Caribbean can only ‘build back better’ with international support, urgent climate action – UN, CARICOM Chiefs and Heads of Government

uinconference-banner

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

New York, 21 November 2017 – In view of the urgent needs of Caribbean islands affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, the “CARICOM-UN High-level Pledging Conference: Building a more Climate-Resilient Community ” mobilised a broad partnership to support reconstruction efforts, including through over US$1.3 billion in pledges and over $1 billion in loans and debt relief.

Support derived from nearly 400 high-level representatives from governments, multilateral and civil society organizations and the private sector gathered at UN headquarters today with the Secretaries-General of the United Nations and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to help countries to “build back better” as the first climate-resilient countries in the world

Recovery costs surpass $5billion, according to the latest needs estimates. In some cases the impact is 3.5 times countries’ Gross Domestic Product (GDP), for example in the British Virgin Islands.The principal economic sectors of tourism and agriculture have been significantly affected, according to assessments made public during the conference, organized by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) with support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) working with sister UN agencies.

See more stories here

See more photos here (more…)

CARICOM-UN High Level Pledging Conference begins shortly

uinconference-banner


International Development Partners, including countries, agencies, NGOs, prominent personalities, private sector entities and Foundations, are meeting at the United Nations Headquarters today for the CARICOM-UN High Level Conference. They will be joined at the day-long session by CARICOM Heads of Government and the Secretaries-General of CARICOM and the United Nations.

The Conference is aimed at rebuilding the CARICOM Member States that were devastated by the recent hurricanes. The goal is to rebuild as the first climate-resilient countries in the world and to help the wider CARICOM Region improve its resilience, given its inherent vulnerability as a Community of SIDS – Small Island and Low-lying Coastal Developing States.

A technical consultation was held yesterday in New York ahead of the Conference today.

The Conference, which begins at 10:00 am will be live-streamed here on CARICOM Today, on our Facebook Page, as well as on UN Web TV.

See more information also here 

 

Technical Consultation begins ahead of CARICOM-UN High Level Pledging Conference

uinconference-banner

The Technical Consultations ahead of the CARICOM-UN High Level Pledging Conference began this morning at the United Nations (UN) Headquarters, New York. CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator, Achim Steiner made opening remarks.

The High Level Pledging Forum will be held 21 November, also at the UN and is aimed at rebuilding the devastated Members as the first climate resilient countries in the world and at helping the wider CARICOM Region improve its resilience given its inherent vulnerability as a Community of SIDS – Small Island and Low-lying Coastal Developing States .


The technical sessions are aimed at providing an overview of the impact of Hurricanes Irma and Maria on the Caribbean; presenting the country recovery needs, priorities and recovery strategy; and giving partners an opportunity for technical level enquiries and inputs.

The head of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) will provide an overview presentation. This will be followed by presentations by Senior Government representatives of the affected countries and territories. Perspectives will be provided by partners, including those who conducted post disaster assessments.

How to build back better after a hurricane with the next one a few months away

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

OP-ED By Irwin LaRocque and Achim Steiner*

CARICOM SG, Irwin LaRocque
Ambassador Irwin LaRocque
Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator
Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator

 Imagine relocating the entire population of your country in the face of a colossal hurricane and two months later still not being able to get back home. Now imagine spending several nights in a shelter and taking a stroll the next morning only to find what you used to call community, city or country reduced to an apocalyptic scene.

This is no fiction. Irma and Maria, two back-to-back category 5 hurricanes, the most powerful ever recorded in the Atlantic, swept across the Caribbean in September, cutting a swathe of destruction, taking lives, devastating infrastructure and severely damaging the economies of small climate-vulnerable countries.

Entire islands were decimated, like Barbuda, the smaller of the two-island state of Antigua and Barbuda, and Dominica, both Members of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). Anguilla and the British Virgin Islands were also devastated while The Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands were severely affected. Haiti and St Kitts and Nevis also suffered damage. All of the islands are Members or Associate Members of CARICOM.

The island of St Marten, divided between Sint Maarten, a constituent country of the Kingdom of Netherlands and St Martin, a dependency of France as well as Cuba and the Dominican Republic were impacted, in addition to Puerto Rico and Florida, in the United States. (more…)