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Low Carbon Development Strategy Update - Transforming Guyana's Economy While Combating Climate Change.

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The Guyana's Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS), after over a year of review and consultation, coupled with input from climate change negotiations at the United Nations. The LCDS aims to achieve two goals: 1) transform Guyana's economy to deliver greater economic and social development for the people by following a low carbon development path; and 2) provide a model for the world of how climate change can be addressed through low carbon development in developing countries, if the international community takes the necessary collective actions, especially relating to REDD+. This update to the LCDS provides a summary of progress against both of these goals, as of March 2013 as well as an outline on the focus of LCDS implementation for the period 2013 to 2015.
The LCDS states that an increase in the EVN of REDD+ could enable Guyana to continue to generate economic growth at, or in excess of, projected Latin American growth rates over a decade, while simultaneously reducing energy-related greenhouse gas emissions. This could be achieved by: Investing in strategic low carbon economic infrastructure, including a hydro-electricity plant at Amaila Falls; improved access to arable, non-forested land; and improved fibre optic bandwidth to facilitate the development of low carbon business activities. Nurturing investment in high-potential low carbon sectors, such as fruits and vegetables, aquaculture, business process outsourcing and ecotourism. Reforming existing forest-dependent sectors, including forestry and mining, where necessary, so that these sectors operate at the standards needed to sustainably maintain the forest. Expanding access to services, and creating new economic opportunities, for Amerindian communities through improved social services (including health and education), low carbon energy sources, clean water and employment which does not threaten the forest. Improving services to the broader Guyana citizenry, including improving and expanding job prospects, promoting private sector entrepreneurship, and improving social services with a particular focus on health and education. Protecting Guyana s people and productive land from changing weather patterns. Investments in priority climate adaptation infrastructure can reduce the 10 percent of current GDP which is estimated to be lost each year as a result of flooding.
The LCDS emphasizes how Guyana also needs to continue to invest in further improvements in its social sectors for example, to increase access to quality healthcare and education; to help businesses and citizens improve their access to safe and affordable water and electricity; to enhance the security of all Guyana s citizens; to protect vulnerable sectors of society; to continue to provide targeted support for land tenure and development in Amerindian villages; and to alleviate poverty. Guyana is the first country in the world to propose a national scale 'Opt In' process for whether and how indigenous peoples may choose to opt in to a REDD+ mechanism in the coming years.
The details of the Climate Resilience, Adaptation and Water Management will be determined through a Climate Resilience Strategy that will be completed by the first half of 2014, and will likely include the following measures: Upgrading infrastructure and assets to protect against flooding through urgent, near-term measures. This will include maintaining and upgrading Guyana s drainage and irrigation system, empoldering as well as dredging and de-silting major rivers, expansion of the use of mangroves as natural sea defenses, and significant upgrades to the East Demerara Water Conservancy (EDWC) to protect Georgetown, the East Bank and most of the East Coast. Hinterland Adaptation: This will include the development, reproduction and distribution of plant varieties and crop management techniques that are suitable for Hinterland communities, thereby ensuring the sustainability and further development of their livelihoods. In addition, all-weather roads and bridges and new drainage and irrigation systems will be constructed, with a focus on particularly vulnerable areas. Adaptation Readiness Programme: This could include significantly revamping Guyana's early warning system and improving the timely and accurate collection and dissemination of data and information on weather-related events and their impacts on the ground.
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Office of the President, Republic of Guyana.
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Legislation Amendment