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SMALLHOLDERS IN KENYA ARE GETTING REWARDED FOR DOING THINGS THE RIGHT WAY

29th Jan 2014 – Smallholder farmers in western Kenya are now benefiting from carbon credits generated by improving farming techniques, according to a report from Development Diaries. These are the first credits worldwide issued under the sustainable agricultural land management carbon accounting methodology.

The Kenya Agricultural Carbon Project (KACP) involves 60,000 farmers on 45,000 hectares to support farming that is more productive, sustainable and climate-friendly. The farmers are now using a wide range of methods to increase the organic matter in soils. In the long term, this should improve the soil’s water absorption, nutrient supply and biodiversity, and help prevent erosion. Better soils raise farm yields, improving food security and making agriculture more resilient to climate change.

The credits represent a reduction of 24,788 metric tons of carbon dioxide, which is equivalent to emissions from 5,164 vehicles in a year.

Diarietou Gaye, World Bank Country Director for Kenya is quoted as saying “This is an inspiring example of how agricultural practices that improve the productivity and livelihoods of smallholder, subsistence farmers can also be climate-smart”

The BioCarbon Fund’s pioneering SALM methodology spells out how carbon sequestration in soils is measured and engages farmers themselves in the monitoring process, helping farmers to measure the impact of their agricultural practices on crop yields.

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