August 15, 2020

Serve as ‘Test Case’ for climate-related technologies, Grenada urges Caribbean nations


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From WIC

UNITED NATIONS: The island country has called on other Caribbean nations and Small Island Development States (SIDS) to serve as ‘test cases’ for nationwide implementation of climate-related technologies and advances.

While addressing in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) debate, Grenada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Peter David said the Caribbean also represents some of the most globally compelling business cases for sustainable renewable energy investment.

“Being climate smart goes beyond policies,” he said. “It goes beyond resilient housing, resilient infrastructure and resilient agriculture.

David said that the region can also serve as a global beacon for renewable energy and energy efficiency in the Caribbean.

“We aim to not only be resilient, but with our region’s tremendous potential in hydro-electricity and geothermal energy, we could also be climate smart.” he added.

In understanding the need to rethink the Caribbean’s adaptation to climate change, David said the Government of Grenada has established a new “over-arching” ministry, titled the Ministry of Climate Resilience, Environment, Fisheries, Forestry, Disaster Management and Information.

He said its mandate is to “work speedily to ensure that ingrained in every aspect of our country’s development is the question of addressing climate change and climate resilience”.

The Minister claimed that Grenada is also currently shifting some of its macroeconomic focus to ensure attention is paid to the development of its green and blue economies.

“Road to climate-smart sustainability is long and arduous, it is not insurmountable, and we must ensure that we are strategic in this journey”. said Foreign Affairs Minister.

In building climate-smart and sustainable societies, David said the inherent need to improve the of citizens and the conditions for fostering good must not be discounted.

But, he said, unfortunately, like many Caribbean Community (CARICOM) states and other developing nations, Grenada struggles with the scourge of non-communicable diseases.

He, therefore, called for global leadership and looks forward to international solutions “that would preserve the health of our people, promote longevity and sustain our future.”

He said correspondent banking and de-risking, blacklisting and middle-income status graduation are measures that negatively affect Caribbean economies.

“The unilateral and premature graduation of many Small Island Developing States to Middle Income Status without consideration of our region’s specific vulnerabilities has resulted in significant budgetary shortfalls, adversely affecting our economic and social development,” David said, pointing out that the region has inherent structural economic challenges that already restrict the pace of its development.

“We ask that these impediments to growth be considered when our matters arise for consideration,” he said.

David noted that the has pioneered the use of vulnerability indices when setting the terms of its financing, and urged international partners to work toward “an acceptable ‘’ that holistically assesses our countries’ development and risks”.

Moreover, David said the withdrawal of correspondent banking services to CARICOM member states can be seen as an economic assault that would destabilise the financial sector of our already vulnerable economies.

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