The Lower Zambezi claims to be the world’s first carbon neutral national park.
After a project with BioCarbon and the Lower Zambezi REDD+ Project, the Zambian national park says it is totally sustainable.
Two of the park’s camps, Chiawa and Old Mondoro Bush Camp bought carbon credits from the Lower Zambezi REDD+ project, using “internationally accepted values for fossil fuel use” in order to offset the carbon emissions both properties produce.
The project shares a massive boundary and the same eco-system as the Lower Zambezi, so the park claims it is not only offsetting its camps’ carbon emissions but also protecting trees, wildlife and habitat.
BioCarbon’s project REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) is a project that helps farming communities in Zambia improve their livelihoods, protect disappearing forests and create a sanctuary for globally threatened wildlife. The Lower Zambezi Community Forestry Project currently protects 100,000 acres of Miombo forest. Every camp within the national park is part of the project – including lodges on the outskirts.
Chiawa Camp and Old Mondoro also offer guests the opportunity to offset their own carbon emissions from their air travel via the website Stand For Trees.
By offsetting 1,200 tonnes of carbon emissions, Chiawa Camp and Old Mondoro say they are protecting an estimated 403 hectares of Zambian forest (approximately 3,228 trees), and removing enough CO2 from the atmosphere to be equivalent to taking 215 cars off the road for a year.
A spokesperson said: “The success of this project makes it a shining light for Africa’s sustainable tourism.”