GEORGETOWN, Guyana – The Government of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana has received the first tranche of a US$6.34 million grant from the Kingdom of Norway as it enters into the second phase of the forest monitoring mechanism known as Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV). This second phase of the MRV programme will no longer be seen as a means of satisfying a conditionality for funding, but also, as a tool for measuring Guyana’s forest cover to assist in decision-making for a range of activities. The funds will be dispersed in tranches through Conservation International in a muti-year arrangement.
The announcement was made at a meeting on Monday August 7, 2017 held at the Ministry of Natural Resources’ Boardroom in the presence of Minister of Natural Resources Hon. Raphael G.C. Trotman M.P., Chairman of the Guyana Foresty Commission Board, Ms. Jocelyn Dow, Ms. Pradeepa Bhlonauth, Head of Planning – GFC, and Executive Director of Conservation International – Guyana Dr. David Singh among other officials. Fittingly, it was in Norway during the attendance of Guyana’s delegation at the Oslo-Redd Conference in 2016 June that the persons gathered yesterday began the process of accessing the funds and this was additional reason for celebration.
With funding from the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD), the project entitled, ‘Transforming forest management in Guyana through an effective and sustained monitoring reporting and verification system’, will support the sustaining of a world-class MRV system, as a key component of Guyana’s national REDD+ programme. This programme has received international recognition for its successes.
The system will provide the basis for verifiably measuring changes in Guyana’s forest cover and resultant carbon emissions from Guyana’s forests. Critically, the MRVS will also inform improved policies and practices for forest management, including for the operation of the logging and mining industries, to proactively address their impacts on forests. The phase two implementation period is 2017 to 2021.
The project is aimed also at securing Guyana’s green development path by improving management of its forests, a significant part of its natural patrimony.
With MRV data going back a number of years, Guyana now has a good sense of the state of its forest cover which has been changing over time and what the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation are. The MRV will help Guyana with its integrated natural resource management by assisting in decision-making before the issues present themselves on the ground. It can reduce not only cost but also angst and anguish surrounding land use by identifying conflicts between mining and forestry, for example.
Guyana started its work on the National MRV system in 2009, following the Memorandum of Understanding signed between Guyana and the Kingdom of Norway. The partnership with Conservation International is now in its sixth year.
The MRV has practical applications which may augment the work of the Guyana Forestry Commission, the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission, the Guyana Lands and Surveys Commission, the Guyana Energy Agency, and the Ministry of Communities among other agencies.
Minister Trotman expressed satisfaction and pride that the project has come to this stage. He also expressed his appreciation to the Guyana Forestry Commission and Conservation International for guiding the process and the Government of Norway for making the funding available for the project through NORAD.
“We have every confidence that the money is in the right place and in the right hands,” in referring to the Conservation International and GFC arrangement, expressed expressed confidence that the funds will be well spent in execution of the project.