Small Island States Must Address Climate Change Mitigation


Chief Technical Director in the Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change, Lt. Col. Oral Khan, says that while Small Island Developing States (SIDS) such as Jamaica, are not the major contributors to greenhouse gas emissions, they must play a part in the mitigation agenda.

He said that as Jamaica works towards Vision 2030, “we recognise that we not only have to adapt to the impacts of climate change, but also support appropriate mitigation policies and actions, if we are to achieve this goal”.

Lt. Col. Khan was bringing greetings at the opening ceremony for the Analysis and Investigation for Low Emission Growth (AILEG) project symposium on Tuesday, July 9, at the Jamaica Pegasus hotel, New Kingston.

The AILEG project, which is being funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), helps to build the capacity of the Government and key stakeholders to analyze low emission development strategies (LEDS), and integrate them into economic development, strategic planning, and implementation.

LEDS accelerate sustainable economic growth and investments while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and building climate resilience. Through AILEG, the government can find cost-effective, sustainable options in climate policy planning, economic modeling, and impact analysis.

The Chief Technical Director said that as developing countries such as Jamaica try to find solutions that will enable growth, interventions such as AILEG will “put us in an informed position to enable us to attract investments in low emission technologies and projects”.

He pointed out that under the AILEG project, “we have an opportunity to balance our efforts and concentrate on mitigation efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emission and play our part. Such action must lead to win-win mitigation solutions aimed not only at reducing emissions, but also reducing cost and pollution”.

Adding that the Ministry stands to benefit significantly from this project, he said it is anticipated that the outcomes of the initiative will help to build capacity in a number of critical areas, especially those units that will have the responsibility to coordinate and drive all activities relating to climate change across government.

In her remarks, Mission Director, USAID, Denise Herbol said “you all are doing it right…getting the policy right first before seeking to invest resource and programming, to ensure that you do smart investment of those resources.”

Issues being explored during the two-day symposium include: low emission growth for development; analysis and investment for low emission growth; LED development strategy in the Jamaican context; requirements for low emission considerations in national planning; and the status and way forward for policy, programming, planning and financing for climate change.

Contact: Alphea Saunders

JIS Social