Liberia Prepares To Access Carbon Market, Issuance of Green Bond

Liberia Finance Minister Tweah Chairs National Climate Change Steering Committee

On November 1, 2020, President George M. Weah told the UN 26th Conference on Climate Change in Glasgow, Scotland the United Kingdom that there is an inherent imbalance in the current architecture of climate financing and that counties like Liberia that maintain and protect the largest remaining tracts of forest reserves, receive the lowest benefits for these ecosystem services.

President Weah said although Liberia bear the brunt of the impact of climate change, the country benefits the least from the existing solutions and financial arrangements currently in place for tackling climate change.

Mr. Sokan, Coordinator, National Climate Change Secretariat

He said in order to address this imbalance, there needs to be a fundamental shift in the way we tackle this mismatch in climate investments today.

Six months following the president’s address, Liberia is now positioning herself to access carbon market and issuance of green bond.

Green bonds raise funds for a new and existing projects which deliver environmental benefits and a more sustainable economy. Green can include renewable energy, sustainable resource use, conservation, clean transportation and adaptation to climate change.

Cross-Section of participants at the meeting held at the Ministry of Agriculture

The disclosure about the country preparation to access carbon market and issuance of green bond was made at the 8th National Climate Change Steering Committee Meeting on Friday, June 23, 2022 at the Ministry of Agriculture in Congo Town by the Ministry of Finance, Samuel D. Tweah.

The meeting was attended by representatives of several government ministries and agencies including Environmental Protection Agency, Forestry Development Authority, Ministries of Agriculture, Mines and Energy, Transports and Gender and Children Social Protection.

The gathering also attracted representatives of development partners including European Union, the United States Embassy, United Nations Development Program (UNDP), local environmental groups, and the private sector.

Speaking at the 8th National Climate Change Steering Committee Meeting, Finance Minister Tweah said that carbon credit and issuance of green bond have to be process only through the National Climate Change Secretariat (NCCS).

The Carbon Consultative Group is a subset of the NCCS that comprises of 26 members including all related development partners to serve as think tank on technical discussions.

Minister Tweah disclosed that Liberia will not allow itself to be bulk-down into models and structures that haven’t work and explained that the country is going to employ new approaches and innovations going forward.

“This is the clear message the president sent at COP 26th calling for Carbon Market in West Africa,” he said.

“Innovation, new approaches and new paradigm are going to be explore across government and between the government and its partners,” Minister Tweah who presided over the meeting added.

He said: For example, how are we going to protect forest-there are two sources of challenge to the forest-government revenue through commercial logging is a risk to our forest ad private livelihood support is a risk to our forest. In the last 40-50 years under the current model we have not been able to address de-forestation using this exact model. We need to find a new approach to safe our forest and meet our target.

Minister Tweah also noted that there is going to be extensive extraordinary coordination within the government and between the government and its development partners on these principles

For his part, the National Coordinator of NCCS, Jeremiah G. Sokan also underscored the need for Liberia to fine innovative ways to get money and said it’s not going to be a walk in the park.

“It needs to be carefully done with a collective effort from line government ministries and agencies. We need to work together as brothers and sisters if we must pull it out,” Mr. Sokan said in a presentation title “Global Landscape of Climate”.

He provided the total numbers of climate finance provided and mobilized by developed countries.

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