Minister of the Environment and Drainage Dr Denis Lowe has issued a warning for Barbados as it seeks to combat the dangers of climate change.
He has insisted that this country perform its due dilligence so it can put the right measures in place to cushion any backlash from the forces of nature.
“If we are going to be able to successfully work towards combatting the damaging effects of climate change, it becomes extremely important for us to build out . . . relationships [with appropriate agencies] so that we are able to manage our programmes, whether on the adaptation side or otherwise, to ensure success is had across all small island developing states,” the Minister told the opening of a three-day climate change training workshop at the Radisson Aquatica this morning, organized by the UDNP’s Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN).
“Equally important are the ways and means of how we go about making the necessary changes, in the way we do things. We need to perform our due dilligence to ensure that our choices are appropriate, and bear the least externalized impacts on our social, economic and environmental well-being.”
The environment minister suggested that it could not be business as usual, as he appealed for all to go into change mode to effectively fight climate change.
“The global community, in concert, made a call to keep sea level rise at two degrees Celsius or below and, of course you know, small island developing states as represented by AOSIS, continues to call for sea level rise at 1.5 [Celsius]. The truth is, that our survival as small island, low-lying states, depend heavily on us continuing to advocate for such an achievement,” he added.
Lowe is of the view that unless countries like Barbados do this, “we may well wake up one day and find that either ourselves or neighbours are lost and lost forever”.
He recalled that at a recent climate summit in New York, Barbados joined other nations in calling for improved access to current funding mechanisms, such as the Green Climate Fund and the Adaptation Fund.
It was noted that these funding mechnisms must deliver the enabling systems which will ensure that small island developing states and lesser developed countries, successfully pursue their adaptation and mitigation procedures.
Lowe therefore believes that “for us to be successful in this endeavour, small island developing states need to address the legislative, institutional, social, attitudanal, economic, situational and cultural barriers to the development and transfer of technology, whether they exist at the national, regional or at the international levels”.
The workshop was also addressed by the UNDP’s Industrial Development Officer in the Cleaner and Sustainable Production Unit, Dr Patrick Nussbaumer, and the Programme Officer for the UN Environment Programme, Manfredi Caltagirone.
The objectives of the workshop include presentation of the CTCN and its services and identifying the needs and priorities of the National Designated Entities (NDEs), to enable them to effectively perform their roles and enable their countries to benefit from CTCN services.
The sessions will also provide training on stakeholder mapping, engagement and consultation, building and nurturing networks at the national level, ensuring alignment between CTCN activities and national plans and policies and developing and priortizing requests.