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Feb 17, 2016

Climate Change: Critical Decisions Taken by CARICOM

The Conference of Parties 21, recently convened and concluded in Paris, has been dubbed a milestone session of world leaders where a concerted effort to understand, address and mitigate climate change is concerned. The challenge for CARICOM now lies in working out the tangible nuts and bolts which lead to binding treaty mechanisms and legislation. The process started in earnest last week in Belize, when high level regional technical experts did the groundwork in formulating matters for ratification at the Intersessional Meeting in Placencia. The Chairman of CARICOM today told the media that on the climate change front, critical decisions have been taken.

 

Dean Barrow

Dean Barrow, Chair, CARICOM
“We’re very pleased at the outcome of the COP 21 and I should make the point that all who was in attendance at COP 21 in Paris agreed that the CARICOM team covered itself in glory and really achieved pretty much every goal that it set out to attain. And so we commend the team; we are of course determined that we maintain the engagement full scale, full on, so that we can support our goal of one point five degrees Celsius, noting that at the current levels of commitment, temperatures would rise to more than two point seven degrees. So while CARICOM was able to get a references and a recognition of our goal, the fact is that the way things are currently proceeding we would not realize that goal and therefore the pressure must be maintained. The task force on sustainable development which was led by Doctor, the Honorable James Fletcher from Saint Lucia—and who really is a wealth of knowledge and expertise and again does our community proud—that task force will continue the work to facilitate the implementation of the agreement reached in Paris. You will recollect that while there were commitments made by various countries to certain outcomes, there was not the kind of binding treaty mechanism that would absolutely guarantee the results. So there has to be this continuing process of engagement so that there can be no doubt as to putting flesh on the bones.”

 

A signing ceremony on concrete agreements out of COP 21 is set for April in New York.

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