The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment has launched a carbon credit program that the government hopes will encourage communities around the country to preserve and expand their forests.
According to Natural Resources and Environment Minister Varawut Silpa-arch, Ban Khong Taban in Phetchaburi province was the first community to join the campaign.
The village, which joined the Thailand Voluntary Emission Reduction Program in 2015, has around 1,397 rai of land. Residents conserve the local forests with assistance from the Royal Forest Department, Kasetsart University, the Mae Fah Luang Foundation and the independent electricity producer Ratch Group.
As demand for carbon credits increases on the world market, particularly among industrialized nations, Varawut said carbon trading systems could also be a substantial source of income for local communities.
Ban Khong Taban in particular has been certified to hold 5,259 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2E), making it a prime candidate for the project.
Ratch Group has so far committed to purchasing the credits for a minimum of 500 baht for each CO2E ton, with a share of the total revenue earmarked for forest preservation and protection.
Surachai Achalaboon, chief of the Department of Royal Forest, meanwhile said the department would push the carbon credit scheme to over 12,000 other communities around the country. (NNT)