Large-scale REDD+ projects

To conserve the Paraguayan Chaco’s fast disappearing forest carbon sinks

hectares of native forest under REDD+ program
hectares were deforested in 2018 in the Chaco
carbon offsets capacity

The great importance
of the Gran Chaco

The Gran Chaco is South America’s second-largest native forest area and functions as one of world’s major carbon sinks. It is distributed largely between Paraguay and Argentina, whilst approx. 15% is made up between Bolivia and Brazil.

The tropical forest of the Chaco is one of the richest in terms of biodiversity, and is home to endemic and endangered animals species and indigenous communities who heavily rely on the forest for their existence.

Committed to Conserving the Paraguayan Chaco’s Forest

The Gran Chaco is no stranger to permanent forest destruction, and with one of the highest deforestation rates in the world, the Chaco forest is at immediate risk of collapsing.

Legal and irrevocable deforestation is happening at an incredible speed, with native Chaco forest being converted into cattle ranching and cropland. One bulldozer alone is able to deforest 1 ha. in a matter of two hours, resulting in the disappearance of 120 ha per day in each new cattle development. The threat is urgent as deforestation projects work 24/7,  in groups of up to 10 bulldozers at the time.

One of the world’s deforestation hotspots

Global GHG emissions are on the rise as a direct consequence of the deforestation of native forests. In fact, a quarter of all emissions worldwide are caused by deforestation, forest degradation and land use changes, incl. agriculture. Large-scale deforestation results in increased emissions and major loss of biodiversity.

The loss of the Gran Chaco

From 1985 to 2016 the Gran Chaco suffered a loss of 14.2 million ha. (an area the size of England) due to deforestation. During the same period, emissions from land-use change and forestry in Paraguay soared a 98% (WRI CAIT). During the past 10 years, 2.5 million ha. of the Paraguayan Chaco were lost to deforestation for cattle farming. In 2018 alone deforestation reached 255,000 ha. (INFONA). According to Paraguay’s National Forestry Institute (INFONA), in 2018 alone, a staggering 255,000 ha of Chaco forest were deforested. A recent analysis of economic drivers indicates the strong likelihood that all suitable forestland (i.e., forest not located within national nature reserves or private protected areas or reserved for indigenous communities) will have been deforested and turned over to cattle and/or soybean production by 2025, if not secured through the carbon financing from large-scale REDD+ projects.

REDD+ carbon projects

Quadriz is the project developer and proponent of Paraguay’s largest REDD+ project named Corazón Verde del Chaco Project, due to its location in the “Green Heart” of the Paraguayan Chaco.

This high-impact carbon project initially conserves 32,000 hectares (79,000 acres) of critical Chaco forest and is designed under two leading carbon standards known as the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) and the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Standard (CCBS) with Gold Distinction. Furthermore, the Project simultaneously preserves endangered species and a wide range of ecosystem services, provides an economic alternative to local communities, and mitigates the release of an estimated 5.6 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions over the first 10 years of the Project.

The Corazón Verde del Chaco carbon project is situated in Puerto Casado, Department of Presidente Hayes. The project is highly scalable and Quadriz has already identified and earmarked large adjacent areas of native forest under immediate threat of deforestation, which could be included under its REDD+ program.

In June 2023 the Project obtained its first VCS+CCB verification and subsequently issued its first VCUs of 2020 and 2021 vintages.

Quadriz’ REDD+ activities

Reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the agricultural conversion process

Sustain local and regional water quality by limiting nutrient and sediment inputs to local waterways which result from conversion of forest land to agriculture

Conserve fast disappearing stream, wetland, and forest ecosystems

Undertake local consultations and develop community projects

Protect local flora and fauna

Investing in REDD+ carbon projects that are able to scale is essential, and a USAID report on REDD+ outlines how the scalability of REDD+ in Latin America has proven to be a key element to large-scale conservation of forests and therefore reducing emissions.

REDD+ Corazón Verde del Chaco Project was verified and issued its first VCUs (Verified Carbon Unit) of vintages 2020 and 2021 in June 2023.

Get in touch with our sales team to discuss your offset needs and to request further project info.

Biodiversity in the Chaco

The Gran Chaco is a diverse biome of humid and semi-arid ecosystems, made up of riverine forests, wetlands, and savannas. The Chaco forest is home to 3,400 plant species, 500 bird species, 150 mammal species and 220 reptile and amphibian species, and Quadriz extensive biodiversity monitoring has already identified several vulnerable and endangered species living in the Project area, as listed on the IUCN red list, by not limited to:

Apart from the protection and conservation of important primary forests and wildlife corridors, such as the Jaguar corridor, Quadriz’ projects come with a wealth of additional co-benefits, and its REDD+ ‘Corazón Verde del Chaco’ carbon project has been validated for its contribution to 17 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

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Or are you a landowner?

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