The peace process which has ended the decades-long Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) insurgency in Colombia is a compelling example of how climate measures can be incorporated for the benefit of all parties. During the insurgency, FARC controlled huge swathes of the Colombian rainforest, meaning that it was not open for economic exploitation and environmental damage. At the end of the insurgency, the Colombian government feared large scale logging and slash and burn agriculture would devastate the rainforest, which has become a significant global carbon sink.
Instead, the Colombian government enlisted the help of Norway, the UK and Ireland who spent 300 million US dollars between 2017 and 2020 on rainforest conservation measures as a form of carbon offset. This will be part of an almost 2 billion US$ conflict recovery package which will help to link post-conflict recovery policies to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The Colombian government also integrated a carbon tax to help pay for former FARC fighters to be reintegrated into society.
The peace deal represents not only an example of how cooperation on climate can open up new avenues to peace, but also an example of how governments are adjusting national security goals to help deliver climate security.
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