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Working together to mitigate climate change in Albania and Kosovo

07 Jul, 2017


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Working together to improve the use of forest resources, increase local employment and mitigate against climate change in Albania and Kosovo

Outgoing CNVP Supervisory Board member, Michel Farkas, his replacement, Thijs Van Buuren, and CNVP’s Executive Director, Ross Bull, recently visited Albania and Kosovo to observe field conditions where CNVP is currently working. Logistical support was provided by CNVP staff from the Kukes, Peje and Pristina offices.

On Saturday, 1 July 2017, the team visited Hasi Municipality in Kukes region of Albania to discuss the implementation and results of the Sida-funded Forestry Led Economic Development (FLED) project with partners, stakeholders and beneficiaries. In Hasi municipality, registration of forests and pastures of the Golaj and Fajza Administrative Units was completed in 2015 over 13,951 ha. In the targeted villages, 84 users have completed forest land border demarcation using traditional practices and participatory mapping. The team visited Golaj village where they met: the vice chairman of Golaj FPUA; a project beneficiary farmer; and representatives of the municipal Forest Service. Golaj FPUA has 89 members who have benefited from CNVP support in self-assessment for improving their FPUA structure, including reorganization through democratic elections and capacity building. Golaj FPUA now has 40% women’s participation on the board. CNVP Kukes has supported the establishment of producer groups of 10 women in Golaj and Fajza Administrative Units who collect medicinal herbs and forest fruits. Forest inventory is usually carried out by sampling stands throughout the forest area, and, in Kukes region, 51 plots have been measured.

On Sunday, 2 July 2017, the team visited Novoberda/Novo Brdo and Gjakova/Đakovica municipalities in Kosovo where they discussed the implementation and results of the Sida-funded Strengthening Sustainable Private and Decentralized Forestry (SSPDF) project with partners, stakeholders and beneficiaries. In Novoberda/Novo Brdo municipality, 32 families from three villages will benefit from joint forest management (JFM) on 32 hectares of public forest land over the next 10 years, equally distributed between the local Serbian and Albanian communities. Each family will be able to remove 7m3 annually from each ha of forest protected under the scheme. Together with the Kosovo Forest Agency, MAFRD’s Forestry Department, the municipalities and CNVP, beneficiaries will be helped to protect and regenerate their forests. A key partner in this process is the local "Parku" Association of Private Forest Owners which has 250 members of which 45 are active women, all of whom benefit from JFM and other Association activities. Participants include women owners involved in producing raspberries who aim to expand production once they have overcome the lack of cold storage facilities. Farkas, Van Buuren and Bull also visited a school in Dol village, Gjakova/Đakovica municipality where an innovative wood bio-mass heating system has been installed through the SSPDF project. The school’s sophisticated wood-burning boiler maximises the energy potential of wood chips, as well as minimises the environmental damage caused by smoke and toxic substances associated with the earlier use of diesel. Wood chips are supplied by the Association in Gjakova/Đakovica municipality which has been supplied with a chipping machine funded through the project.