Australia and Papua New Guinea have agreed to join forces to create an efficient and accessible carbon market for the region under the Indo-Pacific Carbon Offsets Scheme.

Following talks with PNG’s Special Climate Envoy and Minister for Environment, Conservation and Climate Change, Hon. Wera Mori in Glasgow, Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction, Hon. Angus Taylor announced PNG would be one of the first international partners to join the scheme.

Minister Taylor said: “Papua New Guinea has been longstanding leader on climate change, making a major contribution to the preservation of global forests. Australia is a world leader in emissions measurement and inventory management,” Minister Taylor said.

“The partnership will see our two countries share expertise to ensure Papua New Guinea is internationally recognised as a source of high-integrity carbon mitigation outcomes.”

Minister Mori said: “The signing of the MOU this morning between Papua New Guinea and Australia on Cooperation to Build Capacity for Participation in Global Carbon Markets is significant for us as a country to engage in the Indo-Pacific Carbon Offset Scheme which Australia is launching today.

“Papua New Guinea’s engagement in this scheme is critical given our on-going work on REDD plus in preparation to develop carbon markets and the country’s engagement under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement once concluded including our conservation efforts.

“While the negotiations are yet to be concluded in Article 6, Papua New Guinea agrees to a robust carbon trading system that is fair and promotes environmental integrity and sustainable development.

“The Government of Papua New Guinea congratulates Australia on the launch of the Indo-Pacific Carbon Offset Scheme and assure of our commitment through the Australia -PNG Climate Action Plan.”

Under the Indo-Pacific Carbon Offsets Scheme, Australia will share technical expertise in carbon accounting with countries in our region to enable them to meet new Paris Agreement emissions reporting obligations.

The scheme will deliver renewable energy and nature-based solutions projects to support neighbouring countries to reduce emissions and grow their economies.

Australia has also entered an early partnership with Fiji.

“Our partnership with Papua New Guinea will include a focus on encouraging private sector participation in carbon market activities, and emissions reduction projects that showcase Papua New Guinea’s potential for high-integrity offsets,” Minister Taylor said.

Minister Taylor said he and Minister Mori also discussed ambitions for COP26, and bilateral cooperation on energy access and on blue carbon.

The discussions and signing took place on the side-lines of COP26 on Wednesday 03 November 2021 and builds on the existing Australia PNG Climate Action Plan and complemented by recent passage of the Climate Change (Management) (Amendment) Bill 2021.