Environment Minister attends climate action conference in South Korea

The Honourable Dr. Joyelle Clarke, Minister of Environment and Climate Action in the Federal Government of St. Kitts and Nevis is currently in South Korea to attend the September 13-15 conference dubbed “Private Investment for Climate Conference 2022”.

The aim of the conference is to bring into perspective a sustainable plan intended to boost the momentum for climate action in the midst of increasing global, economic pressures and uncertainty where climate action is concerned.

In addressing the Conference of Ministers on September 13, Dr. Clarke said that the Green Climate Fund (GCF) Readiness Support can help promote the involvement of the private sector, as well as assist governments to establish long-term goals in order to implement innovative climate adaptation and mitigation solutions.

Discussion topics include “How can countries spark the involvement of the private sector in climate action” and “How can the Green Climate Fund Readiness Support help the governments to establish this”. In response, Dr Clarke said the private sector has to be encouraged to look beyond the finances and the short-term.

“Outside of the fact that you want to meet this reliance on fossil fuel, you also want to ensure that the private sector does not get away with the best of the sweetest part of the deal, but focus on how the private sector can make its money and invest in social development projects, invest in government projects and recognize that in doing so means, in 50 years you are going to have your company still in existence because it is making profits as opposed to a five (5) to 10-year profit margin,” said the Honourable Dr. Joyelle Clarke.

“So, there must be some specific tangibles not just for the government but for the private sector. Now encouraging them to look beyond will always be a matter of how many dollars you can look beyond because you are not going to go far into the future unless you carry your dollars with you. And that’s just the sad reality when it comes to private and public sector partnership,” the environment minister added.

The Honourable Dr Joyelle Clarke is accompanied by Auren Manners, Focal Point for Green Climate Fund (GCF), the world’s largest multilateral climate fund. He noted that “St Kitts and Nevis has completed three years of readiness projects in preparation for the next phase of project financing. The projects are focused on priority areas – water, energy and food security.”

The conference is timely and comes at a time when the Government is spearheading a project called “The St. Kitts and Nevis Climate Smart Agriculture Project.” The project addresses the linked challenges of food security and climate change. The Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (5Cs) which coordinates the Caribbean region’s response to climate change, is the executing entity.

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