Dominica’s PM urges regional countries to collaborate more on climate change issues – caribbeannationalweekly.com
Dominica’s Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit is calling on Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries to learn from the experiences of other regional blocs like Asia and the Pacific, particularly as it relates to dealing with the impact of climate change.
“Dominica is fully prepared to share the lessons and experiences from its efforts at becoming the first climate-resilient nation in the world,” Skerrit told the opening of the two-day High-Level Conference on Building a Science and Data Based Agenda for Decision-making on Resilience in the Caribbean on Thursday night.
Skerrit told the event organized by the Climate Resilience Execution Agency for Dominica (CREAD), the Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research, and the Organization of American States (OAS) that it is his country’s firm desire to see the Caribbean become the first climate resilient region in the world.
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“And so, I’m putting out a challenge to our regional organizations like CARICOM, CANARI, CIMH, CDEMA, the 5 C’s, and others like the OAS and NOAA to set up a climate-resilient action learning program around the activities of CREAD,” Skerrit said.
“So serious am I about this that I intend to table resolutions on this, first in my Cabinet and Parliament and thereafter in the OECS and CARICOM. We must learn together, or we will stagnate apart,” he added.
Skerrit told the ceremony that the reality is that climate change is already upon the region and while “we are already dealing with its impacts, not only are we seeing stronger, larger, more frequent storms, but more intense droughts, record heat waves, invasive species, among others.
“The fact that the world’s major polluters are not taking sufficient action to halt global warming beyond 1.5 degrees Celsius, makes it imperative that we accelerate action and our own efforts towards building resilience.”
He said next month, the world will gather in Egypt for the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 27) to discuss these issues.
Skerrit said consistent with the resilience-building agenda of his country, he is fully committing himself and the government to the outcomes of the conference here.
Among the aims of the conference is to identify critical gaps in the availability and use of science-based data to support decision-making on vulnerability reduction and resilience building in the Caribbean.
It is also intended to assess good practice and lessons learned from national, regional, and global resilience building as well as develop an agenda of collaboration among Caribbean governments and regional and international agencies to address these critical data gaps in the short, medium, and long term.