19 February, 2019

Vanuatu Foresters Association (VFA) Approved Proposal

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Forest Carbon Partnership Facility-Capacity Building on REDD+ for Forest-Dependent Indigenous Peoples in East Asia and the Pacific (EAP) and South Asia Region (SAR) Project (FCPF-CBP)

Sub-Project Title: Building the capacity of the Vanuatu indigenous forests dependent population to be aware of REDD+ and how they could adjust their socio-economic activities in order to enhance the carbon stocks and simultaneously adapt to impacts of climate change.
Vanuatu is a Y-shaped archipelago which lies in the western Pacific Ocean in the middle of a triangle formed by the Solomon Islands, New Caledonia and Fiji. The archipelago stretches approximately 1,400 km from north to south between the latitudes of 13 and 21° S and longitudes of 166 and 172° E and comprises more than 80 islands, 67 of which are inhabited, and 12 of which are considered major in terms of land area. The islands are of volcanic origin along with coral atolls.
Vanuatu’s total land area is about 12,190 km of which 36% has forest cover (>10m tree height), 43% is lower woody and mangrove vegetation and 21% in other land uses. The Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) covers an estimated area of 680,000 km2 and the country shares maritime borders with New Caledonia, the Solomon Islands, and Fiji.
The Vanuatu constitution states that all land and resources on the land belongs to the indigenous custom owners and their descendants and custom rules are the basis for the ownership and use of land and resources on that land. The landowners have the sole ownership of their land and are in the first place responsible for management decisions. Land cannot be alienated, but can be leased from the landholders for fixed periods and for agreed purposes. In the field natural features such as creeks and ridges normally mark traditional land boundaries of the various clan lots. Indigenous people are inseparable from their land as it provides them their basic needs such as water, food, shelter, fuel
wood, building materials as well as commercial benefits derived from sale of forest products. Most parts of Vanuatu land is inherited through patrilineal system but there are few areas that used matrilineal.
Vanuatu is one of the 57 so called small island developing states (SIDS) recognizes by the United Nations that the tropical islands are at risk of being severely affected by the current and anticipated impacts of climate variability and change, including both extreme events and gradual environmental changes. Already Vanuatu is struggling with the environmental problems such as land degradation, biodiversity losses, and coastal and marine pollution caused, inter alia, by population growth and urbanization as in addition to the common development challenges such as smallness, remoteness, and proneness to natural disasters.