Shaan Foundation

Carbon Neutral Villages


The Bhartipur Gram panchayat (here after called GP) has successfully implemented four key innovations to achieve the target of net zero carbon village.

1. The algae ponds as carbon recycling and carbon sink-
* Pond in the village was made in 2008-09 with estimated cost of 3lakh. * The pond has parent culture of blue green algae which acts as active carbon sink for village, serving as bigger carbon sink than trees.
* At the ponds Farmers are being made aware by the Rit foundation (an organisation with subject matter expertise) about using the blue green algae in paddy crops to ensure nitrogen fixation.
* At the ponds in small chuapals Community is also being made aware about economical benefit of Blue green algae and its immense health benefits like superfood Spirulina.
* We will also be doing a third party audit of our entire model by established carbon audit firm.
* Trees and algae sequester carbon dioxide naturally. Algae absorbs” the carbon in the form of more algae. Algae can consume more carbon dioxide than trees because it can cover more surface area, grow faster.

2. Check dam : protecting soil organic carbon with carbon recycling through aquatic plants
*GP has a check dam which has built in 2009-10 by Block panchayat with a cost of 809662, It been used to protect top soil run off and preserve soil organic carbon.
* Under the guidance of the subject expert organisation Rit foundation farmer pathshala have been organised and farmers have taken the stored soil organic carbon to use in their farms.
* Check dam saves soil organic carbon worths lakhs every month and then it’s used by farmers as organic manure to increase their SOC.
* Farmers have been made aware about the importance of aquatic plants to promote their use in farm ponds.
* Check dam also has aquatic plants which are low in carbon emission and also used as cattle feed thus recycling the carbon. This innovation will not just help village in becoming carbon neutral but also promote circular economy and bring down the cost of maintaining cattle.
* GP has also done various community awareness programmes to preserve the check damn and stream by terming it as shared wealth of GP.

3. Tree banking : the community led carbon sink initiative
* The GP has ensured that members of community adopt trees and monetise the tree preservation by giving a fixed amount for its preservation to villagers.
* Under the initiative villagers will be getting 5/- per tree every month, for 50 trees they will preserve in 5 years they will amount of 15000 rupees which will provide them additional money.
* This will add 2,70,000 in the GDP of village by the virtue of this cash payment and will have exponential impact in terms of behavioural nudge.
*The approach has not just provided additional income to villagers but also made it a community movement raising awareness about joint forest management among community.

4. The solar village : grid of future
* The solar plant was established in 2013-14 by OMC limited with 5217880/- cost which has since then been used by villagers.
* The GP upholds user pay principle by giving 100rs for 15 kwatt to company their by making it sustainable.
* Village has been using the electricity from the solar grid making it carbon positive in Terms of not using coal made electricity.
* Villagers has been sensitised about the green electricity and it’s monetary benefits.
* GP has been also motivating villagers for net metering making it economically sustainable and rewarding.