The partnership aims to conserve and increase forestland in Kazakhstan while reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 15%. This will help in reaching commitments outlined in the 2016 Paris Agreement.
The agreement between Bitfury and the UNDP is set to be signed later this month. Following this, the project will commence with the aim of creating 20 hectares of forestland that will consume carbon dioxide in the area that is created by coal-powered electricity needed to supply fuel to BitFurys operations. With the new forest area, Bitfury will hope to offset the companies carbon footprint by 100 – 110%.
Although Kazakhstan already has 29 million hectares of the forest the majority faces the threat of forest fires, logging, and changes in land use. Financial mechanism expert at the Biodiversity Financing Initiative Meruyert Sarsembayeva informed reporters that only a small portion of the 29 million hectares is protected, commenting:
We will work with forests that are not being considered and managed. It is exactly these forests that are threatened by forest fires and illnesses. If they are not legitimized and transferred to the state forest fund, it may lead to that, they will produce even more emissions.
The Forest agreement between blockchain development firm Bitfury and UNDP falls under the initiative of Biodiversity Financing Initiative (BIOFIN) as part of work to improve the management of forest and practices to raise public awareness about emission reductions.
The work of BIOFIN aims to help on a global scale. Encouraging countries to assess their spending on biodiversity, reassess strategies and their approach to funding and achieving green energy goals.
With the support of the UN Kazakhstan has piloted a five-year project that focuses on heating residential buildings, via this the country has already reduced annual energy consumption by 25-45%. The country aims to source 50% of energy from sustainable sources by 2050.
A UNDP representative, Yakup Beris comments on the joint forest project:
The first carbon reduction initiative for Kazakhstan […] we hope that it will accelerate the country’s efforts to reduce carbon dioxide in partnership with the private sector. These practical solutions will require institutionalization and expansion.
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