CEO of Caribbean Climate-Smart Accelerator, Racquel Moses, is calling for Caribbean countries to target grants instead of loans when seeking funds for climate action.
“When we say that we need climate finance, we keep getting access to loans, and low-interest loans. But, we need more grant money to prepare projects, to get projects ready, and to make ready for investment in order to attract the majority of the capital that is available for project development,” she told Loop News on Thursday.
“We need to get increasingly specific in how we talk about climate finance because we talk about climate finance like it’s one thing, like there is only one solution that is available,” she added. “But the reality is that what the region needs is a lot more grant money, and we need to start being more specific that that’s what we need.”
Caribbean Climate-Smart Accelerator is the main sponsor for this year’s Island Finance Forum, hosted by Island Innovation. The four-day virtual event, now underway, is being held under the theme “Investment for sustainable development”. The event, for which Trend Media Group is a partner, ends on Friday, April 29.
The forum brings together senior financiers, development partners, and regulators to share and exchange expertise on sustainable and inclusive financial structures in island communities.
The event features a series of interactive panels, roundtables, and keynote sessions.
Moses explained that the forum is meant to unlock the flow of funds to small island developing states for climate action.
“There are lots of funds available but just not always the right kinds of funds. And so, by having the Island Finance Forum, it’s an opportunity to have the discussions about what kinds of funds are needed and how they can be accessed,” she said.
She maintains that securing funding for climate action is crucial for Caribbean territories.
“This is the charge of our time,” she said. “In order for us to get the funds we need to protect Caribbean people, we need to focus on climate change.
“There are a host of reasons; we need to avoid creating climate refugees as we lose landmass, people lose their jobs, and crops aren’t producing so we don’t have food security,” she said. “All the things that climate change has already impacted, we need to prevent them from getting worse and try and roll back some of the changes if we can.”