2023年9月17日日曜日

SARAWAK FOREST DEPARTMENT : CARBON TRADING ACTIVITIES TO BENEFIT LOCAL COMMUNITIES

SARAWAK FOREST DEPARTMENT : CARBON TRADING ACTIVITIES TO BENEFIT LOCAL COMMUNITIES

@Jackie San


BINTULU (July 13, 2023): The Sarawak government is committed to protecting and conserving its forests, which are an important part of the state’s natural heritage and economy.


Forest Department Sarawak deputy director Semilan Ripot said one of the ways the government is doing this is through forest carbon activities.


“Forest carbon activities are projects that aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by conserving forests or restoring degraded forests,” he said at the ‘Introduction of Forest Carbon Activities in Sarawak’ seminar here yesterday.


He said these projects can generate carbon credits, which are tradable units that represent the removal of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.


“The Sarawak government is committed to developing a sustainable forest sector that benefits both the environment and the people of Sarawak.


“Forest carbon activities are an important part of this vision, and the government is working to ensure that these projects are implemented in a way that is environmentally sound and beneficial to local communities,” he said.


He explained the Sarawak government has been working to develop a framework for forest carbon activities, and passed the Forests (Forest Carbon Activity) Rules 2022, which took effect on Jan 1, 2023.


He pointed out that these rules provide a clear regulatory framework for forest carbon projects in Sarawak and they are expected to help attract investment in these projects.


The seminar aimed to provide a platform for knowledge sharing and discussion among participants from different sectors, including government agencies, non-governmental organisations, the private sector, and individuals.


Meanwhile, Forest Department Sarawak Planning and Management Unit assistant director Ricky Jonathan Alex said with its vast forested landscapes and diverse ecosystems, Sarawak has a crucial role to play in the global fight against climate change.


“The introduction of Forests (Forest Carbon Activity) Rules 2022 holds immense potential for mitigating greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and promoting sustainable development,” he said during the seminar’s closing ceremony.


He added the seminar has allowed the participants to delve deeper into the complex interplay between forests, carbon sequestration, and sustainable development.


“We have learned that forests are not only repositories of carbon but also vital contributors to local economies, biodiversity conservation, and the well-being of communities.


“By implementing forest carbon activities, we can not only reduce carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere but also generate economic opportunities, enhance ecosystem services, and improve the resilience of our ecosystems,” he said.


Ricky said the impacts of climate change are becoming increasingly apparent, with rising temperatures, extreme weather events, and loss of biodiversity.


“It is essential that we act swiftly and decisively to address these challenges, and the introduction of forest carbon activities is a powerful tool in our arsenal,” he said.


However, he said forest carbon initiatives must give priority to the principles of sustainability, inclusivity, and social justice.


“We must ensure that the rights and interests of local communities and indigenous peoples are respected and upheld throughout the process.


“Their knowledge, traditions, and stewardship of the land are invaluable resources that can guide us towards a more equitable and sustainable future,” he said.

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@Jackie San

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