Afognak Island Improved Forest Management and Logged Forest to Protected Forest

Location: Afognak Island, Alaska
Project Type: Improved Forest Management and Logged Forest to Protected Forest
Standard: Verified Carbon Standards (VCS) v3.0
GHG Emission Reduction: Approximately 100,000 metric tonnes per year


The coastal areas of Afognak Island are home to 200-year old forests, river otters, beavers, martens and ermines. Offshore in the coastal waters, sea lions and harbor seals swim in sight of humpback whales. This pristine environment also has an increasingly important environmental value: the old-growth trees sequester millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide. This creates a new resource opportunity for the forest and habitat based on their environmental benefits.
Afognak Island has retained large tracts of undisturbed native trees (180-250 years old) along with regenerated growth of trees over the past 30 years.  Afognak is also home to Alaska’s largest herd of elk, numbering approximately 900. The Afognak Forest Carbon Project represents over a decade’s worth of dedicated efforts by dozens of individuals, in partnership with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and the American Land Conservancy, to conserve a truly unique ecosystem in perpetuity. In 2008, this pioneering effort affected a shift from timber production management to conservation management across the five parcels that constitute the Afognak Project. The Afognak forest carbon project represents the first project of its kind in the state of Alaska.
  
Environmental Benefits
Prevents land disruption from timber logging.
Prevents GHG emissions from timber logging.
Restores and protects habitat for native plant, mammal, bird and fish species.

     

      

    Protecting Native Species
    Afognak is home to many species endemic to Alaska: Roosevelt Elk, Pacific Salmon, Steelhead, Rainbow Trout, Arctic Char, Dolly Varden, Kodiak Brown Bear, Bald Eagle, Marbled Murrelet, River Otter, Tundra Vole, Sitka-black Tailed Deer, Mountain Goat and Snowshoe Hare. The preservation of natural forest habitat is important for the continued survival of these species.
     
     
     Protecting Afognak’s History
     Kodiak bears and Native peoples co-existed
     for centuries on the island before the   towering Sitka spruce trees first took hold  some 800 years ago. The first European laid
     eyes on Afognak Island in 1741 and   Russian fur trappers soon followed.   Beginning in the 19th century, Americans   were increasingly concerned with the  destruction of wildlife and saw value in   conservation. Yosemite, Yellowstone and Afognak Island were seen as irreplaceable wilderness worth preserving. Thanks to President Theodore Roosevelt, in 1907, Afognak Island was officially designated as a National Forest. 

     

    How You Can Participate
    The activities associated with the conservation of this habitat are partially funded through the sales of carbon offsets, which are generated from the preservation of the Afognak Island forests in accordance with widely recognized and accepted methodologies. These offsets can be employed to

    counter the impact of your carbon footprint, all while ensuring that the conservation efforts of Afognak Island continue.