Marrakech, Morocco – (November 16, 2016) President David Granger, today, met with Minister of Climate and Environment, Mr. Vidar Helgesen on the sidelines of the 22nd Session of the Conference of Parties (COP22) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) in Morocco. The President was accompanied at the meeting by Minister of Finance, Mr. Winston Jordan.
President David Granger and Head of the Department of the Environment, Ms. Ndibi Schwiers-Ceres in the COP22 Village.
President Granger said that he is satisfied that the dialogue is being advanced between the two countries and added that the agreement, over the last seven years, has been an important breakthrough for Guyana’s environmental management policy.
Minister Helgesen said in an official joint statement, which will be released by the two countries tomorrow, “We are proud to work with Guyana to realise its ‘green’ economy vision, maintain its deforestation rates as one of the lowest in the tropics and strengthen forest governance, as well as its commitments to a green energy transition.”
The meeting was conducted even as the two countries are negotiating an extension to the agreement, which will provide a more holistic approach to climate resilience action and environmental management under the ‘green’ state policy, inclusive of the Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS). In addition, Guyana is also seeking to secure payments already earned, but not yet transferred in the amount of US$40 million.
President David Granger, during the meeting.
Prior to the meeting with the President, Minister Jordan engaged in discussions with Mr. Per Pharo, Director of the Government of Norway’s International Climate and Forest Initiative, at the Norwegian Ministry of Environment where the two parties explored intended goals for the extension of the agreement. Guyana’s technical team attending the meeting included Head of the Department of the Environment, Ms. Ndibi Schwiers-Ceres, Ms. Janelle Christian, Head of the Office of Climate Change, Mr. Marlon Bristol, Head of the Project Management Office and Ms. Khandila Ramotar, Climate Change Officer in the Office of Climate Change.
President David Granger, along with Minister of Finance, Mr. Winston Jordan and the technical team during the meeting with Minister of Climate and Environment, Mr. Vidar Helgesen and Mr. Per Pharo, Director of the Government of Norway’s International Climate and Forest Initiative, at the Norwegian Ministry of Environment.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) of the agreement, which was signed in 2009 provides for performance-based payments, based on an independent verification of Guyana’s deforestation and forest degradation rates and progress on REDD+ enabling activities. REDD+ is a global initiative that aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.