According to a report from Survival International, the Northern Kenya Grassland Carbon Project, a prominent carbon credits initiative in Kenya, faces significant problems. The report, titled “Blood Carbon: how a carbon offset scheme makes millions from Indigenous land in Northern Kenya,” suggests that the project could put indigenous communities in danger.
Despite potential risks to local communities, the Northern Kenya Grassland Carbon Project is anticipated to generate substantial profits, with estimates ranging from $300 to $500 million, and even more. The initiative has already secured the support of major corporate clients like Netflix and Meta.
It is run on land that is inhabited by over 100,000 indigenous people and is run by the Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT).
According to the new Survival International report, the Northern Kenya Grassland Carbon Project will see a sudden shift from local traditional grazing systems to a centrally controlled system that is similar to commercial farming.
This switch alone will mean putting a stop to the traditional migration during droughts, which has the potential of jeopardizing people’s food security.
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Other findings of the report include the NRT’s very likely failure to provide local communities with the correct information regarding the project and has certainly therefore completely bypassed receiving their free, informed consent.
Thus, most local residents have very little understanding of the carbon credits project and there is strong doubt of whether or not the project can even be considered legal.
Another major flaw that was unveiled by the report has to do with the quality of the carbon credits generated by the Northern Kenya Grassland Carbon Project, as it appears to not have a credible case for carbon additionality.
With this report, Survival International launches its campaign also titled ‘Blood Carbon’, which draws attention to the potential for human rights abuse resulting from carbon credits projects that not only take advantage of Indigenous peoples but are also entirely ineffective in the fight against climate change.