Guyana will remain carbon sink even at maximized oil production – GS Jagdeo

General Secretary of the Peoples Progressive Party (PPP), Dr Bharrat Jagdeo has assured that increased oil and gas production in Guyana will not make the country a carbon bomb.

He reiterated that Guyana will remain a carbon sink in response to Journalist Stephen Sackur in his feature of Guyana on HARDtalk, a current affairs interview programme on the BBC.

General Secretary of the People’s Progressive Party Civic, Dr Bharrat Jagdeo at his weekly media conference on Thursday

Sackur had reported that Guyana will emit approximately two billion tons of carbon into the atmosphere in the next decade, thereby moving the country to a carbon bomb status.

However, Dr Jagdeo dismissed this claim as a miscalculation and confirmed that the figure was totally wrong.

In the environmental permit for the licensing of the FPSOs, a figure was submitted indicating that the maximum emission per FPSO would be 2 million tons of CO2 equivalent per annum.

However, as of now, the figures are much lower than that. Even if the government or critics considers those figures (2 million per annum), and has six FPSOs operating, between 1.2 to 1.5 million barrels per day would be produced, as explained by Dr Jagdeo.

“That’s 12 million tons of CO2 emission per year. Now our forest sequesters over 150 million tons of carbon from the atmosphere. If we’re emitting 12 million tons per annum from six FPSO…I am talking about peak; that’s only 7 per cent of the carbon that our forest sequester from the atmosphere. So, we cannot become a carbon bomb; we will remain a carbon sink even at maximum production of 1.5 barrels per year. We’ll remain a huge carbon sink globally,” he further expounded.

According to the general secretary, that is only for scope one of emissions, which refers to those direct emissions that are owned by a company, in Guyana’s case – ExxonMobil. 

In terms of scope 3 emissions, whereby a country is held accountable for the refinery of oil – Guyana will still remain a huge carbon sink.

“Under the UN International Convention, only when oil comes onshore do we have to account for these emissions…the oil does not come here…so we only have to account for 12 million tons…we emit. Even if we utilise that (scope 3 emissions)…which is still only 25 per cent from annual sequestration by our forest. So, even if we account for all, even the end use of carbon…we will never be a carbon bomb,” he underscored.

Guyana has embarked on a massive transformation guided by the Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS 2030) first crafted under the Former President Jagdeo, and updated by the current administration.

The LCDS2030 will create a new-low-carbon economy in Guyana by establishing incentives which value the world’s ecosystem services, and promoting these as an essential component of a new model of global development with sustainability at its core.

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