The Sustainable and Thriving Environment for West Africa Development (STEWARD), in collaboration with the National Protective Area Authority (NPAA) and with support of USAID, has completed a one day Policy dialogue forum on Reduction of Emission, Deforestation and Degradation (REDD)+ effort in Sierra Leone at the Miatta Conference Center Brookfield in Freetown during which the American Ambassador to Sierra Leone, promised continued support for such policies.
Making his remarks, the American Ambassador John Hoover described REDD+ as the greatest challenge facing the existence of the human race. The Ambassador said U.S. government has shown great commitment over the past years in working towards combating climate change and will continue to support STEWARD. He said partners around the world also need to meet the climate change challenges in many ways especially in protecting and restoring the world’s forest.
He said forests provide the best way to remove high amounts of carbon from the atmosphere and subsequently store it away from atmosphere but lamented that deforestation is responsible for up to 17% of global greenhouse gas emission.
He noted that healthy forests are essential to the livelihood and welfare of millions of people in both developed and developing countries. He said in the process of REDD+, women and youth must be recognized to make the process a reality.
A presentation was done by Executive Director of NPPA, Dr Kolleh Bangura on the reason for the introduction of REDD+ in Sierra Leone, its history, climate threats, government response and how as a country, we hope to proceed in the future.
Also speaking were Professor Felixtina Johnsyn, Dean, School of Environmental Sciences, Njala University and Madam Destina Samani, the Director of STEWARD.
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Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.