UK project contributes to strengthening Guatemala’s NDC ahead of COP26

The project worked with Municipalities of La Blanca, Ocos, Retalhuelu, Champerico and Coatepeque, in the Guatemalan Pacific coast. By collaborating with communities, civil society, the private sector and government agencies, the study determined the contributions to fight climate change of this specific landscape.

The parameters evaluated included the rate of deforestation in the area, the rational use of land for agriculture and the dependency of communities on the landscape to obtain sustainable livelihoods. Despite all these pressures, the landscape continues neutralizing Co2 and further preservation will help mitigate more emissions.

The project also proposed goals and actions to reduce the degradation and restoration of natural ecosystems and the establishment of sustainable practices in the management of agricultural crops, actions that are directly linked to the goals set out in the Nationally Determined Contribution of Guatemala (NDC).

Developed by the National Council of Sustainable Forest Management Standards of Guatemala (CONESFORGUA), the conclusions are endorsed by the Ministry of Environment of Guatemala, who is currently updating the country’s NDCs. Follow up actions from the Guatemalan Government will also comply with the project’s recommendations.

Antonio Urrutia, Director of Climate Change at the Guatemalan Ministry of Environment, said:

It is very important for us at the Government to have this kind of tools to take strategic decisions. Guatemalan mangroves prove to be resilient landscapes and we would like to replicate this methodology in other areas of the country.

Rita Mishaan, Climate Change Ambassador at the Guatemalan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said:

We would like this project to have sustainability and continue working with several partners to achieve more objectives. This will be critical ahead of COP26 to show Guatemala’s commitment towards tackling climate change.

Nick Whittingham, British Ambassador to Guatemala, said:

NDCs are at the heart of the Paris Agreement goal, set at COP21 in 2015, to hold the global temperature rise to well below two degrees and pursue best efforts to limit the increase to 1.5°C. We want to work with closely with Guatemala in achieving these goals.

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