Holistic Conservation Programme for Forests: a REDD+ programme aimed at Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD) and increasing forest carbon stocks (+).


  • Launched: Oct. 2008 / Duration: 9 years / Budget: 9,5 M€
  • Field partners: Etc Terra, WWF, Agrisud, GoodPlanet Foundation, local universities, international research institutes, Symrise company
  • Financial partners: AIR FRANCE and AFD/FFEM




Diademed sifaka © Etc Terra

The fight against deforestation, which accounts for 17.4% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions (GIEC, 2007) has been at the heart of international negotiations since the Bali Conference in 2007.
The island of Madagascar is recognized worldwide for offering a unique level of biodiversity. This natural resource has nevertheless been threatened by deforestation at a rate of 0.53% per year between 2000 and 2005. This means a net loss of approximately 50,000 hectares of natural forest each year. This is mainly due to the combination of population growth (more than 3% / year) and traditional slash-and-burn cultivation. However, the techology and methodologies exist to reconcile forest conservation and food security in Madagascar.
It was in this context and with these goals in sight that Yann Arthus-Bertrand, chair of GoodPlanet, and Jean-Cyril Spinetta, the then chair of Air France-KLM, laid the foundations of the HPCF project in 2006. The WWF then became involved as field operator and Madagascar was finally chosen as the location for implementing the project. The official launch took place in Antananarivo in September 2008 with the objective of tackling deforestation by helping local communities to improve their management of natural resources and to develop sustainable alternatives to deforestation.




Phase I (Oct. 2008 - Dec. 2012) : 

PHCF beneficiaries © Etc Terra

Right after its launch, the project was affected by a political crisis which broke out in Madagascar in February 2009 and which is still ongoing. For security reasons, the WWF field missions had to be suspended for several months. The situation stabilized in mid-2009 but some regions (south) remain unsafe. The crisis also had an impact on partner institutions which in some cases had to suspend international aid.
However, as of October 2009, the project was implemented in all the regions, despite additional challenges, including cyclone Hubert, territorial conflicts between communities, and high rates of illiteracy in the south.


Landscape of the northern highlands © Etc Terra

The first phase was completed in December 2012, enabling HPCF to initiate both the conservation of forests and the assessment of potential climate change mitigation.

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Phase II (Jan. 2013 - Oct. 2017) : 

Launched in January 2013, phase II aims at extending and enhancing the results achieved during the first phase and will place particular emphasis on practical alternatives to deforestation/degradation with the support of rural development professionals (NGOs and private companies) who will join the Etc Terra/WWF team in the project.

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