• JIS News

    Jamaica’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) Implementation Plan, which outlines the country’s strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to mitigate the effects of climate change, has been officially launched.

    The plan was launched by Minister of Housing, Urban Renewal, Environment and Climate Change, Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr., during a virtual ceremony on Wednesday (September 29).

    Mr. Charles Jr., who is also Co-Chair of the NDC Partnership, a global coalition that provides financial and technical support for the development of NDC plans across the world, explained that the preparation for Jamaica’s NDC Implementation Plan began in June 2019, with support from the World Bank through its NDC support facility

    “It (World Bank) conducted a joint mission to determine a baseline for NDC implementation action and to assess the status of new sectors considered, meaning, we want to know where we can improve and where we would be able to identify in Jamaica the sectors that we would target to upgrade our commitment to the world to protect this planet,” he said.

    The Minister informed that Jamaica also got assistance under the NDC Partnership to review and update the country’s NDC , “meaning what are we going to do to make sure that we are playing our part as one important speck on this globe to mitigate the impacts [of climate change] and to ensure that we are committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions”.

    “Today, with plan in hand, we stand ready to take the next step on our journey to achieving our climate goals. The plan is a detailed analysis of Jamaica’s progress, to date, towards achieving the emission reduction commitments that we have set out in our NDC, and this was first submitted in 2015 and updated in June of last year,” he said.

    Mr. Charles Jr. pointed out that the implementation plan also identifies the potential barriers that the country needs to overcome, such as access to adequate financing, and outlines the strategies to prioritise resources and other actions that can be taken to ensure that Jamaica achieves its climate goals.

    “Those goals as set out in our revised NDC… represent an increase in ambition in both a broadening of sectoral scope of Jamaica’s NDCs as well as in the delivery of greater emission reductions. That means Jamaica is making itself not just a leader in terms of positions where I serve, where the Prime Minister [the Most Hon. Andrew Holness] serves, where our technocrats serve, but we are walking the walk,” he said.

    Mr. Charles Jr. further noted that by including the energy sector – supply and end use –  as well as the land use change and forestry sectors, the country, with international support, is targeting emission reductions of 28.5 per cent by 2030.

    “This is no easy feat. This is an ambitious target; we have to achieve it. That timeline of 2030 is not far away – less than a decade –  and so with this plan now, we can advance work on implementation as we strive towards the carbon neutrality and the climate resilient future that we need for all Jamaicans,” he said.

    The Minister noted that the ceremony,  staged by the Climate Change Division in the Ministry, was also convened to allow for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Pre-Conference of the Parties (Pre-COP26) Conversations.

    He said these engagements are important, given the urgency of climate change issues, and stressed that Jamaicans need to understand their responsibility and  the role their  behaviour has in impacting climate change.

    “The word is now; it’s not the future.  So these engagements allow us as a Government to have a platform to speak to our people, to have a conversation, to communicate, to hear your concerns and to listen to the things that you don’t understand, so we can clarify.  This is going to allow us to discuss issues on sea level, on the rising of the temperature, on the impact of pollution on our marine resources and how our own actions lead to consequences,” the Minister said.

    “Since Jamaica’s economic development is so dependent on natural resources, sustaining livelihoods and lives is critical, and so resilience building is paramount. So when we talk about climate action to combat the climate crisis, this is not just some ‘hairy fairy’ theoretical concept. This is us talking about how we as stakeholders, as human beings existing in this ecosystem that we call the planet earth, are going to protect life for generations to come,” he added.

    The Minister will be leading a delegation to participate in the global climate change conference, COP 26 in Glasgow, Scotland, in November.

    The Conference is expected to be attended by 40 to 50 countries, representatives of the UNFCCC Secretariat, the Chairs of the Subsidiary Bodies of the Convention and a number of stakeholders from civil society who play a key role in the fight against climate change or in the transition to sustainable development.

    It will be preceded by the usual Pre-COP, which is a preparatory meeting that brings together Climate and Energy Ministers from a selected group of countries to discuss and exchange views on some key political aspects of the negotiations and delve into some of the key negotiating topics that will be addressed at COP26.

    The Pre-COP, which is to be hosted at the Milan Conference Centre in Italy from September 30 to October 2, will be the final formal, multilateral opportunity for Ministers to shape the negotiations in detail ahead of the conference.

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