Speech at the 70th General Assembly in New York, Oct. 1, 2015

Regional call at UN for action on climate change

A framework for climate change “cannot wait,” Grenada’s Foreign Minister said today, joining other leaders from Latin America and the Caribbean calling for urgent action in the United Nations General Assembly.

“The impacts of climate change are already being felt the world over,” said Clarice Modeste-Curwen, warning that without a successful legally binding agreement in Paris, “we will see climate change continue unabated.”

Meanwhile, the Attorney General and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belize Wilfred P. Erlington also raised the issue of climate change.

“The accelerated phenomenon of climate change giving rise to the inexorable melting of the glaciers, the rising and warming of the oceans and seas, the spawning of super typhoons, hurricanes, tornadoes and floods, droughts, desertification and the indiscriminate igniting of conflagrations of gigantic proportions, are, increasingly attributed to anthropogenic interference with the climate system,” he said.

“In its 70-year history, the United Nations has made notable inroads to combat climate change and to promote sustainable development,” he continued, but there is still work to be done.

“Notwithstanding a commitment to tackle climate change, our efforts have been less than ambitious, and achieving a successor global emissions reduction regime hangs in the balance, not the least because finance and technology are conspicuously wanting, Mr. Erlington continued.

“Worse yet, the failure of the world’s powers to agree to hold global average temperature increase to well below 1.5 degrees centigrade relative to pre-industrial levels will certainly condemn small island developing states and low lying coastal States.”