PRESS RELEASE:- Minister for Education, Innovation, Gender Relations and Sustainable Development, Hon. Dr. Gale Rigobert continues to show support for combatting climate change as she participates in the annual meeting on climate change entitled “Parliamentary Action to Stop Climate Change” hosted by ParlAmericas and Latin American and Caribbean Parliament which runs from August 3rd to 5th, 2016 in Panama City, Panama.

Dr. Rigobert was invited to speak on “Best legislative practices: measures for climate change mitigation and adaptation”. In her presentation, Dr. Rigobert focused on Saint Lucia’s leadership in the region and the role that Saint Lucia played in guiding the negotiations for COP21 on behalf of CARICOM. Dr. Rigobert underscored some of the most pressing concerns for the region which were eventually embedded in the final agreement, such as

1. The meaningful inclusion of a 1.5 degree temperature goal.

2. The inclusion of a pathway or timeline for achieving the global temperature goal.

3. Consideration of the special circumstances of Small Island Developing States, given their vulnerabilities and capacity limitations

Importantly, Dr. Rigobert highlighted the challenges that continue to haunt small island developing states such as Saint Lucia. Dr. Rigobert remarked “Broadly speaking, countries like Saint Lucia continue to face challenges with capacity, access to adequate climate financing and full public acceptance of climate responsibility. Small size has tended to make countries like ours unattractive to potential investors in renewable energy technologies.”

Dr. Rigobert continued to advocate that at the domestic level, there is need to: Strengthen the policy, legislative and fiscal framework to promote positive climate action; establish national mechanisms to access climate finance; improve public awareness, education, climate mainstreaming and capacity-building; and seek to build regional alliance that may assist in alleviating the problems associated with economies of scale.