Guyana sign first sale agreement on carbon credits

Speaking at the Guyana Oil and Gas Energy Chamber’s Annual Awards and Induction Ceremonial Dinner on Wednesday, Vice President Dr Bharrat Jagdeo said Guyana will be the only country in the world that will boast the Architecture for REDD+ Transactions (ART) credit.

“We quickly work on an expanded Low Carbon Development Strategy and in 2020, the US and others through the LEAF Coalition and then the Architecture for REDD Plus transaction was established and we made an application for them to certify our credit.
“We had gone to the market already; we had a request for proposals, we have received those and the first sale will take place. So that will be credit all the way from 2016, because those were the legacy credit that we applied for and hopefully it will bring in billions of US dollars,” he explained.

Guyana’s completion of the ART process paves the way for other governments which are looking to receive carbon-market finance for success in protecting and restoring forests. Currently, 14 other countries and large sub-national jurisdictions are working toward their own issuances of TREES credits.

Frances Seymour, the Chair of the ART Board, congratulated the Government of Guyana and the many domestic stakeholder groups who contributed to this achievement, which recognises the success the country has had in protecting its forests.

“Guyana is the first to complete the ART process for generating high-integrity, Paris Agreement-aligned carbon credits that will allow the country to access market-based finance to continue to implement forest-stewardship strategies. ART, other governments, and important stakeholder groups, especially Indigenous Peoples and local communities around the world can now build on Guyana’s experience to accelerate progress towards meeting global forest and climate goals in ways that ensure environmental and social integrity,” Seymour said.

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Guyana’s TREES credits are also the first market-ready credits issued to a jurisdiction classified as “High Forest, Low Deforestation” (HFLD), which means it has high forest cover and low historical rates of deforestation.

Carbon markets have historically focused predominantly on areas that have already experienced high rates of deforestation. This is now starting to change with the first TREES credits issued to Guyana.

“Prior to the crediting approach in TREES, there had not been a market-oriented approach that allows HFLD jurisdictions to benefit from carbon market finance. The HFLD crediting approach in TREES recognises that HFLD jurisdictions must continue to aggressively protect forests to avoid deforestation and degradation, and that carbon market finance can be a powerful incentive to help achieve this,” ART said, adding that all HFLD credits are tagged as such on its public registry.

Dr. Jagdeo noted too, the need for the oil and gas resources to help on the adaptation side, for Guyana to be more climate resilient. The vice president reminded of government’s support for net zero and the removal of subsidies from fossil fuel production and air decarbonisation.

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