WCSPNG is implementing a Village-REDD+ demonstration activity on Manus Island inthe largest remaining area of forest in the Admiralty Islands. REDD+ (“ReducedEmissions from Deforestation and Degradation” with the “+” referring tosustainable forest management, enhancement of carbon stocks, and conservation)is a new approach to conserving tropical forests in Papua New Guinea and aimsto protect the carbon in PNG’s forests by working with individual clans andcommunities in order to bundle these areas into administratively andeconomically viable units (follow thislink for more on this topic).
A key part of the REDD+ work in Manus Provincehas been clan mapping; with the boundaries of these clan areas being accuratelymapped for the first time with GPS units and satellite imagery. At a recentvillage meeting at Tulu 1, on the north coast of Manus, WCS staff handed overthe initial results of the clan boundary mapping to members from individualclans. The resulting maps were pored over in detail by the Tulu 1 clans, withpeople being able to see traditional clan boundaries overlaid on accuratecontour and relief maps of the area.
The resulting maps will be used to betterunderstand the forests types, land uses and other resources such as carbonstocks found in the customary land area. Conservation planning by the localcommunity will prioritize long-term planning for resource use; for exampleidentifying key forest areas that will remain untouched, forest areas wherelimited cutting for building materials will be allowed, and areas whererotation cutting and clearance for gardens will be based.