New Record: Gabon awarded $17 million for protecting and maintaining its rainforest

Gabon has received $17 million (KSh 17 billion) in compensation for successfully reducing greenhouse gas emissions through reduced deforestation and forest degradation.

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The announcement was made on Tuesday, June 22, in statement issued by the environment ministry, which stated that the payment was made after independent experts verified Gabon’s results.

According to Gabon’s environment ministry, the first cash payment will be used to invest in local forestry projects. “The goal is to improve the income, livelihoods, and well-being of Gabonese communities,” it stated.
It revealed that the country’s carbon emissions in 2016-17 were lower than annual figures for 2006-2015.
The funds were distributed by the Central African Forest Initiative (CAFI), United Nations-backed organization founded in 2015 with funding from international donors.
The program provides financial incentives to Central African governments to pursue economic progress while preserving the region’s vast natural resources.
Gabon, where forests cover 90% of the territory, is home to 18% of the Congo Basin forest, which is known as the world’s second lung after the Amazon Forests.

Gabon will receive a total of $150 million if it meets its carbon-cutting targets under a 10-year agreement signed in 2019 with CAFI.

The small tropical country has pledged to cut carbon emissions in half by 2025, compared to 2005 levels. Gabon has been a Central African pioneer in preserving its rainforests, establishing 13 national parks that cover more than 11% of the country since 2000.

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