Conservation International Reports High Demand for Blue Carbon Credits from Cispatá, Colombia Mangrove Project

June 23, 2022

The “Vida Manglar” mangrove forest project became the first to issue blue carbon credits last year; new round of credits expected in 2023

Cispatá, Colombia (June 23, 2022) – Conservation International today issued its inaugural impact report for the mangrove project in Cispatá, Colombia, known locally as Vida Manglar. Last year, the mangrove forest became the first to enter the carbon market with its carbon stores fully calculated and verified as blue carbon credits.

The report reveals that 100% of Vida Manglar’s available carbon credits have been sold or are currently in the process of being traded. A full 92 percent of the funds generated from these sales will be invested back into Vida Manglar’s conservation management plan – generating a reliable source of financing to protect the mangroves and support the communities that rely on them.

Finally, the report also confirms that the project is expected to issue a new round of carbon credits in 2023 and that the government of Colombia is seeking to replicate this successful flagship project in six other locations along the Caribbean coast – scaling it up into a national program and bringing the concept of market-driven conservation to new areas.

Meaning “Mangrove Life” in English, the Vida Manglar project began in late 2018 with support from Apple, along with INVEMAR Research Institute, the Omacha Foundation, and Colombia’s environmental authorities CVS and CARSUCRE alongside Conservation International and local communities. In early 2021, Vida Manglar began selling Verified Carbon Units on the international carbon market.

“This impact report shows a high demand for blue carbon credits, which are still new to the voluntary carbon market,” said Maria Claudia Díazgranados Cadelo, Director of Conservation International’s blue carbon program. “To have nearly all credits from the first issuance sold in just under one year is very encouraging, and its success should serve as a green light to other organizations or communities considering similar projects around the world.” 

The Vida Manglar project is the first mangrove forest to fully account for the carbon stored both above water, and below it. Mangrove forests are a powerhouse for carbon storage. In a single square mile, they hold as much carbon as the annual emissions of 90,000 cars. If they are destroyed, all that carbon will be released, contributing to climate change.

The project’s 11,000-hectare (27,000-acre) mangrove forest is expected to sequester nearly 1 million metric tons of carbon dioxide over its 30-year lifespan – roughly equivalent to taking 184,000 cars off the road for one year. Cispatá Bay’s five species of mangroves provide habitats for migratory birds, sea turtles, manatees, otters and American crocodiles, known locally as needle-nose crocodiles.

“Around the world, demand for blue carbon outweighs the supply quite significantly,” said Jennifer Howard, Senior Director of Conservation International’s blue climate program. “The results from our work in Cispatá will offer important proof of concept, which is needed to build investor confidence and demonstrates the value of high-quality blue carbon offsets.”

The Vida Manglar project’s carbon stores were fully certified in 2021 using the Verified Carbon Standard and the Climate, Community & Biodiversity Standards developed by Verra.

Read more on Conservation International’s blue carbon efforts here.


About Conservation International: Conservation International protects nature for the benefit of humanity. Through science, policy, fieldwork and finance, we spotlight and secure the most important places in nature for the climate, for biodiversity and for people. With offices in 30 countries and projects in more than 100 countries, Conservation International partners with governments, companies, civil society, Indigenous peoples and local communities to help people and nature thrive together. Go to for more, and follow our work on Conservation News, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Instagram and YouTube.

Related Content

Download the full report as a PDF:

Cispata Bay Mangroves 2022 Impact Report