As has become commonplace at such gatherings, the theme this week at the United Nations Climate Summit (“COP28”) has been reducing carbon emissions. The underlying, more sinister theme is to reduce emissions worldwide and is tantamount to modern-day colonialism.
The Financial Times reported there is a “looming land grab” in Africa by corporations in richer countries to purchase land in Liberia, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Tanzania, and Zambia for “carbon credits,” which is a colossal ruse.
“The [methods] of exploitation might be new but the consequences are not so different to the last 200 years of land grabs in Liberia,” an expert on civil society’s role in forest governance in Liberia said.
he following has been paraphrased from the article titled ‘The looming land grab in Africa for carbon credits’ published by the Financial Times. You can read the full article.
Carbon credits are part of the United Arab Emirates’ (“UAE’s”) official strategy to cut its national emissions by 2030. Through a company founded by a member of Dubai’s royal family, Blue Carbon, discussions are taking place to acquire management rights to millions of hectares of land in Africa.
The scale is enormous. According to the Financial Times, the negotiations involve potential deals for about a tenth of Liberia’s land mass, a fifth of Zimbabwe’s, and swaths of Kenya, Zambia and Tanzania.
The founder and chair of the privately owned Dubai-based company is Sheikh Ahmed Dalmook al-Maktoum, a member of Dubai’s royal family. Under an unfinished international accounting framework for carbon markets being designed by the United Nations, Blue Carbon intends to sell the emission reductions linked to forest conservation in African and South American nations as carbon credits. Blue Carbon is among the most active private brokers in this carbon market that is being designed for and by governments.
Climate negotiators at COP28 have been looking to finalise this UN framework to kickstart a new market in carbon credits which would allow countries to shrink their own carbon footprints by buying emission reductions from others.