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Tanzania's Hazdabe Protecting Traditional Forests with Carbon Trading

“Carbon,” says Mzee Sinze while sitting in the shade of an ancient, giant Baobab tree. “Carbon is very important to us Hadzabe.”

It’s not the answer one might expect from a tribal elder when asked why the forest is important to the hunter-gatherer Hadzabe tribe. But Sinze has a good reason for his statement.

“When you look around you see these beautiful trees and they belong to the Hadzabe,” he says. “From the mountains all around you can see the forest and this is because of carbon.”

Nestled between two rocky escarpments, the Yaeda Valley in Tanzania is home to the Hadzabe, one of the last remaining hunter-gatherer tribes in the world. The landscape is part of the Great Rift Valley that slices its way through much of the continent. Anthropologists believe the tribe has roamed the valley floor and surrounding acacia woodland for more than 40,000 years.

Angela Sevin

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