The New Guinea rainforest is the third-largest tropical rainforest in the world, and still remains remarkably intact. Covered in rich evergreen forests that are home to over 1,500 species of amphibians, birds, mammals and reptiles, and over 11,000 species of vascular plants, forming part of the East Melanesian Islands Biodiversity Hotspot. Over 20 local languages are spoken on New Ireland alone, and the people retain strong Melanesian traditions of consensus, reciprocity, and the harmonization of diversity. The NIHT-Topaiyo REDD+ Project is the only operational, verified voluntary REDD+ project in Papua New Guinea. Covering substantial portions of the provinces of New Ireland and East New Britain, the project is a groundbreaking pilot that is bringing together 35 groups of customary land owners, the national Climate Change Development Authority, and the provincial governments to build a community-based REDD+ model with strong safeguards that can be replicated throughout the country.