By George Munene
Aspiration, a high-impact climate finance company, has announced a Sh2.6 billion ($21M) investment in carbon projects that will provide necessary support and training to 15,000 farmers in and around Lake Victoria Watershed in Western Kenya to plant 87 million trees, effectively creating 15,000 hectares of regenerative agroforestry land.
The restoration effort which will be conducted through the non-profit organization Trees for the Future (TREES) will generate 4.13 million Verified Carbon Units (VCUs) and help farmers adapt to the impacts of climate. A portion of the profits from the sale of the VCUs will be provided back to TREES and the farmers involved in the projects.
In addition to the VCUs produced, farmers are restoring the health and productivity of their land, improving soil health, and increasing biodiversity, dietary diversity, and income. This project will help farmers diversify the crops that they grow and sell from an average of two crops up to 24 crops.
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The average Forest Garden in this project will be made up of 5,800 trees per hectare, resulting in a total of 4.13 million metric tonnes of CO2 removed from the atmosphere over 20 years.
TREES is is a registered nonprofit based in the US and working across sub-Saharan Africa. To date, they’ve reached 41,000 farmers through the Forest Garden Approach.
“Part of our due diligence in assessing the carbon project partners we work with is a shared commitment to the pressing issue of deforestation and its impact on the environment, communities, and wildlife,” said Olivia Albrecht, CEO of Aspiration. “We are proud to partner with Trees for the Future, a proven leader in promoting reforestation and sustainable agriculture.”
Since its founding in 1989, TREES has planted over 300 million trees with farming communities around the world. Through their “Forest Garden Approach,” TREES teaches farmers to transform their land with thousands of fast-growing, ecologically appropriate trees and dozens of other crops, creating new possibilities for themselves and their communities.
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“Partnerships like the one we’ve developed with Aspiration are key to expanding our work to not only combat climate change but also improve the lives of farmers and communities in Kenya and beyond,” according to Trees for the Future Executive Director Tim McLellan. “We’re thrilled to partner with Aspiration and look forward to all the positive impact this partnership will bring to bear.”
Founded in 2013, Aspiration holds one of the largest portfolios of high-impact climate assets, with projects across the globe supporting nature-based carbon removal solutions. Through a rigorous vetting process backed by major independent carbon standards, the company carefully identifies, verifies, monitors, and reports on each project throughout its lifecycle. You can learn more about Aspiration at https://www.aspiration.com/.