For Guyana, green path passes through oil


Fisherman sets his net on southern Guyana’s Rupununi River. (Photo by Barbara Fraser)

Passengers arriving at Cheddi Jagan International Airport in Georgetown, the capital of Guyana, are greeted by a sign that reads: “Guyana, land of many waters – Gateway to the green economy.” So it might seem counterintuitive that the green future that this tiny South American country envisions is likely to be bankrolled by the extraction of more than six billion barrels of oil and gas from offshore deposits. Yet this is very much the concept presented in “The Green State Development Strategy: Vision 2040,” a 20-year development plan issued by the Guyanese government in May. Drafted with help from the UN Environment Program and with input drawn from public consultations, the strategy calls for channeling petrodollars into a sovereign wealth fund, to be called the Natural Resources Fund. The fund, the document says, would be used to build a green economy, one that will “lift people out of poverty” and... [Log in to read more]

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