Feasibility studies demonstrate potential for low carbon, climate resilient growth in Rwanda

Tea landscape

CIDT has completed a substantial and important six-month contract to produce seven studies underpinning a $50m proposal by the Government of Rwanda to an international finance organisation. The studies interconnect across three themes: sustainable forest management, landscape, and watershed management; climate resilient production of tea and coffee; and affordable, low carbon settlements and industries as growth hubs. CIDT led a team of fifty people in the feasibility studies.

The reports highlight that it is feasible to invest in developing five interlinked Low Carbon Climate Resilient (LCCR) value chains: tea, coffee, timber and forest products, agro-fired bricks, improved cook-stoves, charcoal, and house construction.

The studies found it feasible to: increase the resilience of tea and coffee production, land management and settlements to climate change; increase the range and supply of sustainable timber, fuel wood and non-timber forest products from improved management of forest resources and improve watershed management through soil stabilisation and agroforestry. It is also expected that the project will be able to create new woodlots along with improved energy efficiencies for tea processing at a tea factory.

Developed together in an integrated manner, for a particular geographical location, the developed value chains are expected to reduce dependency on imported construction materials with high levels of embodied carbon, increase forestry and agroforestry revenues, improve household energy efficiency and increase availability of and access to affordable, low carbon housing.

Additionally, it will be feasible to improve access to and capacity to use climate information and analysis by policy makers in decision-making and to promote an enabling environment for businesses and investors.

The Government is using these results to support a $50m proposal that demonstrates a model of accelerated growth and development based on the principles of low carbon, climate resilient (LCCR) growth and has been designed to strengthen the foundational capacities required for the ongoing replication of adaptation and mitigation strategies country-wide aligned to national green growth strategy.

The seven feasibility studies were carried out with sub-contractors Paul Watkiss Associates, Light Earth Designs, International Union for the Conservation of Nature, Songa Silvin, Venuste Ntaganda and MDY Legal. The studies were:

  1. Low carbon climate resilient settlements for rural (internally displaced people) and peri-urban settings
  2. Climate Resilience of Tea and coffee
  3. Sustainable Forest Management and Watershed Protection
  4. Economic and Financial Models
  5. Gender Study
  6. Environment and Social Impact Study
  7. Legal Study

CIDT Deputy Head of Centre and Project Manager Rachel Roland commented on the potential impact of these studies, “Building a funding proposal on the findings of these illuminating feasibility studies will give the Government a great opportunity to build on their world-leading work in climate compatible development. We’ve been glad to be able to contribute at this stage of the process.”

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