JIS News

Prime Minister the Hon. Bruce Golding, says that Jamaica has done “reasonably well” in striking a balance between development and the protection of the environment but admits that much more needs to be done.
“We have done considerable work in the policies that we have developed over time and in the regulations that we have presented,” the Prime Minister said.
“We have done a fair bit of work in terms of hazard mapping, we …still have a far way to go, but in terms of development plans for the island and development orders that will guide and inform the kind of activities that can take place in particular areas, we have just started cracking the surface,” he added.
He was delivering the keynote address last night (December 8) at the opening ceremony of the 4th Caribbean Conference on Comprehensive Disaster Management (CDM) and Exhibition at the Rose Hall Resort and Spa in Montego Bay.
The Prime Minister informed that development plans are already in place for two parishes while a third is being worked on.
He noted that among the areas that Jamaica has been found wanting, is in enforcement.
“It’s one thing to promulgate, it’s one thing to lay out the dos and the don’ts, but if we don’t support that with a strong effective enforcement machinery with appropriate sanction, then the outcome is not going to be what the inputs had expected, and that’s where I think we have much pulling up of socks to do,” he said.
As it relates to global warning and the natural hazards associated with the phenomenon, the Prime Minister said that these were not new to the region.
“We have to recognise that our vulnerability preceded global warming, preceded the acceleration we have seen in global warming; we just have a natural exposure to natural hazards,” he pointed out.
He said that the region has an obligation to recognise that decisions at world environmental conferences alone will not solve its environmental problems, or rescue it from disasters of the kind of which the region has some experience.
The five-day conference, which ends December 11, has attracted some 250 participants from about 30 countries in the Caribbean, Latin America and the South Pacific.

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