Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has launched the Ghana Shea Landscape Emission Reductions Project (GSLERP) on the theme, “Climate Resilence for People, Industry and Forests” at an event held at the Tamale Jubilee Park on Friday, 11th February, 2022.
The project which was developed by the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources through the Forestry Commission, the United Nation Development Programme (UNDP) and the Global Shea Alliance was approved by the Green Climate Fund with a networth of $54.5million, a grant component of $30.1 million and Co funded by the government of Ghana with $24.4 million.
Launching the project, The Vice President noted that these grants acquired through the efforts of the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources and the Forestry Commission seeks to mitigate the effects of climate change on the fragile ecosystem of Northern Ghana as well as improve the shea value chain, especially for the Small Scale women shea entrepreneurs and this he said is highly commendable.
He added that the project will provide economic opportunities to develop shea and its byproducts which will be an important income generation activity for over 600,000 women in the northern sector.
Dr. Bawumia said with Ghana being the 4th largest producer of shea in the world, he believes the project when successfully implemented will change this status with the planting of 1.7 million shea trees over a 7-year period.
He said the Akufo-Addo government has since it's assumption into office supported scientific research on the shea plant to guard towards making the shea a reliable income generating product.
He thanked the Chief and partners of the project and hoped that the project will receive their full support and backing for it to be successful.
The Vice President also commended the Ministry under the abled leadership of the Sector Minister, Samuel A. Jinapor and the Forestry Commission for their relentlessness in efforts to ensure the launch and implementation of the project.
"This Ministry has lead the country to receive the highest grant amount to any Ghanaian government institution from the Green Climate Fund. They have made our country proud by living up to their mandate," he said.
Dr. Bawumia appealed to all chiefs and partners of the project to keep up the good work to ensure the successful implementation of the project and also called on farmers to own the programme and contribute to its success.
The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources Samuel A. Jinapor in his speech said the launch of this project will contribute significantly to the global fight against climate change and its effect.
Mr Jinapor stated that 9 out of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals will be achieved through this project, noting that the project will reduce some 6.4 million tons of carbon emissions in the first 7 years of the project life.
Quoting President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the Minister said "Climate Change is the greatest threat to the realisation of the sustainable development goal which has enormous impact on the fundamentals required for our survival on earth."
He said at the (COP) 26, he made a strong case for nature base solution to climate change because he believes that apart from supporting the lives and Livelihoods of some 1.6 billion citizens across the world, Forestry and Land use offer fast, reliable and empirical evidence based action to mitigate the effects of climate change.
He added that an effective implementation of this project is expected to improve a sustainable ecosystem services, Improve productivity level of the shear supply chain and Increase resilience in climate change.
The Minister hinted that as part of efforts to encourage afforestation, the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has accepted to launch the Green Ghana day on the 1st of March 2022.
He thanked the Vice President for accepting the invitation to the launch the GSLERP and for his show of kindness and exemplary leadership, stating that his contribution to Ghana is demonstrably unflinching.
Mr Jinapor also commended the Chiefs in the Northern Region for their support in placing a ban on production of charcoal for commercial and economic purposes which has also largely contributed to the reduction of carbon emissions.
A Representative who spoke on behalf of YAANAA, the Over Lord of Dagbong applauded the initiative saying that it will be a great avenue to reduce forest degradation, deforestation and expecially eradicate poverty in the northern zone as shea is the main source of livelihood for the women in the North.
He added that he is, therefore, eagerly looking forward to the implementation of this project as it will bring better opportunities for the people of the North.
The Italian Ambassador to Ghana, Daniela d’Orlandi in her address stated that since 2017, the Italian Ministry of Environment, Land and Sea has played a key role in Ghana's Climate Change Action and the Forestry sector such as Agriculture, with the ultimate goal of enhancing climate change action and enhancing sustainability.
She congratulated Ghana for attaining this feat, adding that Italy is proud to be a contributor to the Shea Lands Emission Reductions Project while assuring that their country will continue to support Ghana in the attainment of the United Nations Sustainable Development goals 5, 13 and 15.
The Representative from the United Nations Development Project, (UNDP) Madam Angela Lusigi, eulogized Ghana for being the leading African country to have moved beyond words to action and promised her organisation's committed support in this project and others yet to come.