Singapore-based wetlands carbon sequestration developer Bioeconomy has announced a 25-year Jurisdictional Nested REDD+ (JNR) agreement with Equateur Province in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) for the protection of the region’s peatlands.
The exclusive agreement was signed in the regional capital Mbandaka between the Province of Equateur, Bioeconomy as lead technical partner, WATICO and Société Environnementale de l’Équateur.
The deal covers monitoring and protection of the region’s forest, peatlands, and biodiversity, development of land use plans, and promotion of sustainable agriculture and forest management practices.
In addition, carbon credits will be generated through a mechanism for tracking and verifying emissions reductions, which is expected to bring significant benefits to the local community.
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“With carbon finance, we can make a positive impact on the lives of the communities in Equateur and the region’s rich biodiversity supports opportunities in genomic mapping for new discoveries in medicine and scientific research with benefits flowing to the people of Equateur. Putting nature at the heart of the value equation is the best way to create a virtuous circular economy, that is the Bioeconomy model,” Bioeconomy’s CEO, Dorjee Sun, said in a statement.
Peatlands in the DRC, which are severely damaged by oil and gas exploitation as well as appropriation by people for agricultural purposes, are considered a “carbon bomb” for two reasons – they are no longer able to remove millions of tons of carbon from the atmosphere annually, and they themselves become a source of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
The DRC is one of the world’s so-called megadiverse countries, and Equateur Province, with a total area of 103,902 km2, is home to three-quarters of the country’s peatlands.
Read more: New Peatlands Protocol Aims To Restore 50 Million Hectares