Transformation ongoing as $2.6B carbon credit payments already dispersed to 238 Indigenous villages 


A total of 238 of 242 indigenous villages have already benefited from a US$22 million (about GY$4.7 billion) sum paid by the Hess Corporation for carbon credits from Guyana’s forests.

Village leaders told the ongoing National Toshaos Conference that apart from the direct support they received from the government, these funds are making huge impacts on the transformation of their villages.

This is according to Vice President, Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo who has been engaging Toshaos at the conference over the last four days.

A section of the gathering at the National Toshaos Conference

Jagdeo clarified that some $2.6 billion of the $4.7 billion sum was drawn down already and by the end of this year, most of it will be expended.

“If you listen to the Toshaos, you will hear how transformative these funds have been in communities,” Jagdeo told reporters during a press conference at the Office of the President on Thursday.

He intends to ask for the presentation of the Toshaos to be made public so people can hear directly their sentiments on the funds.

Next year, these communities will get more such funds to continue the ongoing transformative work.  The remaining four communities are to complete the process outlined by the government before the monies set aside for them can be released.

Requirements to use the funds include the submission of a plan for utilisation, along with the minutes of the meeting where the plan was discussed, submission of a sign-in sheet to show who attended the meeting and demonstrate that 2/3 of the village supported the plan.

Once this is in place, the villages will be invited to sign an opt-in letter.

Each community is getting funds ranging between GY$10 million and GY$35 million from the first set of carbon payments from Hess Corporation. Jagdeo is concerned about discouragements being spread by the Amerindian People’s Association (APA).

Last December, Guyana inked its first and only carbon credit deal with Hess Corporation; Hess is paying for about 30% of Guyana’s carbon credits. The deal was brokered after the country got special carbon credits for its vast, intact forests issued to it last December.

By the end of 2030, Guyana should amass at least US$750 million from the deal inked with Hess and 15% of the sum, or US$112 million overall, will be disbursed directly to Indigenous communities. The 15% disbursement is stipulated by Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS).

Outside of the Hess deal, Guyana still has 70% of its carbon credits available for marketing. And if the prices for the credits are extrapolated, Jagdeo says Guyana could get about US$2.5 billion.

Indigenous communities are getting 15% of the payments.

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