The Bahamas government has announced its plans to start selling what is known as blue carbon credits as early as by the end of this year.
The island nation has decided to take advantage of its natural carbon sinks and monetize from ocean-based or blue carbon credits.
According to Prime Minister Philip Davis, who made the announcement last Thursday, so far, local officials have estimated a minimum of $300 million worth of assets that may soon be made available on the international carbon market.
Davis shared his view of the rich seagrass meadows and mangroves surrounding the Bahamas as ‘garbage collectors’ for the global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that have so far been providing the world their service for free.
Now, he said during the Caribbean Renewable Energy Forum (CREF) in Miami, it was time the nation started charging for that service.
Growing demand for blue carbon credits
Indeed, carbon credits have never been in higher demand than they are now, as businesses focus muh of their efforts on meeting climate goals and offsetting their emissions.
Some projections say the carbon offsets market is set to reach between $245 and $546 billion by 2050.
And while up until now most of the world’s focus has been predominantly on green carbon credits (i.e., such tied to natural sequestration by forests and grasslands), the potential of ocean-based blue cabron is yet to be tapped.
In fact, if the Bahamas does indeed start selling blue carbon credits this year, as it plans, that will make it one of the world’s first countries to do so.
But it would not be the only one, as Japan is currently also engaged in studying the potential of blue carbon.
Furthermore, a regional meeting is scheduled to be held in the coming weeks with the idea to have other nations in the Caribbean join the initiative.
The region is one of the most vulnerable to the climate crisis, with most of its existing debt being accumulated as a result of natural disasters rooted in climate change.
Thus, all profit gained from the sale of carbon credits would be invested in renewables and projects that would help make the Bahamas more resilient to the climate crisis.