Panama Canal Sustainable Forest Project

Restore Natural Balance to the Panama Canal.

The Panama Canal Authority restores and maintains natural balances of the Panama Canal Watershed, which is regularly degraded by non-native species. An unhealthy watershed ecosystem could mean contaminated water for over half of Panama’s population. The Sustainable Forest Cover Establishment project employs and supports local at-risk farmers to steward the watershed and make sure it remains healthy for generations to come.

Project Details

Panama Canal Watershed, Panama
CCBA Gold Standard
Annual Reductions
50,000 tCO2e

Ensuring Safe Water Supplies

The Panama Canal Watershed (PCW) has served as crucial ecological and social endeavor in Panama. Currently, more than 2 million people (approximately 54% of Panama’s population) get their water from the PCW. Before the program, the PCW area was covered by invasive, non-native species, which largely degraded the environmental condition and resiliency of the Watershed, including threats to the local plants, wildlife and water supply quality.

Healthy Biodiversity, Stronger Economy

In order to stop the spread of alien species, as well as to contribute to mitigating the effects of climate, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) developed this Project in 2011. Now, the Panama Canal Watershed is budding with increased biodiversity, a more stable ecological environment, and a variety of budding socio-economic opportunities for those communities living within the watershed, and who make their livelihoods from the watershed. The project protects 25 species of birds, 30 endangered species of wild mammals, and 112 reptile species.

Raising the Boats That Need it Most

The Project delivers sustainable management of the Panama Canal Watershed, the vital link to the functioning of the Panama Canal and its role in world trade. The Project also improves the quality of life for small subsistence farmers in the area, provides sustainable means of production, soil and water resource protection through the establishment and increase of vegetation cover in previously degraded areas, increases income in local communities through silvopastoral and agroforestry projects, which improve crop productivity, and increases wildlife protection and biodiversity conservation that lead to growth in sustainable ecotourism activities.

The Panama Canal Watershed contributes to 5 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).