Climate Resilience

STRATEGIC PROGRAMMES

Climate Resilience

 

 

CARICOM Member States have committed to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to guide their continued progress. SDG 13 calls on all nations to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts. This is an especially critical goal for the Caribbean, given:

  • the extreme exposure of the Caribbean to climate hazards (particularly storms, sea level rise, terrestrial and marine temperature increases, and droughts);
  • the dependence of Caribbean economies on environmental services that are prone to climate hazard disruption, particularly in the agriculture and tourism sectors;
  • the economic fragility of the small island states of the Caribbean; and
  • the traumatic recent experiences of dislocation in wake of hurricane disasters experienced by Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, the Commonwealth of Dominica, Haiti, and other places.

Given these realities, Caribbean nations have been integrating climate change measures into national policies, strategies and planning, with the goal of strengthening resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters in all countries. Despite the miniscule carbon footprint of most Caribbean countries, there have been concrete steps towards emissions reduction as well. Given the renewable energy resources in the region and the over-reliance to date on aging and expensive operation of fossil fuel generators, it is likely that this sustainable energy transition can generate significant economic benefits. Adaptation and mitigation goals can be met in mutually reinforcing ways.

Focusing on the energy sector, the CCREEE has been working with Member States to build resilience in the electricity sector through the development of Integrated Resource and Resilience Plans (IRRPs). This planning approach iterates on the traditional integrated resource planning process that electricity sector utilities regularly undergo by integrating analyses of climate vulnerability. This process will help to raise the human and institutional capacity for systems modelling and planning in governments and utilities, which will enable them to reduce the impact of climate events on electricity systems at the national level. The IRRP process would also output a pipeline of necessary investments, the realisation of which would be supported by CCREEE’s Project Preparation Facility (PPF). The human capacity development that must undergird all resilience building will be supported by CCREEE’s CARICOM Energy Knowledge Hub (CEKH).