On March 18, during the 28th Board Meeting, the Green Climate Fund (GCF)* approved the first project proposed by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA): Community-based Landscape Management for Enhanced Climate Resilience and Reduction of Deforestation in critical Watersheds in Timor-Leste.
The forest cover in Timor-Leste has declined from about 73.8% in 2003 to 58% in 2012. Unsustainable natural resource and land management practices such as shifting cultivation, expansion of farmlands, and overgrazing has resulted in deforestation and forest degradation. It has also led to an increase in greenhouse gas emissions. In turn, intensified and more frequent droughts and floods due to climate change reduce food production by traditional methods and accelerate further expansion of farmlands for securing subsistence crops. Communities adjacent to the forests are vulnerable as their livelihoods depend on these natural resources.
To address these challenges, JICA has been working with communities and government agencies in Timor-Leste for over a decade and as a result developed the Community-Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) approach. This promotes participatory natural resource management and provides more sustainable and climate-resilient livelihood options, putting the communities at the centre of practices.
This project aims at reducing forest degradation and deforestation through applying the CBNRM approach in 74 vulnerable upland communities (about 48,000 people) of four watersheds. The project is expected to reduce greenhouse gases (CO2eq) by 4.4m tonnes over 20 years and contributes to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 13, 15 and 17.
JICA will continue to support the efforts of developing countries on the transition to a zero-carbon and climate-resilient society.
(*) The Green Climate Fund (GCF) was established as the operating entity of the financial mechanism of the UNFCCC in 2010. GCF supports developing countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and enhance their ability to respond to climate change.
Source: Japan International Cooperation Agency