Prime Minister Philip Davis yesterday tabled the Climate Change and Carbon Market Initiatives Bill, 2022, which provides a regulatory framework for the trade of carbon credits.

The move is expected to be provide significant financial benefit to the country.

During a communication on the bill, Davis said the government intends to play an active and powerful role in charting the way forward as the world moves to address climate change.

The bill seeks to give effect to the Paris Agreement – an international treaty on climate change to limit global warming to well below 2, preferably to 1.5 degrees Celsius, compared to pre-industrial levels.

The program will be managed through the shared ministerial responsibility of the prime minister, the Minister of Finance and the Minister responsible for the environment and natural resources.

The bill provides for the appointment of a management company and the appointment and functions of an advisory council, which shall have responsibility for serving as a technical advisory body to a management company.

The bill will also enable the establishment of a market in The Bahamas to trade in carbon credits.

Davis said the initiative seeks to participate in the global response to the threat of climate change, in ways that will also be of compensatory, practical, and environmental benefit to The Bahamas.

“While guidance on the implementation of the framework agreements will take time to be fully developed, a vibrant voluntary carbon credit marketplace already exists,” he said.

“This voluntary carbon market allows eco-conscious companies to offset their emissions beyond what is required by any government.”

He said with the goal is for all countries to reach net-zero by 2050, this provides The Bahamas with essentially 28 years to optimally benefit from the carbon market initiatives.

“By participating in and benefitting from the trade of carbon credits, The Bahamas will not be standing idly by, hoping that the rest of the world does right by us,” the prime minister added.

“This Bill will encourage us to positively engage with high carbon-emitting countries and companies. This Bill will ensure that the financial benefits arising from the trade-in carbon credits will be well-regulated, well-run, and well-managed. And in aligning with best practices established by the international agreements of which we are a part, this Bill will even further enhance the standing and reputation of The Bahamas as a good place to do business.”

Source: Eyewitness News