As Jamaica marks its fifth year of ratifying the Paris Agreement, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Senator Matthew Samuda, is calling for increased partnership between the public and private sectors in addressing the issue of climate change.
“Partnerships are integral to our success, so we absolutely cannot understate the important role that you all can play as our partners in reducing our vulnerability to the changing climate,” the Senator said.
He was speaking at this year’s staging of ‘Uncut Conversations on Climate Change’, an unscripted, open multi-stakeholder forum, on Thursday, May 5 at The Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel in Kingston.
Senator Samuda informed that the Government is working to ensure that Jamaica can benefit from the implementation of the Paris Agreement, which was ratified in 2017.
The Agreement sets out a global framework to avoid dangerous climate change by limiting global warming to well below two degrees Celsius and pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
A central aim of the Agreement is to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change as well as the ability of countries to deal with the impacts.
The private sector has a key role to play by decreasing its carbon footprint and devoting funds for adaptation measures, technology, capacity-building and mitigation actions.
“Public funds are simply not enough to address the adversity of climate change; therefore, we need financing from all available sources – public, private, domestic, and international – if we truly want to transition to low carbon and climate resilience,” Senator Samuda said.
The Senator contended that it is within the private sector that the investments for transformation to low carbon and climate-resilient society rest, adding that he is encouraged by the engagement of the representatives who participated in the ‘Uncut Conversations’ sessions, which began on Wednesday (May 4).
He stressed the need for urgent action.
“There is an urgency of now as it relates to the Paris Agreement; The world is now in implementation mode and so is Jamaica,” he said, noting that the Government will continue to lead through appropriate policy and institutional framework.
In July 2020, Jamaica became the first Caribbean country to submit a stricter climate plan to the United Nations under the Paris Agreement, by adding targets for forestry and stepping up limits on greenhouse gas emissions.
Director General in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Dr Sharon Morrison, in her remarks, described the five-year anniversary of Jamaica’s ratifying of the Agreement as “special”.
“Because we are on the front lines of the growing and worsening impacts of climate change, this milestone represents our continued commitment to being at the forefront of climate action,” she said.
Also in attendance were Opposition Spokesperson on Land, Environment and Climate Change, Senator Sophia Binns; Resident Representative for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Denise Antonio; Director of Enterprise Group at Huawei Technologies, Courtney Hamilton; partners from the Green Climate Fund; other private-sector partners as well as international development partners.