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Jan 26, 2023

Addressing Climate Change and Health Issues Through a Campaign

The Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre today launched a campaign for students in Belmopan on climate change and how it impacts health. The campaign, which will involve a variety of competitions, aims to capture their attention on this most important issue and how it will impact future generations if decisive action is not taken immediately to slow down those effects. News Five’s Marion Ali was at the George Price Centre for Peace and Development for the launch and filed this report.


Marion Ali, Reporting

It is believed that humans produced over thirty-three billion tons of carbon emissions from fossil fuel usage in 2021. Reversing that staggering amount of greenhouse gases is what climate change activists are emphasizing, if future generations are to survive the deadly toll that climate change effects can have on human life. Spearheading this five-year campaign is the Five Cs, Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre. Keith Nichols heads that centre.

Keith Nichols

Keith Nichols, Head of Department, Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre

“We are seeing the impacts of climate change on health over the years but we feel it’s necessary for the youths to get involved. They are our future. They’re the ones who will be suffering the impacts of our actions today and it is absolutely necessary that we can engage them so they can start thinking of the consequences on their own future, and their role in helping to influence a transformation towards a better living for themselves.”


Since the campaign targets students from ages nine to thirty, the appeal to those categories will have to vary. Saidy Godette is a lecturer at Galen University. She shared that the campaign has to have appeal to each category of students if it is to be successful.


Saidy Godette

Saidy Godette, Lecturer, Galen University

“You tend to learn better when you do the research and then you apply that knowledge creatively. So to catch the children, the younger group, you use more creativity. And for the older group you would then go into story-telling, which they’re also doing, again poetry completion and a letter to your leader, which gives them an opportunity to speak on their issues. If they understand the impacts of how cities grow and how pollution can happen as a result of that, then they have a better grasp of how important and vital attacking the issue of climate change is.”


The impacts of climate change can be starkly severe, going just by what we’re experiencing now, according to John Bodden, the Principal Public Health Inspector.


John Bodden

John Bodden, Principal Public Health Inspector

“If we have a flooding, we have people suffering from leptospirosis, we have skin disease. So we need to see what is the impact on our population because we might lose a house, we might lose other valuable assets but the most important one is what – the lives of our population.”


Each year, Belize attends the Conference of the Parties or COP, which has in attendance world leaders and climate change ministers.  The assembly looks at what climate change is doing on a global scale, but to address that problem, each country has to adapt new lifestyles to save our world. As Minister of Climate Change Orlando Habet indicated, in Belize it’s not just about setting new principles, but getting the masses to adhere.


Orlando Habet

Orlando Habet, Minister of Climate Change

“We have to look at how we can do it has to be a collaboration. We have the Forestry Department that looks after mangroves, we have the Department of Environment that looks after environment to see if something is going to be done if it is mitigatable or not, but then we have the communities that have their leadership role to play. You have village council, town councils, they also have to play a part.”


If every community in each country plays a part in promoting behavioural change to reserve climate change effects, perhaps collectively we can restore once thriving villages like Monkey River, which has lost much of its beach to climate change. Marion Ali for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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