Delivering conservation outcomes through community land management in Yaeda Valley
A new paper published in the journal PLoS One provides important evidence for the conservation impacts of Maliasili partners working with the Hadza hunter-gatherers and other local communities in Tanzania’s Yaeda Valley. The paper, titled ‘Land use, REDD+ and the status of wildlife populations in Yaeda Valley, northern Tanzania,’ finds that community-managed land use zones host a diverse wildlife assemblage, including elephants, lions, cheetah, and wild dogs, and that most wildlife are stable or increasing in these community lands.
This area is the site of long-term work carried out by Ujamaa Community Resource Team, which has helped the Hadza secure legal land rights over most of their remaining territory in the Yaeda Valley. In recent years they have worked with Hadza and Barabaig communities to secure a number of ‘CCROs’- communal land titles- that help connect Yaeda Valley with Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Building on this foundation of local land tenure and land use management, Carbon Tanzania has worked with UCRT to implement one of Tanzania’s first and most successful carbon credit projects with the Hadza in Yaeda Valley. Sales of carbon credits have generated more than $200,000 in direct payments to Hadza communities and village and district government bodies. These incentives help the communities to enforce their land use zones and have helped reduce deforestation by about 9% from the baseline level before the carbon project started. This improved management is a key factor in the conservation of the woodlands in Yaeda Valley, which this most recent paper helps verify through an examination of wildlife trends.