CHOCTAW, Mississippi — The Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians announces that it is joining the Tribal Land Conservation Initiative, a national program that enables Native American tribes to implement sustainable management practices to preserve their land, protect the environment, and create economic opportunities for their people. The Tribe will work with the non-profit National Indian Carbon Coalition (NICC) to protect approximately 25,000 acres of land in Mississippi while generating substantial income for its members through the creation of carbon credits.
“This is an exceptional program to benefit our members and the environment,” said Tribal Chief Cyrus Ben. “Land stewardship has always been important to our Tribe, and this emerging market gives us an invaluable opportunity to continue to protect and preserve our forested tribal lands.”
By employing effective land management practices that combine contemporary knowledge with proven traditional methods, tribes can manage their land to store more greenhouse gases than it releases into the atmosphere. The process, known as carbon sequestration, generates carbon offsets, which can be sold to socially responsible organizations through the voluntary carbon market. This project will be offered through the American Carbon Registry’s Improved Forest Management program.
The National Indian Carbon Coalition is an American Indian-led non-profit organization that helps tribes implement sustainable management practices, develop carbon projects, and partner with socially responsible organizations to achieve financial benefits for the tribe. “Our role is to be a trusted partner for the tribe,” said NICC program director Bryan Van Stippen. “We have been working closely with the Mississippi Choctaws to help them achieve their objectives. Carbon projects offer a unique opportunity for tribes to protect their land, preserve it for future generations, and earn long-term income.”
To learn more about the carbon credit market and the protection of tribal land, visit www.indiancarbon.org.
The Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, under the leadership of Tribal Chief Cyrus Ben, is the only federally recognized tribe in the State of Mississippi. With over 11,000 members, Choctaw lands cover over 35,000 acres in 10 counties. Providing permanent, full-time jobs for over 5,000 Tribal-member and non-Indian employees, the Tribe is a major contributor to the state’s economy. Learn more at www.choctaw.org.