JIS News

Minister of Water and Housing, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, has given an assurance of Jamaica’s commitment to co-operating with the legal framework of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
He says that Jamaica will also seek to influence its Caribbean partners to adopt strategies to mitigate problems associated with climate change.
Dr. Chang was responding to a request from Japanese State Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Koichi Takemasa, for Jamaica’s co-operation on the issue, during a courtesy call on the Minister at his Ministry in New Kingston today (May 4).
He said that the Government of Jamaica shares the concern of the Japanese government on climate change, as small island states are particularly vulnerable to the impact of climate change.
“It is a matter of some urgency for these islands. I will certainly hold continued discussions with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, in ensuring our co-operation on the legal framework for the national conventions alluded to in the UNFCCC,” Dr. Chang said.
“We are a small island, but we will use our influence to work with other small islands to ensure that there are maximum efforts to take steps to mitigate and adapt to the emerging problems of climate change,” he added.
Mr. Takemasa said that Japan is very appreciative of Jamaica expressing an intention to associate with the Copenhagen Accord of the Conference to the Parties to the UNFCCC.
“I would like to reiterate that Japan takes very seriously, the impact of climate change on small island states and Japan wishes, together with Jamaica, for the success of the Conference to the Parties to the UNFCCC,” Mr. Takemasa stated.
The UNFCCC is an international treaty which most countries in the world joined over a decade ago, in a bid to consider what can be done to reduce global warming and cope with temperature increases. More recently, a number of nations gave their approval to an addition to the treaty, the Kyoto Protocol, which has more powerful and legally binding measures.
The negotiating process on climate change revolves around the sessions of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC, which meets every year to review the implementation of the Convention. The COP adopts decisions and resolutions and publishes reports of these decisions which form the basis for a detailed set of rules for practical and effective implementation of the Convention.
The Caribbean, in its own way, has responded to the issue of climate change, through the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) which coordinates the region’s response. Established in August 2005, the centre is the key connecting point for information on climate change issues, and on the region’s response to managing and adapting to climate change in the Caribbean.
Discussions between Dr. Chang and Mr. Takemasa also focused on the Kingston Metropolitan Area (KMA) Water Supply project, as well as economic relations between Japan and Jamaica.

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