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COP26, The Caribbean Cries Out For Global Action #553715
11/02/21 04:45 AM
11/02/21 04:45 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
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Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

All this week, the world's attention will be trained on Glasgow, Scotland for COP 26, the 26th Conference of Parties on climate Change.

The world's leaders meet as the planet's citizens are facing an existential emergency. To put it within the local context, climate change threatens to drive up sea levels making low lying areas like Belize City uninhabitable, and cause sea temperatures to rise - causing coral bleaching and eventually killing off vast swathes of Belize's precious barrier reef. Add to all this more extreme storms and floods - and you will know that Belize, and the rest of the world is in trouble. And the only way to mitigate it is to massively reduce carbon emissions of all nations,

So, COP 26 is seen as an important tipping point, "A minute to midnight" as one leader put it - the last chance to solidify the resolve to take climate action and address what has become humanity's crisis. As we told you, Belize has a delegation of almost 30 representatives, and our Cherisse Halsall is also in Glasgow to bring you extensive coverage of this important conference.

At today's opening event, which lasted for 5 hours, various world leaders, including Belize's Prime Minister, delivered remarks. We start our coverage tonight on an excerpt of the presentation made by Sir David Attenborough, the People's Advocate for COP 26. Here's how he placed this global crisis into historical context:

Sir David Attenborough - COP 26 People's Advocate
"For much of humanity's ancient history that number bounced wildly between 180-300 and so too did global temperatures. But just over 10,000 years ago that number suddenly stabilize and with it, earth's climate. We found ourselves in an unusually benign period with predictable seasons and reliable weather. For the first time civilization was possible and we wasted no time in taking advantage of that. Everything we've achieved in the last 10,000 years was enabled by the stability during this time. The global temperature has not waivered over this period by more than plus or minus one-degree Celsius, until now. Burning of fossil fuels or destruction of nature, our approach to industry construction and learning are releasing carbon into the atmosphere at an unprecedented paste and scale. We are already in trouble. The stability we all depend on is breaking. This story is one of equality as well as instability. Today, those whose done the least to cause this problem are being the hardest hit. Ultimately all of us will feel the impact, some of which are now unavoidable. We know how to stop the number rising and put it in reverse. We must have carbon emissions halt in this decade. We must recapture billion of tons of carbon from the air. We must fix our sights on keeping one and a half degrees within reach. In my life time I witnessed a terrible decline. In yours, you could and should with this wonderful recovery, that desperate hope ladies and gentlemen, is why the world is looking to you."

We turn now to some of the fiery comments made by Mia Mottley, the Prime Minister of Barbados. Here's what she had to say on behalf of the citizens of Caribbean nations and the Small Island Developing States who know all too well about the devastation that global warming has already caused:

Hon. Mia Amor Mottley - Prime Minister of Barbados
"We come to Glasgow with global ambition to save our people and to save our planet, but we now find 3 gaps on mitigation, climate pledges, or NDCs. Without more we will leave the world on a pathway to 2,7 degrees and with more we are still likely to get to 2 degrees. These commitments made by some are based on technology yet to be developed and this is at best reckless and at worst dangerous. On finance, we are 20 billion dollars short of the 100 billion and this commitment even then might only be met in 2023. On adaptation, adaptation finance remains only at 25%, not the 50/50 split that was promised nor needed given the warming that is already taken place on this earth. Climate finance to frontline to small islands developing states declined by 25% in 2019. Failure to provide the critical finance and that of loss and damage is measured my friends in lives and livelihoods in our communities. This is immoral and it is unjust. If Glasgow is to deliver on the promises on Paris, it must close these 3 gaps, so I ask to you what must we say to our people living on the frontline in the Caribbean, in Africa, in Latin America, in the Pacific - when both ambition and regrettably some of the needed faces at Glasgow are not present. What excuse should we give to the failure? In the words of that Caribbean icon Eddy Grant "will they mourned us on the frontline". Code red, code red to the G7 countries. Code red to the G20. Earth to COP, that's what it said. For those who have eyes to see. For those who have ears to listen."

Later on, in the opening event of COP 26, Prime Minister John Briceno was delivered his address. He focussed on that beloved Barrier Reef, which is under attack from coral bleaching, caused by global warming:

Hon. John Briceno - Prime Minister of Belize
"I'm here as a Belizean and as a global citizen to call for solidarity. As a member of AOSIS, Belize is here to demand urgent action to combat climate change."

"Belize is the proud custodian of the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System, the second-largest reef system in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. But here is the sad reality. The reef is under siege."

"The reef is dying and may be beyond the point of full restoration. Its loss will be irreversible. For Belize, the Barrier Reef is more than a global beauty; it also underpins our culture and our tourism industry which contributes approximately 40 percent to our gross domestic product. Without the reefs, Belize's economy could crumble. Our people's lives will be forever changed."

"Excellencies, the threat to our Barrier Reef is a direct result of human-induced climate change."

"Mister President, Belize is proud of our record on conservation. But all will be lost, if the countries of the G20 obfuscate, and abdicate their responsibilities to act. With right on our side, we demand climate justice. We demand immediate action! Ambitious action to save our planet."

Our coverage of COP 26 will continue for the duration of the two week conference.

Channel 7


PM Briceño Demands “Climate Justice” at COP26

Prime Minister John Briceño was among the first-day speakers at the Climate Change Conference of Parties, or COP26, in Glasglow, Scotland. As expected, the Prime Minister highlighted the impact of climate change on Belize, particularly in terms of the Barrier Reef and the high cost of extreme weather events to our economy. He called for “climate justice” and called out G20 countries for their continuing support of fossil fuels, saying Belize is doing “more than its fair share” to try and stop global warming. He also emphasized the need for increased financing for small island developing states for adaptation measures. Here are some excerpts from the address he gave today.

Prime Minister John Briceño

“Belize is the proud custodian of the Belize Barrier Reef system, the second largest barrier reef system in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. But here is the sad reality: coral bleaching, distress doubled from the period 1985 to 2014 to severe level 3 between 2014 to 2017. The Reef is dying. And may be beyond the point of full restoration. For Belize, the Belize Barrier Reef is more than a global beauty. It also underpins our culture and our tourism industry which contributes approximately 40 percent to our domestic product, gross domestic product. Without the reef, Belize’s economy could crumble. Our people’s lives will be forever changed. Excellencies, the threat to our barrier reef is a direct result of human induced climate change. That is an undeniable fact. I am pleased to announce that Belize just entered a $360 million dollar debt for marine conservation transaction. The largest Blue Bond transaction ever. And established a permanent $100 US million marine conservation trust fund. We will increase our marine protected biodiversity zones by 30 percent by 2026, four years ahead of our target, and we will place all remaining public lands in the Belize barrier reef reserve system under protection. Belize is proud of our record on conservation, but all will be lost if the countries of the G20 obfuscate and abdicate their responsibilities to act. With right on our side, we demand climate justice. We demand immediate action, ambitious action to save our planet. Developed countries must not only deliver, but increase their commitments on climate finance. One hundred billion US dollars per year can only now serve as the baseline. Funding for adaptation must be dramatically increased, at a minimum developed countries need to more than double public finance adaptation. We need to move from carbon trading towards carbon emission reduction mechanisms, with rules that apply to everyone.”

According to the PM’s office, while in Glasgow, the Belize delegation will be meeting with the heads of state of Norway, Finland, Canada, Switzerland, and the Dominican Republic and holding discussions with key agencies such as the Green Climate Fund, the United Nations Environment Program and the Adaptation Fund. Duane Moody is in Glasgow and will be giving you highlight from the scene in the coming days.

Channel 5


Re: COP26, The Caribbean Cries Out For Global Action [Re: Marty] #553737
11/03/21 04:47 AM
11/03/21 04:47 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 82,931
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

Belize’s Blue Bond Making Waves At COP 26

Tonight, the world leaders summit is winding down in Glasgow Scotland as negotiations for COP26 truly kick-off.

British Prime Minister and host Boris Johnson set the tone when he told the conference and the world that we were quote, "One minute away from midnight on the Doomsday clock." It's a dire warning and one that's prompting negotiators to apply more pressure in what are their best efforts to save the human race from the climate crisis.

Cherisse Halsall comes to us from Scotland with news of CARICOM's participation at COP26.

She tells us why Belize is garnering a lot of attention with the Blue Bond, which is a model finance for nature-based solution to the climate crisis:

It was 7 News's first day at COP26 this morning and the line to get into the conference was no joke.

But, that's because COP26 is decisive meeting on climate change, where Small Island Developing States, the ones most vulnerable to the effects of climate change, are demanding action.

John Briceno, Prime Minister of Belize
"It gets heard by attending these meetings and by being vocal and by pointing out what Belize is doing, showing that Belize is doing its part and even more so that we're prepared to do even more."

CHERISSE
"And that's what we have here, we have a delegation that's ready that's here on the ground and that's going to be making all of the connections we need."

Case in point, this moment when a British journalist quoted Prime Minister Briceno's words to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Reporter
"Prime Minister, I don't know if the Prime Minister of Belize would share your cautious optimism, I spoke to him today and he said developed countries are not doing enough. he said that the west got rich on lavish lifestyles and that now it was telling developing countries they couldn't do that. He said is that is your message then they need much more money and much more action. So let me ask, do you understand the anger of the prime minister of Belize and also you are not going to get a deal that's good enough on coal, are you?"

Boris Johnson, UK Prime Minister
"I think you are absolutely right to highlight the feelings of people in Belize that are in vulnerable states around the world that are on the frontline the fight against climate change and it's been very humbling to sit here and to listen over the last weeks, months."

It's the kind of moment that pushed Belize's PM into the rarefied orbit of firebrand Barbadian Prime Minister Mia Mottley. This morning she told the press that large carbon emitting countries still aren't accepting their culpability for climate change.

MIa Amor Mottley, Prime Minister, Barbados
"I think people are getting there, the problem is those who need to make the decisions are kicking the can down the road and they believe that they can because they're not seeing, they see themselves and for them they don't reach that period of peril probably for another 12 fifteen years."

"Part of the difficulty is that the new emitters, is that the tradition emitters have the largest stock, but whether it's the largest stock or the smallest stock, we are literally like the ground elephants fight we get trampled and that's exactly what's happening now."

But rather than just getting trampled, Belize went into this COP resilient, only the second example of how low-income countries can restructure debt through well-thought-out conservation efforts.

Jen, TNC
"What we're seeing in terms of Belize and other countries is a model where we can, as Prime Minister Briceno said take some of that debt burden and transition it into a conservation, so we've been working very hard with many partners for the last 18 months or so and there will be a very big announcement on Friday about this which is to say this is the second of what we are calling the Blue Bond's transactions, the first was five years ago in the Seychelles where the Nature Conservancy and partners very closely with the government of the Seychelles to create a marine protected area that is twice the size of the UK. Huge area, 30% of that country's exclusive economic zone and in exchange they were able to reduce their debt burden, really great outcome and we are looking to do this in many other places and as you can imagine given the highly indebted nature of so many countries right now, especially amazing biodiversity and have committed to agenda, they are looking around and saying we want to do this, but how do we pay for it, so our job in the donor community and the NGO community is to be there to provide the support that we can for them to reach their goals, because it is amazing. All of these proclamations that were made today, the billions of dollars, at the end of the day if the government does not have the budget, if the communities don't have the incentive don't have the budget that they need to conserve, it's all platitudes."

Platitudes that could be made by world leaders like Joe Biden, Justin Trudeau and even India's Narendra Mohdi but they weren't flying at COP26.

John Briceno, Prime Minister of Belize
"We have to fight if we sit on the side, they are going to forget about us they're going to roll over us. The message that I gave, I gave a message loud and clear that we are doing our part, that the barrier reef, that we can do everything that we can, but if the developed countries don't do their part, there is nothing we can do to protect this world heritage site, that mother earth is dying and that if we don't do something collectively then we are wasting our time. I believe that we sent out a very strong message, not a diplomatic message, but a very in your face message to the developed world."

And in one of COP 26's first disappointments, President Nehandra Modi has pledged that his country India, a newer but major emitter, will reach Net 0 by 2070, twenty years after the globally desired date.

Channel 7


PM Briceño’s Comments at COP26 Get Response From British PM

News Five’s Duane Moody is out in Glasgow, Scotland where the United Nations Conference of the Parties is underway. Today, the World Leaders Summit concluded where country leaders from small island developing states as well as those from larger countries, referred to as the G20. The call is for action to be taken by those countries that have not made good on their commitments in the Paris Agreement signed years ago. Prime Minister John Briceño attended and did not mince words. In fact, his comments caught the attention of the British press as a reporter asked Prime Minister Boris Johnson about the comments made by the Prime Minister from Belize. Here’s Duane Moody’s report.

Duane Moody, Reporting

Thousands have converged here in Glasgow, Scotland in the UK, where climate change is the theme for the discussion. World leaders for the past two days have been meeting to address the management of climate change. Be that, mitigation, adaptation, and even access to climate finances. Belize’s very own Prime Minister John Briceño has been attending these meetings and has had a strong message for these countries that have been emitting large volumes of greenhouse gases.

Prime Minister John Briceño

“We are doing our part and prepared to do even more, but we are all in this together. We are all in this boat together. It is not a matter of we can do our part and then we can forget about the rest. So it’s a matter now of putting more pressure on the developed countries to be able to reduce their emissions and the actions that they take to control in rise of temperature on earth.”

Accessing climate finance is another issue. It was agreed to by these larger countries that they would provide one hundred billion dollars yearly to a fund to assist developing countries that are experiencing the impacts of climate change. According to PM Briceño, annually, the fund is forty billion dollars short. He says that countries like Belize need to be able to access these funds for adaptation and capacity building.

Prime Minister John Briceño

“The hundred billion plus per year, that’s supposed to be set aside for financing. We hope, as I said in my speech yesterday, that that should no longer be the goal. That is supposed to be the bench mark that we are supposed to be able to raise more than a hundred billion dollars because the country, the world needs more than a hundred billion dollars for conservation. If you look at what the developed countries have done, they spent trillions of dollars to access energy, oil, coal, and so forth. But yet, not prepared to put the billions of dollars that is needed to be able to protect their very own countries.”

The realities on the ground in Belize are felt by farmers where crop cycles have been disrupted by changes in weather patterns, experienced by coastline communities where lands are being washed away. It is frustrating and PM Briceño’s message was heard.

Prime Minister John Briceño

“Countries like Belize, we have been doing our part. We are protecting our reserves, our land, our waters. But yet, the bigger countries that have developed themselves and living a lavish lifestyle are, in effect, telling us that we can’t  do what they have done before because we have to protect mother earth. Because of the changes in temperature, many of our islands are going to disappear. Some of them have already disappeared. We had a bird sanctuary that has completely disappeared. And the hurricanes are becoming more intense, and we could be doing decades of good work, and with one hurricane it would be destroyed. They need to do more! They need to do more and give us the funding. Also, they have to their part in reducing their emissions, so that we can reduce the temperatures on planet earth. I hope that that talk can be translated into action.”

Boris Johnson, Prime Minister, United Kingdom

“You are right to highlight the issue of people in Belize have been in vulnerable states around the world who are in the frontline that sitting here in line in the fight against climate change. And it’s been very humbling to sit here and to listen over the past week, months, to colleagues Mia Mottley and Bobby, you heard at the UN General Assembly hear her say the same thing. Why should they suffer this immediate impact, this loss and damage because of the emissions that we in our country began to produce her two hundred and fifty years ago.”

PM Briceño says nevertheless, Belize continues to prepare.

Prime Minister John Briceño

“It’s always difficult, but we have to prepare, we have to do our part, we have to have our own technical expert, the expertise. For example, here we are with Five Seas, the Caribbean Climate Change office is also there to help us so that we can have access to funding. Also the endue community in Belize, both the Ministry of Blue Economy, and the Ministry of Sustainable Development, along with the Ministry of Economic Development join together to access funding.”

Channel 5


Re: COP26, The Caribbean Cries Out For Global Action [Re: Marty] #553835
11/09/21 05:10 AM
11/09/21 05:10 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 82,931
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

Review of Week 1 at COP26 & Expectations for Week 2
Duane Moody – Report from COP26 in Scotland

Re: COP26, The Caribbean Cries Out For Global Action [Re: Marty] #553920
11/12/21 11:32 AM
11/12/21 11:32 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 82,931
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP


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