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Norway announces fourth payment to Guyana for climate services and continued low deforestation

Will transfer US$80 million for Amaila Falls; President Ramotar to address the nation later today

In Oslo, at 10:00 Guyana time this morning, the Norwegian Government made the following statement:

"The Guyana-Norway climate and forest partnership continues to make significant progress. In 2012, Guyana kept deforestation and forest degradation at very low, though increased, levels. Based on this result, combined with improvements in forest governance in 2012-13, Norway today announces that it will contribute 35 million USD to the implementation of Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy.

Since 2009, Norway has been contributing to Guyana’s efforts to enhance economic development while maintaining over 99.5% of its 185 000 square kilometer forest. Today’s announcement of a US$35 million payment to Guyana is based on Guyana’s deforestation rate in 2012 as well as the country’s progress on indicators that will enable agreed goals for forest governance."
After today’s announcement, Guyana has now earned US$150 million in payments from Norway since the partnership started. The accumulated payments are being invested by Guyana in its Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS).

Approximately US$70 million of this has been deposited by Norway in the Guyana REDD+ Investment Fund (GRIF) which is channeling investment into seven LCDS projects - see Table 1.

Approximately US$5.8 million was channelled to Guyana's Forestry Commission. According to the Norwegian Government: "Over the past year, Guyana has delivered a report on deforestation and forestation degradation that meets international standards... Guyana's progress in this area continues to be impressive."

The Norwegian Government also announced that it plans to transfer US$80 million to the Inter-American Development Bank, to be used as Guyana's equity contribution to the Amaila Falls Hydro Project.

In welcoming the announcement, the President of Guyana HE Donald Ramotar said: “Guyana is on the threshold of achieving what few countries in the world have achieved. International authorities have validated Guyana's strong standards in maintaining our forest. We are now getting back on track with our work to build Amaila Falls and deliver cheap, reliable, clean energy for all Guyanese. We are creating new jobs in low carbon sectors across the country - and we are investing in critical infrastructure to help us cope with future floods as a result of climate change. ”

Tine Sundtoft, Minister of Climate and the Environment in Norway, said: “Guyana’s ambitious goal is to enhance economic growth while preserving the rainforest. I am happy that Norway can contribute to Guyana’s green development through our partnership on forest. Guyana’s deforestation is one of the lowest in the world. The goal of the partnership with Guyana is to keep it that way.”

President Ramotar will make an address tonight setting out more details about today’s announcement.

Further details and next year’s indicators for enabling the agreed goals of the Guyana-Norway partnership can be found here: http://www.regjeringen.no/en/dep/kld/Whats-new/news/2014/Norway-announces-new-contribution-to-Guyana-for-its-continued-low-deforestation-.html?id=772667

TABLE ONE: LCDS PROJECTS RECEVING FUNDING FROM PAYMENTS RECEIVED BY GUYANA FROM NORWAY

PROJECTS IN IMPLEMENTATION

US$ / M

Amerindian Land Titling - seeks to enable Amerindians to secure their lands and natural resources with a view towards sustainable social and economic development. Titling of communities will strengthen land tenure security and expand the asset base of Amerindians.

10.8

Amerindian Development Fund (Phases 1 and 2) - supports the socio-economic development of approximately 187 Amerindian communities and villages through the implementation of their Community Development Plans. Phase 1 of the project provided funding and technical assistance to 26 villages and is near completion. Phase 2 has commenced implementation. 

8.2

Micro and Small Enterprise Development  - addresses two of the major bottlenecks that constrain the development of micro and small enterprises and the ability of vulnerable groups to build alternative livelihoods, which are limited access to finance, and limited technical and business skills.

5.1

Climate Resilience Strategy and Action Plan - establishes a climate resilience framework for Guyana that addresses direct and indirect impacts associated with extreme weather events, as well as emerging, indirect, slow-onset climate impacts and hazards.

0.5

Monitoring Reporting Verification System Development - further builds capacity in the Guyana Forestry Commission to carry out forest cover and change monitoring and forest carbon monitoring/measurement in fulfilment of the MRVS Roadmap.

1.9

Institutional Strengthening (Phase 1) - enhances national institutional capacity in Guyana to address the impacts of Climate Change, ensure the effective implementation of the LCDS, and help Guyana meet its commitments under interim REDD+ partnerships.

6.4

LCDS Outreach and Communication - aimed at increasing understanding and awareness on climate change and Guyana’s LCDS, both nationally and internationally.

1.2

Sub-Total

34.1

PROJECTS IN DEVELOPMENT

 

Amaila Falls Hydropower Project - is the flagship of Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy. Amaila will deliver a steady source of clean, renewable energy that is affordable and reliable and is envisioned to meet approximately 90% of Guyana’s energy needs while removing dependency on fossil fuels.

80.0

Cunha Canal Rehabilitation - will improve the drainage capacity of the East Demerara Water Conservancy, which is a water storage system that provides regional drainage and flood control, as well as irrigation and drinking water. This will reduce the risk of water levels exceeding safe operating levels, which can potentially lead to breaches of the dam and catastrophic flooding.

3.0

Aquaculture Development - expected to increase Guyana’s aquaculture exports and generate additional skilled and unskilled employment for both the rural and urban labour force.

5.0

Ecotourism Development - aims to improve Guyana’s ecotourism competitiveness both regionally and globally through initiatives tailored to improve service and product quality and market access.

5.0

Biodiversity Research Centre - will see investment in human resources, infrastructure, facilities and equipment to develop a self-sustaining scientific research centre at the University of Guyana (UG) and will also ensure that Guyana is integrated with international advances in biodiversity research, management and protection.

5.0

Institutional Strengthening Phase 2  - will continue to strengthen the technical and administrative capacity of the principal institutions responsible for implementing Guyana’s LCDS.

7.0

Micro and Small Enterprise Development (MSE) Phase 2 - will build on Phase 1 one of this project and provide financial and technical support to micro and small enterprises operating in low carbon sectors.

10.0

Strengthening of the Hydrometeorological Service - expected to improve forecasting abilities and communication that will enable citizens and agencies to prepare and respond to the impacts of weather, water and climate-related hazards in a timely and effective manner.

2.0

Sub-Total

117.0

Total

151.1

 

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