Call for making climate change “center stage”

Guiste believes climate change affects everything
Guiste believes climate change affects everything

A plea has been made for climate change to be placed on the center stage and not viewed as a ‘side event.’

Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Environment, Natural Resources, Physical Planning and Fisheries, Harold Guiste, made the call at the national consultation on global framework for climate services in Dominica earlier this week.

“Climate change cannot be an offshoot, it cannot be a side event,” Guiste said. “It has to be center stage central to our social and economic development in this country.”

He said climate change impacts everything.

“It impacts tourism, it impacts land use, agriculture, health, it impacts everything,” he pointed out.

The acting permanent secretary mentioned further that Dominica has to “some extent” set the national framework for climate change and its related impacts and effects.

“The low carbon climate resilience strategy which has been developed for Dominica sets the stage for adaptation and mitigation measures for all sectors of development of our country,” he pointed out, adding that the country has presented a design for main streaming climate change into the social and economic development planning of Dominica.

Meantime, he is laying blame at the feet of climate change for many adverse impacts on health, fishing and other sectors.

“When the natural environment is unhealthy, so are we,” he said. “We have already begun to experience the effects of climate change on health and I believe chikungunya is one of those. I believe the Ebola Virus is another one.”

He is of the view that in recent times there has been an upsurge in pests and diseases affecting the agriculture.

“I have never seen that in my entire life, endemic Crapaud, born here, bred here, raised here, indigenous to this country, it has a disease and I believe the culprit is climate change,” Guiste said.

He therefore called on all sectors to join in the effort to counter the effect of climate change.

Also addressing the consultation, Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Advisor on Sustainable Development and Environmental Health, Sally Edwards, commended Dominica on numerous initiatives undertaken to combat climate change.

“I congratulate Dominica on the numerous initiatives undertaken over the last decade to respond to climate change threat,” she said. “However the health sector has, until now, lagged a little behind the other sectors in developing the necessary capacity to respond to the effects of climate change.”

Edwards also noted that understanding the relationship between climate and health is fundamental to taking proactive action against health risks.

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  1. Anonymous
    August 16, 2014

    In this era of Global Climate Change we continue to promote Dominica as the Nature Isle of 365 Rivers. Ten years ago the theme for World Rivers Day, hosted by WEF was: “Where have all our Rivers gone?”
    Today, as we prepare to join over 60 other countries to observe another World Rivers Day, on the last Sunday of September (28), as designated by the United Nations, and dubbed “Jounen Layvye Entewnasyonnal”, by the World Rivers Day Committee, under the theme: “Show us your River(s) and we will tell you who YOU are!” We need to consider the impact of climate change on our environment and our Rivers and waterways as indicated in the above statement by Mr. Harold Guiste, the Acting PS in the Ministry of Agriculture, Environment, Natural Resources, Physical planning and Fisheries. The plea of Sally Edwards of (PAHO) should also be given due consideration by all concerned Dominicans.
    River Advocate,
    Fr. Franklyn

  2. Emile Zapatos
    August 16, 2014

    We are in a position to play an international leading role in conservation and environment studies, and the passing of legislation on climate change in a view to protect the nature island, and planet Earth .
    I hope Mr. Guiste will be motivating some strong action to back up his words. And he is not just TALKING, but will be showing and doing

  3. Emile Zapatos
    August 16, 2014

    Climate change affect every sector of life, and the main area is health by pollutants in our environment that we ingest from our food , air and water. We have to stop eating imported ‘deaders’ and go local and organic. Most of our environment problems are imported.
    Trees control carbon and produce clean air, so we must plant trees in urban areas and ban clear cutting. We must replace the consumption of fossil fuels with electricity .
    We should also introduce studies of Conservation and Environmental Science in our schools from first grade to college. There are all kinds of international assistance available for sustainable development that we just have to ask. You just have to do an internet search.

  4. mindful
    August 16, 2014

    continue the initiative Mr,Guiste
    as long as your ministry takes the lead, i believe others will follow

  5. infowars
    August 15, 2014

    Thousands of scientists have voiced their concern to the IPCC regarding their false and misleading data on the lie called ‘climate change’.

    Australia recognized this lie and repealed laws implementing draconian penalties upon their society and development.

    The IPCC climate change policies are tied into the UN’s Agenda 21 Sustainable Development, that calls for global tax on all peoples that essentially stifles and penalizes your development in order to sustain others. You are to be sacrificed, in short.

    The planet is obviously carbon based and because of the continued and unabated cutting down of tree’s, carbon levels have risen. Logic and common sense alone tells you that if you stop cutting down tree’s and plant more tree’s, carbon levels will naturally decrease and be replaced with oxygen from the tree’s that convert carbon into oxygen for those of you that don’t know.

    Just think a generation after implementing climate change policies can be wiped out entirely in a matter of hours with the eruption of a single Volcano. What sense does it then make to believe a lie unless you have been paid handsomely to.

    Don’t fall for it. Protect and preserve your future development for your children and your country. Tell the UN and Al Gore go to hell and climate change that first.

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