000 people (4), provides clean water for over 37,000 people (6), created 22 permanent jobs (8), increased the independence of the local economy (9), and preserves 784,987 hectares for land based animals (15) through a network of local and international partnerships (17).