The Architecture for REDD+ Transactions (ART) has issued the world’s first High-Forest, Low Deforestation (HFLD) credits to Guyana. Following completion of an independent validation and verification process and approval by the ART Board of Directors, ART has issued 33.47 million TREES credits to Guyana for the five-year period from 2016 to 2020. These serialized credits, listed on ART’s public registry, are available to buyers on the global carbon market, including for use by airlines for compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organization’s global emission reduction program, CORSIA, as well as for use toward voluntary corporate climate commitments.
Among the first buyers of Guyana’s credits is the US-owned Hess Corporation which entered a deal with Guyana to purchase 37.5 million REDD+ jurisdictional carbon credits (current and future issuances) worth $750 million. Hess is a major partner with ExxonMobil and CNOOC of China in Guyana’s offshore project, the “Stabroek Block”. It’s one of the world’s largest oil and gas discoveries near Suriname’s border. This shows that while the transaction is good news for the conservation and sustainable use of Guyana’s rainforest, the integrity of the transaction is questionable from the point of view of overall emission reduction.