Guyana in preparation of fourth stocktaking report to UNFCCC
Georgetown, GINA, October 1, 2013
The Office of Climate Change (OCC) today hosted a stakeholder consultation for the stocktaking assessment and preparation of the project implementation plan for Guyana’s third national communication under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
The preparation of a national communication is part of the country’s obligation under the Convention. Since Guyana signed on the UNFCCC in 1992, it has prepared and submitted two such documents; the first was done in 2002 and the second in 2012.
Speaking to the stakeholders at the forum, which was held at the Guyana International Conference Centre (GICC), Liliendaal, Presidential Adviser and Head of the OCC, Shyam Nokta expressed the Government’s appreciation to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), for continuing to support Guyana’s efforts at meeting its obligations.
He confirmed that Guyana is up-to-date in terms of its reporting responsibilities under the Convention. Guyana views this communication document not only as an opportunity to report on how it is meeting the Convention’s obligations but also to highlight the various initiatives that it has undertaken to respond to climate change.
“This third national communication process is happening at a time when climate change is being underscored as the most important global issue that we are facing today…climate change is like a runaway train and right now this train is only gaining momentum and even if it reduces speed, we are still heading for catastrophe,” Nokta said.
At the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly held last week in the United States, many world leaders made reference to climate change and there was a call by the UN Secretary General to convene a special summit in 2014 with the aim of stimulating greater action on this global issue.
In Guyana, climate change continues to receive urgent policy attention at the national level. The revolutionary Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS), which is now in the implementation stage, has established a framework for sustainable development. It is recognised as one of the first national scale models of low carbon growth and was promoted as one of the first working models at the RIO+ Summit last year.
Meanwhile, the country’s partnership with Norway continues to progress. Guyana is implementing the second largest interim REDD+ mechanism; successfully completed three consecutive years of good performance, for which the country has been financially compensated. Nokta disclosed that already the audit for the fourth payment has been completed.
“Through the implementation of the LCDS, we are seeing projects moving to implementation that will help us not only to diversify the local economy but to reduce our carbon footprint and improve our ability to adapt to climate change,” he said.
He said that climate change needs to be mainstreamed across the various sectors of the economy; ensuring that climate response features as a very important component of sector planning and growth.
UN Resident Representative, Kadija Musa in her remarks lauded Guyana for making significant efforts to lower carbon footprint by preserving its forests. She noted that future development plans must take into account the importance of this vital service to all humanity.
The national communication documents provide a general status of the key aspects related to climate change in Guyana. These include: national circumstances, national greenhouse gas inventories, programmes containing measures to mitigate climate change, and other relevant information (transfer of technologies, research and systematic observation and education, training and public awareness).