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'We are the ones who will feel it' ... McCaulay on Trump's climate deal pullout

Published:Wednesday | May 31, 2017 | 12:00 AM
Diana McCaulay

Diana McCaulay, environment advocate, has urged the Government to ensure that proper mitigation initiatives are established to build the country's resilience against the decision of the United States to exit the Paris Climate Accord.

President Donald Trump acted on the promise he made while campaigning and subsequently, in a tweet, said that he would pull America from the climate agreement. He made the announcement yesterday.

The global deal is the result of years-long negotiations among countries to arrive at the goal to strengthen the global response to the threat of the climate change, pledging to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

McCaulay spoke to The Gleaner on Tuesday while Trump's decision was pending, noting that there were serious consequences for Jamaica.

"We may see things that we have already seen such as more intense rain storms, a lot of rain in a short period of time - which our systems can't handle - issues such as increased spread of mosquitoes. So there are great consequences for Jamaica, and we are not the cause of it. We are simply the ones who will feel it," she said.

As such, McCaulay urged policymakers to put the necessary measures in place, looking at infrastructure such as the country's two major airports and the agricultural sector, among other critical resources.

"We need to look at the most serious vulnerabilities. It might be the airport; it might be the major infrastructure; it might be, for example, types of crops we produce. Maybe we need to look at things that are more drought resistant. Rather than wait until the storm destroys the infrastructure, let us decide to put things in place," she said.