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Papua New Guinea - Australian TV reports on Carbon Chaos
Papua New Guinea has been at the centre of the global push for tropical forests to be included in a Copenhagen climate change deal. PNG has also been the centre of ongoing REDD-related scandals. In August, PNG's Special Envoy for Climate Change, Kevin Conrad, informed the UN-REDD meeting in Switzerland that the government was investigating the corruption linked to the issuance of carbon rights. Yet, there are reports of villagers are being threatened at gunpoint to hand over their carbon rights to ‘carbon cowboys”. More recently the government has shut down the Office of Climate Change & Environmental Sustainability (OCCES), and there are criminal investigations underway regarding the governments issuance of carbon certificates, despite the lack of a legal framework or adequate consultation with local people – who own the forests of Papua New Guinea.
A 4-part documentary on this evolving issue was broadcast last week on the Australian channel SBS. It documents the links between opportunistic capital, weak governance, corruption and the exploitation of indigenous people - for REDD projects. It also debunks the myth that forest protection and carbon sequestration can be achieved by handing forests over to be 'managed' by industrial loggers.
Posted By Lopaka Purdy at 5:40pm on December 17, 2009
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