Carbon Removal Project

Halo Verde

Fundação Carbon Offset Timor (FCOTI) helps over 1000 small-scale farmers in Timor-Leste to plant trees, which sequester carbon and enhance soil carbon storage. This boosts biodiversity, mitigates climate change, and reduces soil degradation, while improving local livelihoods.

CARBON Removal Method

Forestation

REMOVAL TYPE

Nature based

Location

Timor-Leste

Launched

2011

Vintage year

2011-2019

Halo Verde

Overview

The Halo Verde - Timor Community Forest Carbon project was developed by FCOTI with technical support from Charles Sturt University (CSU) and local Timorese partners. The project, located in the central mountains of Timor-Leste, initiated activities in 2011, conducting reforestation activities with smallholders on their farms. The reforested area has been gradually incremented on a year by year basis reflecting the availability of resources.

To date, the project has planted approximately 75 ha in 151 sites, with the direct participation of 115 households benefiting more than 800 individuals. The project is aiming for a total reforested area of approximately 322 ha by the end of 2029. The project interventions consist of ecosystem rehabilitation and improved land management through reforestation and soil management, respectively. The project will span 30 years, including trees planted since 2011 and a payment period of 10 years of ex-ante credit sales. Some of the benefits to farmers participating in the project include income diversification from payments generated by the sold carbon credits, and from improvements in land productivity through agroforestry production and reduction of fertility losses from erosion and water run-off.

Reforestation activities have started to show the return of birds, small mammals and reptiles in areas where previously fauna was absent or scarce. The project is empowering the community through creating farmers’ groups, environmental educational campaigns and promoting other livelihood activities, including a female microfinance initiative and scholarships for secondary and tertiary local students, amongst other initiatives.

The climate benefits of the project were assessed using the Plan Vivo-approved SHAMBA (Small-Holder Agriculture Mitigation Benefit Assessment) model by calculating the changes to biomass and soil pools. The outputs from SHAMBA were also used to calculate carbon stored in harvested wood products. A baseline of 2.86 tCO₂e/ha and a 15% risk buffer were applied to the gross estimations accounting for a net climate benefit average of 247.4 tCO₂e/ha.

Halo Verde

Highlight

Key specific problems the project is addressing are part of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which correspond to Timor-Leste’s agenda on sustainable development (GoTL, 2017) including:

  • SDG 1: End of poverty through income generation and community livelihood diversification.
  • SDG 2: Zero hunger by introducing agroforestry systems (consumption and income) and promotion of organic soil fertility building activities.
  • SDG 4: Quality education through capacity building of local community members in natural resources management, biodiversity conservation, basic forest inventory and carbon monitoring. It is expected that with higher incomes, parents are likely to be in a better position to afford education for their children.
  • SDG 5: Gender equality by encouraging female participation and roles in the project, and by supporting the livelihood development of female participants through the “rural women micro grants” scheme.
  • SDG 13: Climate action by reducing deforestation and associated emissions and by increasing carbon stocks through reforestation. Project activities will also reduce the impact of droughts and torrential rains.
  • SDG 15: Life on Land by reversing soil erosion and degradation and reducing deforestation and biodiversity losses.

Tree nursery from one of the farmer participating in the project. Source: Klimate
Halo Verde

About

Fundação Carbon Offset Timor (FCOTI) is a local non-governmental organisation in Timor – Leste, founded by locals with the support of its longtime partner GTNT Group.

FCOTI was formally registered as a foundation at the Minister of Justice of Timor-Leste in October 2018 to undertake voluntary carbon offsetting initiatives that have been established in two rural villages of Timor-Leste, Laclubar and later Soibada, since 2009. Since its formal registration, FCOTI has partnered with local communities, government institutions and various other organizations such as GTNT, UNDP, GIZ, through GOPA, Interwork Group, Darwin initiative, Charles Sturt University, World Vision and local organisations such as RAEBIA to implement carbon offsetting projects.

  • Plan Vivo Foundation - The first Plan Vivo project developed in Timor-Leste and the first of its kind in South East Asia, the Halo Verde project builds lasting partnerships with Timorese farmers by working together on agroforestry, land restoration and sustainable agricultural practices. Certification of climate benefits and recent project expansion was possible thanks to a Darwin Initiative Grant from the UK government.

FCOTI and Klimate employees measuring trees as part of a feasibilty study with the European Space Agency (ESA). Source: Klimate
Halo Verde

Vision

FCOTI’s vision is to grow communities for a world living in. Their mission is to address and avoid climate change impacts through community reforestation activities and sustainable socioeconomic development activities, including carbon credit sales.  FCOTI’s objectives:

  1. To economically empower local community groups in the Laclubar Sub-District through the linkage between their reforestation activities and the voluntary carbon offsetting scheme of interested companies and individuals in Australia and the private sector in other developed industrialised countries.
  2. To protect watershed areas through tree planting, soil restoration, moisture retention, livestock management and improved land burning practices.
  3. To raise the awareness of the local communities in the Laclubar Sub-District of the importance of sustainable environmental protection and sustainable land management.
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