The Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, has assured the global community that Ghana remains committed to providing leadership for nature-based climate action.
Mr Jinapor, who is a Co-Chair of the Forests and Climate Leaders Partnership (FCLP), stressed that the debilitating impact of the climate crisis was cross-cutting and required collective action from all countries to overcome.
“And this is why Ghana is ready to partner with other nations, both north and south, to promote nature-based climate action,” he said.
Mr Jinapor stated this at the launch of the FCLP working group on Strengthening Supply and Demand of High-integrity Forest Carbon Credits at the maiden Africa Climate Summit (ACS) in Nairobi, Kenya yesterday.
The one-week event dubbed, Africa Climate Week (ACW), is one of four regional climate summits being held ahead of the 28th Conference of Parties (COP28) of the United Nations Framework on Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
It is a build-up to the continent’s participation in COP 28 in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in December, this year.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and 18 other African heads of state and leaders have converged on the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, for the ACS.
Aside from the African leaders, the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, and the President of the European Union Commission, Ursla Von der Leyen, are participating in the one-week summit.
The launch of the working group was attended by the United States Presidential Envoy on Climate and Co-Chair of the FCLP, John Kerry.
Mr Jinapor described the ACS as timely because it was the rallying point for the continent’s leaders to take urgent action and work together with other stakeholders to address the climate crisis.
He observed that forests, which contributed a third of global climate solutions, were crucial to attaining the 1.5 degrees Celsius target.
“The role of preserving, restoring and sustainably managing our forests has become paramount in our global mission to mitigate the far-reaching impacts of climate change,” he said.
The Lands and Natural Resources Minister stressed that the FCLP was committed to implementing initiatives that would help to halt forest loss and land degradation by 2030, in accordance with the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forests and Land Use.
Mr Jinapor added that as part of measures to facilitate the work of the FCLP, a working group, jointly led by Ghana, Gabon, Guyana and the United Kingdom, had been constituted to address High-integrity Forest Carbon Credit Supply and Demand issues.
He said the group would unveil a roadmap and strategy for fortifying and expanding forest carbon credits by COP28 and COP30.
The minister explained that the strategy would include mid-term actions to bolster high-integrity forest carbon finance and the announcement of forest carbon results-based finance transactions.
“Ghana will continue to play a lead role in this group and the broader FCLP, to accelerate nature-based climate action,” Mr Jinapor stated.
With COP 28 considered as global stocktaking on climate actions, the meeting of the African leaders, policymakers and civil society organisations (CSOs) in Nairobi, Kenya, will discuss region-focused contributions to addressing the climate crisis on four thematic areas.
These are energy systems and industry; cities, urban and rural settlements, infrastructure and transport; Land, ocean, food and water; and societies, health, livelihoods, and economies.
Apart from President Akufo-Addo, the other African leaders at the summit are the Presidents of Rwanda, Paul Kagame; Senegal, Macky Sall; Sierra Leone, Julius Maada Bio; South Sudan, Salva Kiir Mayardit; Tanzania, Samia Suluhu Hassan; Mozambique, Filipe Jacinto Nyusi; and Libya, Younis A. Menfi.
The rest are the Presidents of Eritrea, Isaias Afwerki; Ethiopia, Sahle-Work Zewde; Djibouti, Omar Guellah; Congo, Denis Sassou Nguesso; Comoros, Azali Assoumani; Central African Republic, Faustin Archange Touadera; and Burundi, Evariste Ndayishimiye.
Also present at the summit are the Prime Ministers of Egypt, Mostafa Madbouly and the Democratic Republic of Congo, Sama Lukonde.
The event, which started yesterday, provides a platform for policymakers, practitioners, businesses and civil society to explore sustainable climate solutions.
It would also be a medium through which the stakeholders would examine how to overcome barriers to clean energy and the opportunities that exist in different regions.