|Guyana criticizes carbon credit scheme of Kyoto Protocol|
|Published on Friday, July 13, 2007||Email To Friend Print Version|
|GEORGETOWN, Guyana (AFP): Guyana’s President Bharrat Jagdeo on Thursday criticised the Kyoto Protocol on climate change for failing to allow countries like his nation with pristine unharvested forests to earn carbon credits.
"The Kyoto Protocol is limited in that sense, and it’s short-sighted in that it encourages bad behaviour basically among countries; if you cut down trees and you plant them back you get money, if you preserve them, you don’t get anything," Jagdeo told a forum on agro-energy.
The Guyanese leader noted that Guyana would reap "miniscule" assistance under the Clean Development Mechanism of the Kyoto Protocol when the South American country begins large-scale production of ethanol and other types of agro-based energy.
He said Guyana has decided to get into the production of bio-fuels such as ethanol and biodiesel. But "assistance is miniscule through the Clean Development Mechanism as compared to the carbon credits we could get from standing forests," said Jagdeo, a Russian-trained economist.
Carbon credits are the center of a system of credits that allows a company or country that reduces its carbon-dioxide emissions below a target level to sell the extra reduction as a credit to a company or country that has not met the target level.
Under the Clean Development Mechanism of the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, developed countries can take up a greenhouse gas reduction project in a developing country where the cost of greenhouse gas reduction projects is usually much lower.
Guyana has already set aside 200,000 acres of land in the eastern part of the country for investors to plant special varieties of sugar cane to make ethanol.
In northwestern Guyana near Venezuela, a company is planting oil palm to make biodiesel for use in that area to reduce fuel costs and at the same time clamp down on illegal fuel smuggling from the neighbouring nation.