Ghana partners Swedish, Swiss orgs to reduce emissions

Ghana yesterday signed two Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with the Swedish Energy Agency (SEA) and Mercuria Energy Trading (MET) of Switzerland respectively to reduce emissions in the country.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) represented by its Executive Director, Dr Henry Kokofu, signed the pact with the Director-General of the SEA, Robert Andrén, and Managing Director-Africa of MET, LaoyeAbiola.

The separate signing ceremonies were held on the sidelines of the ongoing 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) at Glasgow, Scotland where multitudes have gathered to discuss climate change.

The EPA/SEA partnership is expected to lead to the implementation of Article 6 of the Paris Agreement (an international treaty on climate change adopted in 2015,) which encourages parties to voluntarily cooperate to realise their mitigation and adaptation actions in the climate change fight.

Ghana’s Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, DrKwakuAfriyie, Per Bolund, the Swedish Minister for Environment and Climate, and Deputy Prime Minister who witnessed the ceremony stated their country’s commitment to the MoU and the climate change efforts.

 “It is our hope that the partnership established through this MoU will showcase how Article 6 cooperation can promote sustainable development and raise ambition whilst ensuring environmental integrity, transparency, and robust accounting”, said Mr Bolund.

“This agreement should be seen as a sign of leadership and it is our intention to raise the bar for climate cooperation. It is a solid foundation for our continued cooperation and together we will increase climate ambition and accelerate our transition to sustainable societies,” said Mr Andrén.

The MoU with MET, one of the world’s largest integrated independent energy and commodities companies is also hinged on the operationalising of Article 6 on the Carbon Market of the Paris Agreement in Ghana.

 It is meant to facilitate the ambitions set out in the Cooperation Agreement between the Swiss Confederation Ghana with the hope to build capabilities of local businesses to invest and implement greenhouse gas emissions reduction projects in various sectors.

The sectors are alternative waste management; oil and gas; transportation; sustainable household energy (cookstove and household devices); forestry (redd+ as both project-based and jurisdictional); marine and coastal waters conservation and other sectors that the parties may further identify as appropriate.

The programmes are expected to contribute to achieving Ghana’s Nationally Determined Contribution to the Paris Agreement, create employment and facilitate the transfer of climate-friendly technologies.

The MoU is also to pave the way for the EPA and Mercuria Trading to start engagement with key stakeholders in the carbon market value chain.

“Mercuriarecognises the investment opportunities for promoting the sustainable transition to a low carbon future through green business, creation of green jobs, technology transfer, and sustainable development benefits in the emerging carbon markets,

 “Mercuria will work with Ghana to increase local capabilities in emissions reduction project implementation,” said the Global Head of Environmental Products Trading of MET, EnricArderiu.

On his part, DrKokofu assured the two organisations of the country’s desire to work with them towards a good cause.

BY JONATHAN DONKOR

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