Caribbean felt full brunt of climate change in 2017

Dominica hurricane

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados,  CMC – In 2017, the Caribbean felt the full brunt of climate change with a warning that current trends indicate that there will be no respite.

Within a two-week period, Hurricanes Irma and Maria brought home the reality of the impact of climate change as they churned their way across the Lesser Antilles destroying everything in their paths. Hurricane Harvey had in August set the stage for what was to come; with devastation in Houston, Texas, amounting to nearly US$200billion.

“The unprecedented nature of this climatic event highlights the unusual nature of weather patterns that continue to affect nations across the globe,” the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretary General Irwin LaRocque said in a message to United States President Donald Trump, as Harvey made landfall in the United States after whipping up strong winds and heavy rains in the Caribbean.

It took less than a month for his statement to bear fruit. Hurricanes Irma and Maria, two Category 5 storms left so many Caribbean islands devastated in September that the CARICOM Chairman and Grenada’s Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell said “there can be no question that for us in the Caribbean, climate change is an existential threat”. (more…)

“A true champion of Regional integration” – CARICOM SG on passing of Sir Dwight Venner

STATEMENT BY CARICOM SECRETARY-GENERAL AMBASSADOR IRWIN LAROCQUE ON THE PASSING OF SIR DWIGHT VENNER, FORMER GOVERNOR OF THE EASTERN CARIBBEAN CENTRAL BANK (ECCB)

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Sir Dwight Venner

  The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) mourns the passing of the former Governor of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) Sir Dwight Venner.

Sir Dwight was a true champion of regional integration.  During his more than two decades at the helm of the sub-regional Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB), he was an outstanding contributor to discourse on regional economics and finance and prospects for a unified Caribbean.  His focused leadership at the Central Bank has been credited for the growth and stability of the financial system in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS).  He also played a leading role in the establishment of the OECS Economic Union.

Sir Dwight has himself lived the regional integration experience. A Vincentian by birth, he served for a number of  years as Saint Lucia’s Director of Finance and Planning and before that as Lecturer in Economics at the Jamaica-based Mona Campus of the University of the West Indies. As the ECCB Governor he was based at its St. Kitts and Nevis headquarters. His award of Knight Commander (KBE) for service to the financial sector was recommended by the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines while he also received the Saint Lucia Cross for distinguished and outstanding service of national importance to Saint Lucia.

The Caribbean Community extends its deepest sympathies to his wife Linda, their children and other members of the Venner family as well as to the Government and people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Saint Lucia.

The Region has lost one of its outstanding sons. May his soul rest in peace.

An extraordinary legacy – St. Lucia PM praises retiring ECCB Governor

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Sir Dwight Venner

Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Economic Affairs, Planning and Social Security, Hon. Dr. Kenny D. Anthony has praised Sir Dwight’s stewardship of the ECCB, noting the “deep concern and anxiety” the veteran administrator always had for ordinary citizens.

In a letter to Sir Dwight, Dr. Anthony said, “On behalf of the Government and people of Saint Lucia and on my personal behalf, I thank you for the years of selfless and dedicated service that you have given to the Central Bank and the people of our region. There can be no question that you have departed from the bank leaving behind an extraordinary legacy. Few, if any, could match your passion and commitment to our region. You gave us not just administrative leadership but also intellectual leadership. I have always been impressed by your fierce protection of the integrity and independence of the bank. You led with vision and integrity.

Full story: OPM St. Lucia