Panama City, Panama, June 15, 2012. – The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) signed a Technical Cooperation Agreement with the National Environmental Authority (ANAM) and the German Agency for International Cooperation to apply mechanisms that will reduce emissions in the Canal Watershed.

The agreement aims to establish the terms and conditions for the design and implementation of a pilot program in the Panama Canal Watershed, compensation mechanisms for the sustainable management of forest resources that can be replicated nationwide, under the parameters of Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD +).

In a ceremony held yesterday, the document was signed by Panama Canal Authority (ACP) Administrator Alberto Alemán Zubieta, ANAM Administrator Lucia Chandeck, and Laszlo Panzel, from the German Agency for International Cooperation and Program Director for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD +).

During the signing ceremony Alemán Zubieta said: “With this agreement, Panama is in a win-win position to reduce the effects of carbon emissions, as we will also be able to capture carbon. This agreement with the German government will benefit our country.”

The Panama Canal carries out activities aimed at improving the quality of life for residents of the Canal Watershed, an area of ​​strategic importance to the country because it houses the water sources, supplies potable water to more than half of the Panamanian population and provides sufficient water for the safe and continuous operation of the Canal.

The mechanism for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD +) that will be applied in Panama for the first time, will highlight the service that forests provide the world by storing large amounts of carbon emissions. This program will offer innovative alternatives for producers in the Canal Watershed and, at the same time, the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions will have positive effects in reducing deforestation and forest degradation.

REDD + activities focus on the conservation of carbon reserves and also on the sustainable management of forests. This program will encourage the transition from certain activities that affect the forests to others that are sustainable, thus reducing harmful patterns of land use.