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CARICOM disappointed at US decision to quit Paris accord


CARICOM disappointed at US decision to quit Paris accord

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GEORGETOWN – The 15-member Caribbean Community (CARICOM) grouping says it is “deeply dismayed and disappointed” at the decision of the United States to withdraw from the Paris agreement on climate change.

“For us climate change is an existential threat.  As members of a community of Small-Island and Low-Lying Coastal Developing States (SIDS), the reality of climate change is making itself manifest to us, especially given that our region is the most prone to natural disasters globally,” CARICOM chairman and Guyana president David Granger said in a statement.

He said that the Paris Agreement on Climate Change was more than just another international agreement on another complex international issue.

“It reflects the acknowledgment and acceptance that climate change is a global issue requiring global solutions,” he said, adding that CARICOM “is therefore deeply dismayed and disappointed by the decision of the United States to withdraw from the Agreement”.

Last week, President Donald Trump announced the withdrawal of the United States from the agreement, saying he wants to “renegotiate” a fairer deal that would not disadvantage US businesses and workers.

“If we can get a deal, that’s great. If not, that’s fine,” he added.

In the statement, CARICOM said the need for global action to combat this phenomenon is past urgent.

“As one of the prime contributors to the emissions which continue to push global temperature rise to an untenable level, the leadership of the United States in efforts to curb the warming of the planet is an important factor.

“Abdication of that responsibility sends a negative signal particularly to those of us most vulnerable to the effects of climate change despite the fact that we do little or nothing to contribute to its causes.

“However, CARICOM is encouraged by the fact that the overwhelming majority of nations remains firmly committed to the Paris Agreement.  Our own commitment will never waiver. Our existence is at stake,” Granger said. (CMC)