Income diversification Potential for Farmers
Carbon farmers of Nepal carried out stakeholder consultations in different parts of Gorkha and Dhading districts to discuss the possibility and opportunities to implement Agro-forestry projects. The agro-forestry project aims to utilize the barren, fallow and unproductive lands by carrying out fruit-based plantation which in long term will provide income as well as agricultural produce for farmers. The project is also exploring the possibility of obtaining carbon credits by designing a Gold Standard certified project. The current activities have been financially supported by Carbon Farmers of Australia and Radicle Group company.
Stakeholder consultation was carried out in Chaibung of Dhading district. Farmers, representative from wards and cooperative members were present during the consultation. Detail discussion was carried out about the land use practice, cost-benefit ratio of current farming system and possibilities of fruit-based tree plantation as a better alternative. The participation of female farmers was impressive as they were actively engaged during the question-and-answer sessions. Farmers were also informed about the carbon farming opportunity and its co benefits. Farmers were very excited during the meeting and mentioned that they were never told anything about the carbon trading before.
Farmers were happy to carry out the plantations but they were also concerned about how to ensure the proper management of the plantations. Few farmers raised question on protecting the plantation from domestic animals and monkeys. Irrigation and lack of good varieties of trees were also a concern among farmers. A detail discussion was carried out on the concerned issue and how to tackle them.
Finally, a consensus was built among the farmers that they are willing to carry out the plantation activities if CFN is willing to provide support and guidance to carry out the activities and help register the project in Gold Standard so they can generate extra income through carbon credits. Farmers were also informed about their obligations and were reminded that though the revenue generated by credits is not that lucrative its co-benefits are way much higher than their expectation.
Currently a Project Design Document (PDD) is being prepared on behalf of farmers which will be sent for registration in Gold Standard by the end of August 2022.