Virunga National Park, Congo - Climate action with hydropower
Preservation of the habitat for the last mountain gorillas in the wild
The Matebe hydropower project in Virunga National Park in the Congo finances a run-of-river power plant to supply the local population with electricity from renewable energies. Hydropower replaces the generation of energy from charcoal and the associated deforestation of the local rainforest and thus the destruction of the habitat of the mountain gorillas.
Virunga National Park, D.R. Congo
PEOPLE WHO BENEFIT FROM THIS PROJECT:
approx. 5.000 households and small businesses
TÜV NORD CERT GmbH, Carbon Check (India) Private Ltd.
Verified Carbon Standard (VCS)
APPROX. 46.000 t CO2
PROTECTED ANIMAL SPECIES:
PROJECT DOCUMENTATION: https://registry.verra.org/app/projectDetail/VCS/1716
- Protection of the habitat of mountain gorillas and other threatened animal species
- Economic development through electricity in one of the poorest regions in the world
- Clean energy from hydropower plants supplies around 5,000 households and many small businesses
- Creation of numerous jobs and new small businesses
- Spread of clean technology, further hydropower plants planned
- More safety through street lighting in the villages
- Generating electricity from a renewable source with minimal environmental impact
- Saving about 46,000 tons of carbon emissions per year
- Alternative jobs to the illegal coal trade
- Weakening of militias for more peace in the region
About a third of the last mountain gorillas live in the wild in the Virunga National Park. 600 rangers protect the area from armed militias who are enriching themselves with natural resources, animals and wood for trading in charcoal. The illegal exploitation is a million dollar business and finances a cruel civil war. More than 160 rangers lost their lives in the process.
The charcoal from trees in the Virunga is the only source of energy for many, 97 percent of the population live without electricity. Without alternatives to charcoal, the forest will be cleared in ten years. This is why our climate action project was developed: a small run-of-river power plant with an output of 13.26 megawatts. In the meantime, 5,000 households and many new small businesses have already been connected to the local power grid - a basic requirement for economic development and, as a result, for more stability and peace in the region.
How does climate action work with hydropower?
Hydropower is one of the oldest forms of energy generation and follows a simple principle. All you need is water and a slope. The kinetic energy of the water drives a turbine and is converted into energy by a generator. The Matebe project is
a run-of-river power plant and it uses the natural flow velocity of the river. Since run-of-river power plants do not require a dam or reservoir, they are a good compromise between the use of natural potential and the lowest possible environmental impact.
The amount of emissions saved is calculated using the so-called baseline method: how much carbon emissions would the same amount of energy cause with the usual local electricity mix?
Every contribution counts!
Affordable and clean energy
from hydropower plants for 5,000 households
Fight against deforestation and preserve the habitat for native animals
Creation of numerous jobs and small businesses
Weakening of militias for more peace in the region
Contribution to the UN sustainability goals
Project Quality standard
VCS – Verified Carbon Standard
The Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) is the leading global standard for the certification of emission reductions from forest protection projects. These emission reductions must be real, measurable, permanent, additional, checked by independent third parties and calculated conservatively.