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Government and Tullow Oil Plc Sign Emissions Reductions Purchase Agreement

In January, Ghana started receiving payments from the World Bank for actions taken to reduce deforestation. The agreement with Tullow is expected to bolster those efforts.

Ghana’s Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, and the Forestry Commission, on Thursday, signed what they called a “historic” Emissions Reductions Purchase Agreement (ERPA) with British Oil and Gas giant, Tullow Plc.

“The agreement, outdoored at a ceremony in Accra on Thursday, 23rd May, 2024 represents a major step forward in Ghana’s commitment to sustainable development and environmental stewardship,” the Ministry said in a statement, adding that the agreement would also generate revenue for local communities and support Ghana’s climate change mitigation efforts, although details remain sketchy at the moment.

The project according to stakeholders involves forest conservation activities, that aim at preserving about two million hectares of forest land, particularly across 14 administrative districts in the Bono and Bono East Regions – areas highly impacted by deforestation.

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The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor said the project with Tullow would eventually set a new benchmark for carbon pricing in the region.

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In January, Ghana started receiving payments from a World Bank trust fund for reducing carbon emissions  – becoming the second country in Africa after Mozambique to receive a payout for efforts at reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, commonly known as REDD+.

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The amount paid to Ghana was $4,862,280 for reducing 972,456 tons of carbon emissions for the first monitoring period under the program (June to December 2019).

World Bank Country Director for Ghana, Pierre Laporte, said the country will earn about $50 million more if more carbon emissions are reduced by 2024.

“This payment is the first of four under the country’s Emission Reductions Payment Agreement (ERPA) with the World Bank to demonstrate potential for leveraging results based payments for carbon credits. Subject to showing results from actions taken to reduce deforestation, Ghana is eligible to receive up to $50 million for 10 million tons of CO2 emissions reduced by the end of 2024,” Mr. Laporte said in a statement when the first payments were made.

Previous projects, like the one signed with Tullow now, focused on cocoa and shea butter areas, known as the Ghana Cocoa Forest REDD+ Program and the Ghana Shea Landscape Emission Reductions Project.

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