IS THE DEBATE ON CLIMATE CHANGE LOSING ITS STEAM?
St. George -- Because small island developing states, such as Grenada are so vulnerable to sea level rise and other climate shocks, it is important to them that a legally binding agreement be arrived at to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 80 per cent by 2050 and keep global temperature rise this century to 1.5C.
But, as preparations get into high gear for the next climate change summit in Paris in December, Grenada's chief climate change negotiator, Spencer Thomas is not very optimistic.
He feels that this summit, which is referred to as the Conference of the Parties-21 (or COP-21) could be a repeat of what happened in Copenhagen in 2009 where negotiators left the conference with an agreement which many persons had not agreed to. He explained that the slow pace of the negotiations to date has fuelled his scepticism of a good outcome from the Paris talks.
Caricom, which negotiates as part of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), is seeking to have a legally binding agreement in which developed countries commit to cutting their emissions, limiting global temperature rise to 1.5C, and putting up sums of money to help developing countries adapt to and recover from exposure to severe climate events like longer periods of drought, more intense and more frequent hurricanes, and coastal erosion from sea-level rise.