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Mitsubishi offsets carbon footprint through investment in Madagascar's rain forest

In an effort to offset the carbon footprint of its environmental education exhibit, 'Mitsubishi Pavilion @Earth,' debuting at the 2005 Aichi World Exposition, Mitsubishi Group has provided financial support to help protect rain forests in northeastern Madagascar, the island country located off the coast of Southern Africa. This initiative will offset Mitsubishi's carbon impacts by preventing the release of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere through the protection of a portion of Makira's threatened forests - which naturally store carbon - and by supporting sustainable activities of local communities in the region.

The carbon offset financing deal was developed through a unique partnership between Natsource Japan Co. Ltd., representing Mitsubishi, and Conservation International (CI), acting on behalf of the Government of Madagascar. The investment will help fund the Makira Forest Project which is managed by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). This initiative was developed by WCS in partnership with the Government of Madagascar and CI to reduce the deforestation rate of Makira, prevent species extinctions, work with local communities to develop sustainable activities that provide alternative approaches to slash and burn agriculture, and demonstrate a viable market for some of the forest's ecosystem services.

"The Expo is very meaningful, however, it is inevitable that big events like these produce additional greenhouse gas emissions. Thus, offsetting the additional greenhouse gas emissions in another part of the planet is environmentally responsible. I truly hope that carbon offsets like these become customary. The project in Madagascar contributes not only to the protection of the rain forest, but also to the sustainable development of the local community. I feel projects like these are worthy of support by our pavilion " said Mr. Naoyoshi Yamakawa, Director General of Mitsubishi Pavilion @Earth.

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Contact: Jason Anderson
j.anderson@conservation.org
202-912-1464
Conservation International
21-Mar-2005


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