President Nana Addo Dankwa Addo-Addo has launched the Ghana Forest Cocoa Forest REDD+ Programme (GCFRP), aimed at making the cocoa sector climate resilient.
The initiative, a collaboration between the Forestry Commission and the Ghana COCOBOD, seeks to curb carbon emissions resulting from cocoa expansion into forests through the promotion of appropriate climate-smart cocoa production approaches.
The launch was on the theme: “Achieving 10 Million Tonnes Emission Reduction in Six Years”.
Speaking at the programme in Accra, President Akufo-Addo indicated that the GCFRP had the capacity to propel the country’s economy, restore forest cover, significantly reduce greenhouse gases, boost cocoa production, and also increase the tourism potential of Ghana.
As co-chair of the UN eminent group of advocates of the Sustainable Development Goals, he said the implementation of GCFRP was crucial in order that Ghana reduced its carbon footprints.
“The Ghana Cocoa Forest REDD+ Programme (GCFRP) has the capacity to further our economy, restore our forest cover, reduce meaningfully our greenhouse gases, boost cocoa production, and also increase the tourism potential of our country”
“As co-chair of the UN eminent group of advocates of the SDGs, u am aware that the implementation of GCFRP is crucial. I, therefore, call on all stakeholders to rise to the occasion. This is the time to exhibit real ambition through action. The GCFRP is a performance-based programmme and we need results in the form of verifiable emission reductions”.
The President thus charged the Forestry Commission and the Ghana COCOBOD to ensure that they joined forces through the initiative to make the country’s cocoa sector climate resilient.
With the potential to earn Ghana some $50million, The Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie in his address, indicated that Ghana is the third country globally to subscribe to the carbon funds portfolio.
“Per the terms and conditions of this agreement, Ghana shall be advanced an amount of 1.3 million US dollars to Kickstart some of the activities in the programme document” the Forestry Commission Chief Executive Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie said.
The programme is expected to also curb illegal timber harvesting and mining, while incorporating shade trees in cocoa systems and to build climate – resilience for the cocoa sector in order to secure rural livelihoods and sustain national development.