Fifteen years ago, Stephanie Browne, a former Member of Parliament in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, needed only to look at the beach outside her house to know why her community in Union Island was called “Big Sand”.
When the 193-member General Assembly hosted a high level meeting on climate change Monday, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned that any proposed agreement at an upcoming international conference in Paris in December must uphold the principle of equity.
From constructing barriers against rising sea levels to rehabilitating mangroves and providing agrometeorology services, the Caribbean isn’t waiting for a new international agreement on climate change to start implementing adaptation measures. But funding to roll out such projects on the necessary scale remains a key issue, and many communities remain desperately vulnerable to storms and flooding.
The United Nations, which is tasked with the protection of the global environment, has asserted that climate change affects people everywhere - with no exceptions.
With less than six months to go before the next full United Nations Conference of the Parties also known as COP 21 – widely regarded as a make-or-break moment for an agreement on global action on climate change – Caribbean nations are still hammering out the best approach to the talks.
Despite its highly variable climate, Guyana is the only Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country that enjoys food security. But rapid climate change could pose a challenge not only for Guyana, but for its Caribbean neigbours who depend on the South American country for much of their produce.
Small Island Developing States (SIDS) have championed the phrase “1.5 to stay alive” in demanding that global temperature increases be kept as far below 1.5 degrees C as possible to limit the anticipated devastating effects of climate change on the world’s most vulnerable countries.
In June 2014, Gaston Browne led his Antigua and Barbuda Labour Party to a resounding victory at the polls with a pledge to transform the country into an economic powerhouse in the Caribbean.
For 32 years, Joel Poyer, a forest technician, has been tending to the forest of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
Caribbean leaders on Saturday further advanced their policy position on climate change ahead of the 21st
Conference of Parties, also known as COP 21, scheduled for Paris during November and December of this year.
Henry Prince has lived in this fishing village for more than six decades. Prince, 67, who depends on the sea for his livelihood, said he has been catching fewer and fewer fish, and the decrease is taking a financial toll on him and other fisher folk throughout the island nation of Grenada.
So much information about climate change now abounds that it is hard to differentiate fact from fiction. Scientific reports appear alongside conspiracy theories, data is interspersed with drastic predictions about the future, and everywhere one turns, the bad news just seems to be getting worse.
Ten years have now passed, but Raghu Raja, a 27-year-old fisherman from the coastal village of Nemmeli in southern India’s Kanchipuram district, still clearly remembers the day he escaped the tsunami.
As a child growing up in Far North Queensland, William Clark Enoch would know the crabs were on the bite when certain trees blossomed, but now, at age 51, he is noticing visible changes in his environment such as frequent storms, soil erosion, salinity in fresh water and ocean acidification.
The lead negotiator for an inter-governmental organisation of low-lying coastal and small island countries doesn't mince words. She says the new international climate change treaty being drafted here at the ongoing U.N. Climate Change Conference “is to ensure our survival".