making the carbon market work for poor communities

Carbon in Africa

Not considering a specific standard, 2% of all voluntary projects in the world are based in Africa. The majority of projects dealt with forestry, of which REDD projects generated 58% of all credits transacted. There have been voluntary projects in eleven African countries, of which South Africa and Mozambique are located in Southern Africa.

Around 2% of the CDM projects (compliance market) are located in Africa. The majority of these projects are large scale.

Only a handful of projects that are pro-poor and household scale are located in Southern Africa.

It can be said without a doubt that the number of pro-poor projects in Southern Africa is very small, both in the compliance market and in the voluntary market.

There are multiple obstacles to implementing carbon projects in Africa:

  • There has been a lack of involvement from the private sector, weak initiative-taking on behalf of most African governments, and a general reluctance by local banks to provide financing;
  • The continent has relatively low greenhouse gas emissions.¬†Project developers have focused on other regions. Project experience is now largely absent;
  • The CDM complexity does not benefit the African context, and Designated Operational Entities (DOE, an independent auditor) are usually not situated in Africa.
  • Knowledge and skills is often limited. Technical assistance is often concentrated to a few individuals per country;
  • Institutional barriers due to weak capacity and architecture of Designated National Authorities (DNA).