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PUMA goes carbon neutral by protecting lions in Kenya

PUMA, the sporting goods brand, and its parent company PPR will offset their 2010 carbon dioxide emissions by purchasing carbon credits generated through conservation of wildlife habitat in Kenya.

The deal, announced Tuesday, means that PPR is the first luxury products company to offset emissions by buying Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) credits certified under the Voluntary Carbon Standard.

PPR will offset 98,729 tons of carbon through the deal, which was signed with Wildlife Works Carbon, a carbon conservation outfit.

Earlier this year Wildlife Works Carbon became the first operator to win validation for REDD credits under the Voluntary Carbon Standard, a carbon accounting protocol. The credits are generated from the protection of 500,000-acres of forest in southeastern Kenya. Wildlife Works Carbon says the project will create a wildlife corridor that links two of Kenya’s largest protected areas — Tsavo East and Tsavo West. The area had previously been under threat from overgrazing, poaching and deforestation.

The project is funding construction of new schools, free health programs, and organic farming and agroforestry initiatives for local communities.

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