President tells CCCCC Officials of Guyana’s planned advocacy for climate change in 2014

Today, (January 8) His Excellency President Donald Ramotar received a delegation from the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) which included Executive Director, Dr. Kenrick Leslie and Deputy Director and Scientific Adviser, Dr. Neville Trotz.

Among issues raised by President Ramotar was Guyana’s keen interest in promoting and supporting increased action in the Caribbean region on the issue of climate change.

President Ramotar indicated to the delegation that in light of the increasing and devastating impacts to the region from extreme weather events linked to climate change, Guyana will be advocating for climate change to be a main item for discussion at the next session of CARIOCM Heads of Government.  The President welcomed the recent statement by incoming Chairman of CARICOM, Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Ralph Gonsalves, which calls for CARICOM’s prioritisation of climate change issues.From left to right: Head of the Office of Climate Change Shyam Nokta, Deputy Director and Scientific Adviser of the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) Dr. Neville Trotz, President Donald Ramotar, Executive Director, CCCC Dr. Kenrick Leslie, and Technical Specialist Dr. Mark Bynoe

President Ramotar underlined the need for the region to be more vocal on climate change and the need for strong presence by CARICOM Heads of Government in 2014 at two main climate change fora; the UN Secretary General’s Climate Change Summit slated for September on the margins of the UN General Assembly, and the Conference of Parties Meeting of the Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) in Lima, Peru in December.

The need for enhancement of the region’s efforts at the technical level, particularly the negotiations in the UNFCCC for a targeted 2015 global agreement, was also raised. The President stressed the need for the region’s negotiators to be provided with clear guidance in accordance with the region’s position on key issues. President Ramotar indicated that while the region has a strong position on climate change as outlined in the Liliendaal Declaration of 2009, perhaps there exists room for a strengthening of that position. His Excellency indicated Guyana’s willingness to work with the CCCCC and CARICOM to support briefing sessions for the negotiators prior to major UNFCCC sessions.

President Ramotar took the opportunity to express Guyana’s recognition and unwavering support for the work of the CCCCC and introduced Shyam Nokta, Guyana’s representative to the Board of Governors of the Centre. The President noted that the Centre has a crucial role to play in providing scientific and technical advice to the region, while supporting the implementation of regional initiatives on climate change and fostering a progressive agenda on which the region can access opportunities for financing to support climate action.

President Ramotar also took the opportunity to underline Guyana’s interest in sharing its experience in developing and implementing a Low Carbon Development Strategy and its REDD+ initiatives, and to work with countries in the region that might be interested as is already being done with Suriname. The President informed the delegation that in 2014, Guyana will be giving priority to climate resilience and integrated water resources management under its LCDS, issues which he contends are also of importance for the region as a whole.(OP)


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