HP officials in discussions over carbon credits

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Shimla, Apr 23 (UNI) The Himachal Pradesh Government is in consultation with the World Bank over earning carbon credits from the forest cover of the state.

A seven member high-level delegation, comprising Additional Chief Secretary Avay Shukla and Principal Chief Conservator of Forest Pankaj Khullar, are in Costa Rica for deliberations with the World Bank officials, state Forest Minister J P Nadda said at press conference here yesterday.

He said the delegation would discuss various aspects of earning carbon credits over 15 rounds of meetings till May 5.

''The delegation will enter into an agreement on carbon credits with the bank, though the agreement will not be inked in this meeting, but all its vital aspects will be worked out, Mr Nadda said.

He further said the bank has extended carbon credit financing to India to encourage people to raise forests on private and community land in the Himalayan areas of the state.

The team would discuss details such as the form of implementation, distribution of carbon credits earned by the state and role of forest department, panchayats, local self government and private parties with the Bank, he added.

Mr Nadda also said the World Bank was keen on the project as this was the first such initiative by any state government in the country.

The team would also discuss the tree varieties to be planted in the state that absorb more carbon emissions resulting in better gains in the future, he said.

He added that the value of existing forest wealth would also be gauged and hoped that good gains would come the state's way in lieu of conservation efforts done by it.

UNI AS HS PY AS1449

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