Ghana’s carbon emission reduction activities received a boost last Friday as international petroleum company Tullow Oil entered an agreement with the Forestry Commission to support the country to achieve its carbon offset targets.
The two institutions signed a Letter of Intent to that effect to deepen the West African country’s nature-based carbon offset opportunity beyond the initial project feasibility study.
Julia Ross, Tullow’s director for People and Sustainability, said during the ceremony that the support would be part of the company’s capital expenditure budget for Ghana in 2023 and would support the country’s 2030 zero emissions agenda.
“We are taking this step because it is a key element of our net-zero strategy, since we have set an ambition to be net-zero in our scope one and two emissions by 2030,” Ross said.
She said the company was, therefore, investing in projects in “our host countries to ensure we work with governments in whose countries we have our operations to achieve these targets.”
Ross added that the carbon offset programmes in Ghana would deliver up to one million tons of carbon credit per annum over many years and be used to offset the carbon emissions from Ghana’s Jubilee and TEN oil fields operated by Tullow.
Ghana is divided into five ecological zones, Savannah, transitional, cocoa landscape, coastal mangrove, and Togo Plateau, under the “Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation” (REDD+) initiative under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
“This partnership with Tullow for activities in the transitional zone signals yet another significant REDD+ milestone for Ghana as we begin to develop interventions for the third ecological landscape programme according to the 20-year REDD+ launched in 2016,” said John Allotey, Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission.
He said, “The Commission is particularly enthusiastic about this engagement with Tullow as it demonstrates proof of the concept of a sustainable transition journey towards net-zero in the voluntary carbon market space, which also fosters community development and empowers livelihoods.”
Allotey added that the project in the transitional zone (the meeting place of the forest and savannah grasslands) would reverse deforestation and forest degradation to preserve the natural vegetation left and improve livelihoods.
Tullow’s investment became the third in Ghana’s zero emissions activities after the 4.8 million dollars from the World Bank Group into the cocoa landscape segment and the Green Climate Fund’s approval for the Shea Landscape Emission Reduction covering the Savannah zone.
Tullow also became the first private sector organization to provide investment for Ghana’s emission reduction activities.
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