Stopping emissions from deforestation in Cambodia

Forest rangers are protecting over 445,000 hectares of ridge-to-reef watershed to keep carbon safely locked away.

Image © Stand For Trees

Image © Stand For Trees

Key facts

Only One members are funding the reduction of 2,000 tonnes of carbon by helping preserve a 445,339-hectare watershed in Southern Cardamom.

The project is tackling climate change, saving species on land and in the water, and creating sustainable livelihood opportunities.

The terrestrial, freshwater, and coastal habitats are part of the Cardamom Mountains rainforest ecoregion, one of the world’s top 200 biodiversity locations!

Through our carbon reduction partner Stand For Trees, the project is certified by the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) and has achieved CCB Gold Level status for providing exceptional climate, community, and biodiversity benefits.

How the project works

1

Stand For Trees selects a project able to demonstrate robust positive impact on the environment and communities.

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2

The project saves a forest through activities like protected area management, stopping carbon emissions in the process.

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3

Independent auditors verify successes from the project.

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4

Carbon credits are issued from the project and people buy them through Stand For Trees, meaning the project receives funds to keep delivering results and healing the climate.

Project impact

All projects on Only One help save the ocean and fix the climate, and 100% of our members’ funds go to impact. Keep reading to discover how our “Stopping emissions from deforestation in Cambodia” project is having a positive effect.

Biodiversity and ecosystems

Stand For Trees’ project is located in Indo-Burma, one of 36 official biodiversity hotspots across the globe. The Southern Cardamom ridge-to-reef landscape is the largest climate regulator and carbon sink in the region, boasts wildlife habitat for countless species, and has 22 major waterways, making it a very important watershed. The flourishing forests are threatened by deforestation from illegal logging, fuel gathering, charcoal production, and land sales to outsiders. The project does an incredible job at solving this problem by helping local communities protect their environment, practice law enforcement, and develop alternative livelihoods connected to forests and biodiversity.

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Carbon reduction

In total, protecting and preserving the Southern Cardamom watershed will prevent 110 million tonnes of carbon emissions from entering our atmosphere. Stand For Trees achieves this by keeping trees — which store massive amounts of carbon dioxide — standing. Together, Only One members are reducing carbon in Cambodia by 2,000 tonnes, helping create a powerful alternative to deforestation and climate change. Southern Cardamom’s ecosystems include 2,000+ hectares of pristine mangrove forest, a “blue carbon” environment capable of storing four times as much carbon as rainforests on land!

Community development

Around 16,000 local people live in communities adjacent to the project and benefit from the healthy forests. Efforts in Southern Cardamom directly support 515 families in 12 villages through the provision of livelihoods. The majority of jobs are as forest rangers and in community-based ecotourism. The project is providing higher education scholarships, helping ensure permanent land access for all community members, and expanding its award-winning ecotourism programs, which have demonstrably raised incomes and reduced deforestation. Women hold 63% of management positions in the project.

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Project leaders

A team of 98 rangers and 25 anti-poaching community members patrol the Southern Cardamom forest and monitor activities. Acting as a watchdog for both government departments and frontline rangers, staff verify all law enforcement actions — for example ensuring appropriate penalties are imposed or seized timber is not stolen — and build ranger capacity through daily coaching. Forest rangers in Southern Cardamom confiscate over 1,500 chainsaws per year, equal to around five per day — each chainsaw would clear cut up to one hectare of trees every single day if it was not stopped!

Sowath Rethy has been working as a Wildlife Alliance ranger for six years. He was inspired to become a ranger because he wants to ensure Southern Cardamom’s forests and wildlife remain intact for future generations in Cambodia.

“Not everyone in the world wants forests and wildlife to be protected. Sadly, forests and wildlife are in danger and they have to be protected and preserved. If I can do it, I will help my country and the world.”
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Endangered species

Stand For Trees’ project has an unrivaled track record of stopping wildlife crime and protects vital habitat for significant populations of many IUCN Red List species. It offers refuge to 50+ endangered species, including Asian elephants, Asian black bears, sun bears, pileated gibbons, Bengal slow lorises, clouded leopards, and fishing cats, in addition to critically endangered Sunda pangolins, Siamese crocodiles, southern river terrapins, and giant ibises.

Sun bear · Stand For Trees

Sustainable Development Goals

Only One members’ funds go toward projects corresponding to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs our “Stopping emissions from deforestation in Cambodia” project supports are:

Project reporting

Stand For Trees will send Only One a bespoke annual report on how the carbon reduction project is progressing.

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More about our carbon reduction partner

Stand For Trees reduces people’s climate impact by saving 4.5 million hectares of tropical forest. They fight deforestation at its core, preventing mature, resilient trees from being chopped down. Stand For Trees’ projects make a difference not only to the climate, but also to the wildlife and communities that call forests home. They hold special certifications from the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) and Climate, Community, and Biodiversity (CCB) Standard. Stand For Trees is serious about protecting forests in the most legitimate and effective way possible, only making projects available for the purchase of carbon credits after they show proof of success — just like anything you might buy in a store.

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