PNG climate office director suspended

By Ilya Gridneff (See also Iilya’s Blog, aptly named “Papua News Guinea“)

Papua New Guinea’s Office of Climate Change (OCC) director Dr Theo Yasause has been suspended while an internal investigation of the office is carried out.

PNG’s cabinet decided last Friday to sideline Yasause after much speculation surrounding his role.

A PNG government source told AAP a statement would be made on the matter next week.

Yasause has vehemently denied any wrongdoing after a series of media reports highlighted anomalies with the OCC issuing multi-million dollar carbon trading deals without any policy or legislation in place.

Yasause denied any money had exchanged hands in the deals but documents obtained by AAP showed Australian company Carbon Planet paid $1.2 million for projects in PNG.

Leaked documents to The Economist magazine showed Yasause had made deals on a range of other projects throughout PNG.

When AAP asked Yasause about the deals at a news conference in Port Moresby on June 15 he said even though the leaked documents appear to carry his signature, the OCC’s official seal and another colleague’s signature, they did not represent real deals.

“It’s not a false document but a sample,” he said.

Asked why he would make sample documents, he said: “We want to see what it looked like.”

PNG Department of Environment and Conservation secretary Dr Wari Iamo will become acting OCC director while an investigation is held, the National newspaper reported.

AusAID has announced a corporate planning adviser will be placed in the OCC office for three months as part of the $3 million pledged under the Australia-PNG carbon initiative.

PNG has the world’s third-largest rainforest and the government has great interest in turning the asset into carbon trading revenue, but at present no such policy or legislation exists in PNG nor under UN guidelines.


Read Also: How to Grow Money on Trees


4 thoughts on “PNG climate office director suspended

  1. sigh.

    well let’s see what really happened. I don’t want to speculate as yet.

    If governments really want to increase the viability and convince countries that ‘experiments’ such as this work, they seriously need to build mechanisms in which to defend themselves when all hell breaks loose. Controversy such as this undermines the reputation of carbon trading schemes – which sound good in theory and seem to benefit all parties involved a) developing countries increasing revenue and b) countries who may be eventually be susceptible to international scrutiny if their emissions are exceedingly and dangerously high.

    I think it would be stupid to enter agreements with countries who already are embroilled in controversy in terms of their national logging industries such as PNG. But I’m sure that agencies such as Carbon Planet already know this, but whose interests are they really trying to secure (by foregoing truths that are already universally acknowledged)? There’s no strict transparency and accountability mechanisms involved.

  2. Good riddance!

    Now terminate the services of his globe trotting American friend too. Get rid of shady characters and appoint credible people to push our agenda.

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