National launch of USAID Trees Outside Forests in India (TOFI) program

TOFI is a five-year program that aims to significantly expand the area under Trees Outside Forests, while bringing inclusive environmental and livelihood benefits. It is a joint program of USAID and the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change of the Government of India, being implemented by a consortium of nine organizations led by CIFOR-ICRAF. This program seeks to strengthen enabling environments to improve regulations and policies for trees outside forests; increase access to finance, quality planting materials and value-chain support; bridge gaps in technology and market info through data, monitoring and decision tools.

TOFI’s overall goal is to significantly expand the area under TOF for enhancing both livelihoods and ecosystem services, especially carbon sequestration. Indeed, TOFI is expected to directly and indirectly contribute to expanding the area under TOF cover by an equivalent of 700,000 and 1,400,000 hectares, respectively, resulting in a 60% increase in such cover in the participating states and a projected sequestration of 210 million metric tons of CO2e gases. Implemented by a consortium led by the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) and World Agroforestry (ICRAF), the program will be implemented in seven states including Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Haryana, Odisha, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, and Uttar Pradesh.

On September 8, 2022 the Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change, Government of India and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), officially launched the program, “Trees Outside Forests in India” and NCCF was also participated in this program as one of the consortium partners.  Secretary for Environment, Forest, and Climate Change, Ms. Leena Nandan, U.S. Chargé d’Affaires Patricia A. Lacina highlighted the U.S.-India cooperation on climate change and forestry. USAID’s forestry activities in India support important priorities of the U.S. and Indian governments, contributing to the Forestry Pillar of the Climate Action and Finance Mobilization Dialogue in support of the U.S.-India Climate and Clean Energy Agenda 2030 Partnership.