The ‘Save 80’ project in Lesotho is now certified under the Fairtrade Climate Standard, an innovative scheme developed by Fairtrade in partnership with Gold Standard – the leading certification standard for climate and development. Global logistics company Deutsche Post DHL Group, one of the first companies to commit to the Fairtrade Climate Standard, is financing the project. With many Fairtrade producers and communities already feeling the harsh effects of a changing climate, the project aims to improve living conditions for the communities in Lesotho, and to strengthen them against the impacts of climate change.
The ‘Save 80’ project has provided 10,000 energy efficient stoves for villages in Lesotho, a country which has lost two-thirds of its forests over the last 25 years due to the practice of cooking on open fires. If current use of firewood were to continue unabated, the country would be totally deforested within 15 years. Environmental consequences, such as erosion and crop failure, are already clearly noticeable.
The more efficient wood-burning stoves means that families are exposed to less smoke when cooking, and reduces firewood usage – and the resulting greenhouse gas emissions – by up to 80 percent.
The Fairtrade Climate Standard enables vulnerable communities in developing countries to reduce emissions while also strengthening themselves against the effects of climate change. The Fairtrade Minimum Price ensures the costs of running the project are covered, while an additional Fairtrade Premium is paid directly to the village communities to be invested in local climate adaptation initiatives of their choice. For businesses, Fairtrade Carbon Credits can help them take responsibility for any unavoidable emissions once they’ve done everything to minimize their carbon footprint.
Through purchasing Fairtrade Carbon Credits from the Lesotho ‘Save 80’ project, and by supporting other climate protection projects, Deutsche Post DHL Group is able to offset logistics-related greenhouse gas emissions for its customers as part of its climate neutral services. The project is being implemented in cooperation with the non-profit climate protection organization atmosfair and local partner Solar Lights.
Following a pilot phase, certification under the Fairtrade Climate Standard is now open to any producer group. A reforestation project in Peru, cookstoves for coffee communities in Ethiopia and a biogas project in India are among those currently working to get certified.
Source: press release Fairtrade, 17.01.2017