Several Caribbean Community Member States showcased their ambitions to further address climate change at a CARICOM ‘Moment of Ambition’ event held to mark the fifth anniversary of the adoption of the Paris Agreement.
Member State representatives presented highlights of their enhanced National Determined Contributions (NDCs) at the event, hosted by the CARICOM Secretariat and the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC), in partnership with the UK Government.
The event was convened to demonstrate continued Small Island Developing States (SIDS) leadership and ambition and to underscore the need for immediate climate action internationally. It was hosted to celebrate the Paris anniversary, and in an effort to amplify the voice of CARICOM SIDS.
Snapshots from the event included:
“Barbados will strive to reduce its GHG emissions, across its entire economy to zero, by 2030 and intends to become fossil fuel free over the next 10 years.”
“The intention is to recover energy from waste streams and to use biomass to provide some firm generation capacity. These sources of renewable energy, combined with energy storage, will provide approximately 1,400 gigawatt hours of energy annually to power homes and cars.”
“The vision is that by 2030, the average Barbadian household will have solar PV panels on their roofs and an electric vehicle in their garage as the country moves to a more distributed and more resilient, model of both energy generation and storage.”
Hon. Adrian Forde, Minister of Environment and National Beautification
“Grenada submitted its Second Nationally Determined Contribution to the UNFCCC on November 30th 2020. That Second NDC commits Grenada to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 40% from 2010 levels by 2030 by taking priority action in the energy, domestic transport, forestry, waste, and cooling sectors.”
“This NDC is much more inclusive than the first one and includes consideration of youth, children, women and other vulnerable groups, as well as loss and damage. The integration of loss and damage is very important to Grenada as it reflects the significant recognition that adaptation and mitigation actions are not enough to address climate change.”
“Grenada indicated that the COVID-19 pandemic has provided the region and international community at large with a golden opportunity to reset and refocus development programming and to integrate COVID-19 recovery packages and ecosystem-based approaches with the implementation of new and updated NDCs.”
Hon. Simon Stiell, Minister for Climate Resilience
“Jamaica submitted its revised Nationally Determined Contributions on June 30th 2020, making it one of only 18 other countries in the world to have done so to date.
“Jamaica’s revised NDC is considerably more ambitious than its first, comprising both a broadening of sectoral scope and the delivery of deeper emissions cuts. For the first time, the NDC includes the land-use change and energy sectors as they move towards an economy-wide target.”
“Also, under this NDC, Jamaica, despite being a developing country and a Small Island Developing State, will move closer to decoupling economic growth from its emissions profile.”
“The decision to include the change of land-use, reflects the importance of the Forestry Sector to Jamaica, which accounts for more than half of the island’s total land use, and the important commitments that the country has made to preserve and enhance these stocks.”
“The country has identified opportunities to deepen the emission reductions it delivers in the energy sector. These opportunities are part of an increasingly comprehensive approach to decarbonising the sector, which covers both the electricity generation and energy use sub-sectors.”
Hon. Pearnel Charles, Jr, Minister of Housing, Urban Renewal, Environment and Climate Change
In reflecting on the Government of Belize’s Chairmanship of the Alliance of Small Island Developing States (AOSIS) 2019-2020 it was noted:
“In the past two years, Belize as the Chair of the Alliance of Small Island States has embraced the duty to advance the cause of the vulnerable, and to advocate for systemic change and robust global responses for the gravest challenges humanity faces, so that no one, nowhere should ever have to ponder their survival.”
Some of Belize’s key accomplishments during their Chairmanship included:
- Demonstrating the leadership of small island developing states as the first major grouping to table a Climate Ambition Package at the 2019 Climate Action Summit. That package headlined AOSIS Members commitment to enhanced NDCs, to aim for 100 percent renewable energy by 2030, to pioneer new approaches to resilience-building and to innovate financial solutions to bridge the climate adaptation finance gap while also managing debt sustainably.
- Convening the Placencia Ambition Forum in April 2020 positioning AOSIS as a convenor of climate actors, driving and sustaining climate ambition.
- Securing international endorsement of a five-year plan to accelerate progress on the SIDS Accelerated Modalities of Action (S.A.M.O.A) Pathway at the Mid-term High-level Review of the SIDS sustainable development agenda in 2019.
- AOSIS held fast to key milestones of that plan and pressed forward with a call to the United Nations Secretary General for the elaboration of a multi-dimensional vulnerability index to finally give effect to the special case of small island developing states in the international financial system. The UN system has responded swiftly with UNDP already preparing one version of the index, while the resident coordinators in the different SIDS regions are also refining their contributions to the index. Recently, Jeffrey Sachs, renowned economist and Director of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network has thrown his support and his network behind these efforts.
Hon. Ramon Cervantes, Minister of State, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Immigration
Learn More: CARICOM