Grenada, Barbados, Dominica Warn UN on Impact of Climate Change


Above: Grenada’s Permanent UN Representative, Dessima Williams (UN Photo/Rick Bajornas)

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Grenada Permanent Representative to the United Nations Dessima Williams and Barbados Foreign Minister Sen. Maxine McClean urged the global body to pay attention to the effects of climate change on the region.

“Inaction or inadequate action is inexcusable and morally indefensible, given the level of the scientific evidence before us, and the technical and financial tools at our disposal to effect the necessary change,” McClean said Monday in New York.

McClean said there was “no greater threat” to the survival and viability of Barbados and other small island states than “potentially catastrophic” climate change.

“Barbados welcomes the decision taken in Durban to launch negotiations on a new legally binding agreement that would take effect after 2020,” she said. “However, for us, a post-2020 agreement is meaningless if ambitious actions are not taken now to reduce global emissions and provide finance and technology to vulnerable developing countries.”

Grenada’s Williams urged UN member states to move toward finalizing a new binding climate treaty by 2015.

“Without a legally binding climate regime to uphold environmental integrity, Caribbean and other small island states could lose the opportunity for achieving sustainability soon, and some could even disappear,” she said. “We see the upcoming COP 18 in Doha, Qatar as an opportunity to move decisively away from this scenario.”

Belize Foreign Minister Wayne Elrington said his country supported initiatives aimed at tackling the Caribbean’s problems, particularly climate change.

“The impact of climate change on our region has been direct and devastating, compelling us to work with our CARICOM partners and the wider Alliance of Small Island States to advance our interests in the climate change negotiation process.”

Dominica’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Vince Henderson, said his country was committed to environmental sustainability.

“The unsustainable consumption and production systems that continue to deplete the world’s resources and simultaneously contribute to global warming remains a major threat to the survival of those of us who live close to the world’s oceans,” he said. “The very vulnerability of Dominica to the effects of global warming underscores our commitment to a multilateral approach aimed at combating climate chnage.”


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