Climate change will be in focus next week when Barbados hosts a United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Expert Meeting for Small Island Developing States (SIDS).
The high-level three-day meeting, which is being held at Hilton Barbados, Needhams Point, St. Michael, from October 9 to 11, will examine the topic: Loss and Damage Associated with the Adverse Effects of Climate Change.
Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, Christiana Figueres, will be in Barbados for the opening of the meeting, and is expected to view the effects of climate change on the island’s coasts on Sunday, October 7.
On Monday, October 8, she will deliver a public lecture on the topic: Is Anything Being Done on Climate Change, at the Frank Collymore Hall, Central Bank of Barbados, The City at 7:00 p.m.
Ms. Figueres will also deliver remarks during the official opening ceremony of the meeting at Hilton Barbados on Tuesday, October 9 at 9:00 a.m.
The meeting will focus primarily on approaches to address loss and damage associated with climate change impacts related to slow onset events, loss and damage at the national, regional and international levels and also seeks to share links and synergies between approaches, regional priorities and key messages.
Climate change is of concern to SIDS countries like Barbados especially as the intensity of hurricanes, storm surges and the threat of tsunamis and other natural events increases. In addition, rising sea temperatures are also having an impact on the island’s coral reefs, resulting in mass bleaching events.
According to information from the Climate Change Secretariat, the international effort under the UN to construct an adequate and comprehensive response to climate change has advanced more in the past two years than in the past 10, but more still needed to be done.
It added that the emerging system of action to deal with climate change at all levels offers not only a solution to climate change, but a fast track to sustainability away from an old economic model that is failing.
Small island developing states have a key role to play in designing solutions needed and making use of the tools being put in place to respond to the challenges posed by climate change.