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DENR Secretary: PH has great potential in carbon credits market

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The Philippines has the potential to become a real carbon sink and could seize the opportunity available in the carbon credits market because of its large forestlands that could be planted with trees, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Maria Antonia Yulo-Loyzaga said on Tuesday.

In a press briefing in Malacañang, Yulo-Loyzaga said the Philippines has an actual seven million hectares of forest cover and 15 million hectares overall coverage, because of which the country has gained strong standing in the carbon market.

“Ang Pilipinas po has a great possibility combining the land-based—land-based lang ho iyong 15 (million hectares), mayroon pa tayong mangrove forest, mayroon pa po tayong seagrass – we have the great potential of being a real sink, ang tinatawag pong sink,” Yulo-Loyzaga said.

“Hindi po tayo net emitter but eventually, we can actually have the capacity to absorb other areas’ emissions.”

Given this scenario, the DENR secretary encouraged local government units (LGUs) and the private sector to invest in the carbon credits market with the goal of sequestering carbon emission from the atmosphere.

The carbon markets are trading systems in which carbon credits are sold and bought, with companies or individuals using carbon markets to compensate for their greenhouse gas emissions by purchasing carbon credits from entities that remove or reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

A 2021 report said greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions were still rising across all major industries globally, although at a slower pace.

In the same report, scientists also warned global warming of 2°C will be exceeded during the 21st century unless there are deep reductions in current GHG emissions.

On Tuesday, the DENR presented the national environment and natural resources geospatial mapping tool they created, upon the directive of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., for identifying areas for reforestation, watershed management as well as for the crafting mining policies.

Yulo-Loyzaga said the geospatial database will use satellite imagery and other tools to process what are the available natural resources to account for, value, and manage properly. | PND

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