Minister Bharrat Emphasises link between sustainable Agriculture and Climate Change

Minister of Natural Resources, Vickram Bharrat MP represented Guyana at an event hosted by the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture in Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt – as part of the 27th conference of parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), COP27.  

Minister of Natural Resources, Hon. Vickram Bharrat and Former Minister of the Environment and International Development of Norway, Hon. Erik Solheim

The event focussed on opportunities for new agricultural practices to address food security across the Americas. Minister Bharrat emphasised that approaches to food security needed to be compatible with action to adapt to climate change, as well as efforts to maintain forests and other ecosystem services.

The Minister spoke of how Guyana leads CARICOM’s Food and Nutrition Security efforts, saying “Our mission of focused on ensuring the protection of our citizens’ livelihoods and our goal is to action ’25 by 25’ meaning to cut food imports by 25% by 2025, amounting to savings of over US$5 billion.” He also cautioned that it is impossible to separate these issues from action on climate change, which is the main focus of COP27.

Minister Bharrat was joined at the event by former Norwegian Minister of Environment, Mr Erik Solheim – who had signed the ground-breaking Guyana-Norway Agreement in 2009. At the time the Guyana-Norway Agreement was the second largest of its kind in the world and supported the 2008 Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS). For the period 2009 to 2015, Norway paid Guyana in excess of US$211 million in recognition of Guyana’s forest management – this money is being invested in renewable energy, adaptation to climate change, Amerindian land titling, Information and Communications Technology access in the hinterland, and development projects across the country.

At the event in Egypt, Minister Bharrat highlighted progress since the original LCDS was launched – culminating in this year’s launch of the LCDS 2030, which was produced after a seven-month national consultation. Afterwards, the Minister discussed the LCDS 2030 with Mr Solheim and updated him on plans to evolve the original Guyana-Norway Agreement’s system of payments for forest climate services to integration with the voluntary carbon markets.

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