Guyana’s forests have potential to provide multi-billion US dollar services
In an address at COP27 earlier today, President Dr Irfaan Ali underscored the importance of leveraging the value of Guyana’s intact forests, especially in the worsening global climate crisis.
Head of State Dr Irfaan Ali, during a virtual address on the side-lines of the 27th Conference of the Parties in Egypt, boasted of Guyana’s strides in environmental protection.
He emphasised the tremendous value of Guyana’s forests, noting that it is one of few intact forests globally.
“With an estimated storage of 19.5 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent, the economic value of the ecosystem services which our forests alone provide have been estimated at between US$40 to 54 billion annually.”
This occurs as Guyana draws global support to leverage the value of this resource from the EU, who has signed an MoU to grant Guyana €5 million for forest protection activities.
The partnership aims to increase the area of protected, restored or sustainably managed forests, including mangroves, increase the number of forest-related jobs, maintain the close-to-zero annual rate of deforestation of natural forests and facilitate investment and trade in legal and sustainable wood products between Guyana and the EU.
President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, in brief remarks as a handful of countries inked similar partnerships, said the EU is committed to supporting countries whose resources can aid the fight against climate change.
“One of the main objectives if we speak about biodiversity and preserving the biodiversity of our planet is really to have a look at our green lands and our forests… this is not the end of something, this is the beginning of something.”
President Ali further highlighted that Guyana is a Net Carbon Sink, and now through the expanded Low Carbon Development Strategy Guyana will build a global model for forest climate services and other ecosystem services.
Guyana is being represented at COP27 by Minister of Natural Resources Vickram Bharrat.