The government has received €3,382,000 (Rwf 3.5 billion) from the Nordic Development Fund (NDF) to improve woodlot management, charcoal production and tree seeds quality.
The grant will help to implement the project ‘Improving the Efficiency and Sustainability of Charcoal and Wood fuel Value Chains’ in North-Western Rwanda.
The NDF grant will be managed by the World Bank and will benefit the Landscape Approach to Forest Restoration and Conservation (LAFREC) Project implemented by the Rwanda Environment Management Authority (REMA).
Some of the key activities that will be financed under the grant agreement are improved woodlot management, improved tree seeds quality, efficient charcoal production and promotion of alternative sources of energy.
The woodlot management part of the project will encompass forests in Gishwati-Mukura landscape. Building upon existing plans and training, the NDF-funded activities will initiate local planning of existing woodlots to improve management and increase productivity.
The project components also include strengthening cooperatives to improve charcoal production techniques as well as the value, quality and marketing of the charcoal produced.
Additionally, NDF will support the National Seed Centre in order to improve and diversify the tree seed pool. The final part of the project will target commercial tea factories' wood consumption and households’ cooking needs through analysis and promotion of sustainable alternatives.
“We are very grateful for the continued trust and support from our partners. This kind of strong multilateral collaboration is enabling us to achieve our agenda of a better and properly managed environment”, observed Coletha Ruhamya, director general of REMA.
“This grant will allow us to contribute more to increasing forest cover, improving wood fuel value chains, improving the quality of our tree seeds, creating jobs, increasing our country’s resilience to climate change and improving socio-economic welfare,” she added.
The project will be complete in December 2019.
LAFREC is a 5-year project to rehabilitate the highly-degraded Gishwati-Mukura landscape. The project is designed to demonstrate landscape management for enhanced environmental services and climate resilience. This will be achieved through the conservation of biodiversity, increased forest cover, climate change adaptation efforts together with combating land degradation and provision of livelihood alternatives to the impacted communities.
The Project is funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF) through the World Bank.