Lead Editor - Newsgathering
Amid crippling heat gripping the Caribbean, Climate Analytics Caribbean has raised concerns that there is limited data and research regarding the costs associated with loss and damage from heat stress and heatwaves across the region.
The non-profit organisation pointed to elevated temperatures, humidity, and more frequent heatwaves, endangering vulnerable communities and heightening the risk of depleted agricultural yield, drought, coral bleaching, and more detrimental impacts to our economies and ecosystems.
In a bid to gather data on the impacts a changing climate is having on the Caribbean, Climate Analytics Caribbean has launched its first Caribbean Loss and Damage dialogue and research project, IsLanD Advancement.
“Loss and damage is a major topic internationally, and it is imperative that Caribbean voices are at the centre of the discussion to ensure decisions are appropriate and beneficial for our countries which are on the front lines of climate change,” said Rueanna Haynes, Director, Climate Analytics Caribbean. “There is also an urgent need for a research agenda on loss and damage in the Caribbean to enable science-based policy and decision making on loss and damage in the region.”
On the back of COP27, small island developing states will lead the call in Dubai this year for world leaders to operationalise a Loss and Damage Fund to assist communities which are most vulnerable to climate change impacts.
The project aims to benefit the region by conducting extensive research and enhanced data collection and analysis on the extent of islands’ losses and damages, and identification of existing response gaps. "This could potentially improve our countries’ access to loss and damage finance," a statement on Wednesday said.
The IsLanD Advancement project will be carried out in 14 CARICOM states: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago.
It includes three components:
1) Caribbean Research Agenda on Loss and Damage.
2) Caribbean Dialogue on Loss and Damage, which will bring together government, civil society, academia, NGOs and the private sector to share relevant information and knowledge and discuss experiences with loss and damage at the local, community and national levels as well as options to address loss and damage in the Caribbean.
3) Education and Public Engagement on loss and damage.
IsLanD Advancement, which is being funded by the Open Society Foundations with a budget of USD 300,000, will run for two years until June 2025.