Fri | Feb 28, 2020

Earth Today| New appointments for Climate Change Advisory Board

Published:Thursday | February 21, 2019 | 12:06 AM

THE CLIMATE Change Advisory Board, with the mandate to advise the minister of economic growth and job creation (MEGJC) on climate change issues affecting Jamaica, was recently reconstituted.

The new board, as is customary, is comprised of representatives from academia, the public and private sectors, well as civil society, together with the head of the Climate Change Division of the MEGJC, Una-May Gordon.

In addition to Professor Dale Webber, principal of the University of the West Indies, Mona, and a respected marine scientist, who serves as chairman, board members include Professor Michael Taylor. A new addition to the board, Taylor is a celebrated climate scientist who worked on the much publicised Special Report of 1.5 degrees of global warming.

The report – produced by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change – takes stock of the impacts of global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty.

Among other things, the report paints a picture of a world that is in much better shape with global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius when compared to a world at two degrees of warming. It also recommends prompt, comprehensive and scaled-up adaptation and mitigation actions to stem the tide of the anticipated fallout from climate change impacts, including sea level rise and extreme weather events, including hurricanes, the likes of which were experienced in the Caribbean in 2017.

The new board also has a youth representative in the person of Sean Davis, a CARICOM youth ambassador. Other members include:

- Dr Jacquiline Bisasor McKenzie, Ministry of Health, who is a new addition

- Dr Livingston White, Caribbean School of Media and Communication;

- Energy consultant David Barrett;

- Dr Susan Otuokon, Jamaica Conservation and Development Trust; and

- Peter Knight, the National Environment and Planning Agency.

The board had their first meeting in December, when members “had an opportunity to hear the major decisions coming out of the COP (Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) and an indication of activities going into the next year”, a source told The Gleaner.