Economy December 6, 2023 | 3:51 pm

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Dominican Republic recognized for reforestation efforts by World Bank at COP28

At COP28, the Dominican Republic’s Minister of Environment and Natural Resources, Miguel Ceara Hatton, reaffirmed the government’s commitment to expanding forest cover and preserving water sources. Carlos Felipe Jaramillo, Vice President of the World Bank for Latin America and the Caribbean, praised the Dominican Republic’s reforestation efforts.

The Dominican Republic is one of the few countries that have successfully maintained and expanded their forest cover in recent decades, noted Jaramillo. The country currently boasts a forest cover of 42% of its territory, with 38% dedicated to forestry and the remainder to agroforestry.

However, the Dominican Republic faces challenges related to crop cutting practices, which can lead to fires and other risks. To address these issues, the government has launched the National Reforestation and Restoration Plan 2023-204, with the goal of planting the equivalent of about 200 square kilometers.

The primary objectives of this initiative are to contribute to carbon dioxide (CO2) capture and, critically, to regulate the country’s water levels. Given that the Dominican Republic receives approximately 1,500 millimeters of rainfall and faces limitations in water storage capacity, this effort is essential.

Minister Ceara Hatton emphasized that the project’s success relies on government and community participation, with most of the financing coming from the government. Moreover, the private sector has shown interest, participating through a framework that guarantees the right to plant and harvest, fostering trust and encouraging long-term investments.

During the panel discussion, Minister Ceara Hatton showcased the Reforestation and Forest Restoration Plan as a resilient and sustainable practice implemented in the Dominican Republic.

Minister Ceara Hatton led the Dominican Republic’s delegation to COP28 and participated in various activities related to the event. Upon his departure, the official representation was entrusted to Milagros De Camps, Vice Minister of Climate Change and Sustainability.

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