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Basseterre, St. Kitts, October 22, 2019 (SKNIS): Regional Climate Change Lead Negotiators of the Alliance of Small Island Developing States (AOSIS) convened a coordination meeting at the St. Kitts Marriott Resort from October 15 -16, 2019. The purpose was to reflect on AOSIS’s priorities going into the Climate Change Conference of Parties 25 (COP25) that is scheduled to take place from December 02-13, 2019 in Santiago, Chile.

The meeting was also geared towards strengthening the group’s position in specific areas, and strategizing in order to achieve the group’s objectives for COP 25 and beyond. Over 30 participants from the Caribbean Region, including Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Bahamas, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Lucia, Suriname and Trinidad & Tobago, were in attendance.

Immediately following the coordination meeting was the CARICOM Technical Meeting which took place on October 17. The Technical session was chaired by Ms. Cheryl Jeffers, Conservation Officer in the Department of Environment. She noted that the meetings were “significantly important.”

“Although St. Kitts and Nevis is not a major contributor of greenhouse gases, we are at the frontline of climate change impacts. It is therefore necessary for us to be involved in the discussions to ensure that the urgent call to reduce greenhouse emissions remains at the centre of the negotiations,” said Ms. Jeffers.

The meetings were ably supported by the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre and the CARICOM Secretariat, in collaboration with Climate Analytics and Charles & Associates, which both have been providing real-time technical support to the region at negotiations and intersessional meetings for over the past eight years.

Ms. Jeffers said COP25 will be another important session in the international climate change negotiations. Strong engagement by CARICOM countries at COP25 will be critical, given the importance of building momentum on climate action and finalizing elements of the Paris Agreement Work Programme that were not completed at COP24 in Katowice, Poland. 

Based upon discussions and presentations, participants were reminded during last week’s coordination meeting that every fraction of a degree of additional warming matters, and that a drastic step-change is needed in the short-and medium-term on climate change action at a global level.

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