Prime Minister Freundel Stuart has warmly congratulated the United States Ambassador, Dr. Larry Palmer, for his outstanding contribution to Barbados and the region.

The two met recently, when the outgoing Ambassador paid his farewell call on the Prime Minister at his Bay Street Office.

During the discussions, the issue of climate change was raised. The Prime Minister asserted that climate change was here to stay and the fight must continue to mitigate its effects.

According to Mr. Stuart, worldwide events in Beijing, the United States (US), the United Kingdom and the Caribbean have put climate change ???beyond the realm of academics??? and countries must keep up their advocacy and hold each other to the commitments made in this area.

Ambassador Palmer agreed that climate change was an issue, citing changes in the Gulf Stream, devastation of glaciers and extreme weather in the US, as examples of the challenges that climate change has brought.

He spoke about the recently-held COP 21 meeting in Paris, where such issues were addressed, and lauded the Prime Minister for his contribution on behalf of the region.

???Washington is appreciative of your efforts. We think alike on issues regarding climate change and the use of alternative resources and I expect our cooperation to continue,??? he affirmed.

Mr. Stuart also raised the issue of competition in the rum industry from Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, which received subsidies from the US Government.

He noted that a lot of progress had not been made in this critical area and stressed that it must be urgently resolved, since the rum industry was extremely important to Barbados. The dignitaries also discussed the importance of renewable energy and security issues.

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