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Kenya – Mangrove (Vanga Blue)♦

Located 110 km south of Mombasa on the Kenyan coast, the Vanga Blue Forest project is a shining example of community-driven conservation. Launched in 2019 and validated under the rigorous Plan Vivo Carbon Standard, this 20-year initiative is focused on the restoration and protection of 460 hectares of vital mangrove forests. These remarkable ecosystems act as natural carbon sinks, filtering water and protecting coastlines. By restoring and protecting these mangroves, Vanga Blue Forest plays a critical role in mitigating climate change.

Check out the latest information on the Vanga Blue project’s operational performance in the 2023 Annual Report. 

Benefits: Climate & Environment

Mangroves are nature’s powerhouses, providing a wide range of services and benefits to both the environment and the surrounding community. These incredible ecosystems are significantly more effective at sequestering and storing carbon dioxide than terrestrial forests. This is largely due to the quantities of carbon stored below ground in the mangroves’ root system. The unique environment of the surrounding water and water-logged soil can prevents the breakdown of this stored carbon for centuries, acting as a vital weapon in the fight against climate change.

Mangroves in Kenya have historically been exploited for building and energy resources. The Vanga Blue Forest project aims to turn the tide on this trend by halting further deforestation and degradation in the project area. The focus of this innovative project is two-pronged: stopping further deforestation; and actively restoring degraded areas. All this is done in a way that is measurable, reportable, and verifiable ensuring transparency and accountability.

The project encourages active community participation, enhanced by providing education in the sustainable development of the valuable mangrove ecosystem. By understanding the importance and benefits of healthy mangroves, these communities are empowered to become engaged stewards of their environment, ensuring its continued health for generations to come.

Benefits: Social & Economic

The project extends its reach beyond conservation by directly supporting essential community development initiatives. These include critical infrastructure projects like the construction of local access roads – Improved roads create a vital transportation network, enabling residents to more easily reach markets, schools, and healthcare facilities. This not only improves access to essential services but also opens doors for economic opportunities by facilitating the transport of goods and produce.

Recognising the importance of early childhood development, the project also supported the restoration of a water-logged children’s nursery. This provided a safe and nurturing environment for young learners, fostering a brighter future.

Furthermore, the project demonstrated its commitment to healthcare by constructing furniture for a local dispensary. This ensured a more functional and comfortable environment for both medical staff and patients, allowing for improved healthcare delivery within the community.

Project Verification

The Vanga Blue Forest project in Kenya is estimated to prevent the emission of a significant 4,560 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) per year. This impact comes from preventing deforestation, halting the degradation of existing forests, and planting new trees. Importantly, this estimate is conservative, meaning the actual benefit could be even greater. It excludes potential benefits from reversing past forest degradation and includes a 20% non-performance risk buffer to account for potential challenges. The project’s performance in its first year of operation (2020) was in line with expectations, with the issuance of 4,506 Plan Vivo carbon credits.

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