#Bahamas, September 21, 2017 – Nassau – Climate Change is now one of the most fundamental development challenges facing countries of the African, Caribbean and the Pacific (ACP) grouping, Prime Minister, Dr. the Hon. Hubert A. Minnis said Wednesday.
Addressing the Opening Session of the 5th Meeting of ACP (Africa, Caribbean and Pacific) Ministers In Charge of Fisheries and Aquaculture at Melia Nassau Beach resort, Prime Minister Minnis said various climate models suggest damage from natural disasters have increased sharply and that: “such damage is likely to worsen, especially from flooding.”
“The National Wildlife Federation in the United States notes that the latest science connecting hurricanes and global warming suggests more is yet to come,” Prime Minister Minnis said.
“Tropical Storms are likely to bring higher wind speeds, more precipitation and bigger storm surge in the coming decades.”
Prime Minister Minnis observed Climate Change also poses risks for sustainable development and tourism, in addition to sustainable fisheries.
“In meeting these risks, we must rise to the challenge with new ideas for fisheries and aquaculture.
“Public and private sector investments are required if the aquaculture sector is to develop in a viable manner in the Caribbean. The Caribbean Community must do its part to boost aquaculture and sustainable fisheries throughout our region,” Prime Minister Minnis added.
The Prime Minister announced that the Government of The Bahamas will promote investments in aquaculture, mariculture and modern sea farming strategies.
It will undertake a study of the country’s marine resources with a view to creating opportunities for the artificial propagation and enhancement of local fish stocks, addressing growing demands for fish and aquaculture products regionally and globally, and the ‘steep rise’ in importation of fish and fisheries products over the last decade.
Prime Minister Minnis said there is no denying the impact Climate Change is having on the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season. There have already been 13 named storms just three-and-one-half months into the season, with two-and-one-half months left to go. (The Hurricane Season lasts June 1 through November 30.)
Already, there have been three Super-Storm Hurricanes (Harvey, Irma, Maria) that have left an estimated hundreds of billions of dollars worth of devastation and destruction across the region and parts of the United States of America.
Maria, the latest of the three Super Storms, has wreaked major havoc in Dominica and Puerto Rico.
“Like typhoons and monsoons (in Asia), these Super Storms leave many communities and countries in the Caribbean particularly vulnerable,” Prime Minister Minnis said.
“This includes Small-Island Developing States (SIDS) and low-lying areas such as The Bahamas and a number of small-island Pacific States here today. Climate Change is now one of the most fundamental development challenges for countries in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific,” Prime Minister Minnis remarked.
By: Matt Maura
Photos/Yontalay Bowe, OPM Media Services
Prime Minister Minnis addresses the 5th Meeting of ACP Ministers in charge of Fisheries and Aquaculture, September 20, at Melia Nassau Beach resort.
Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers from Africa, the Caribbean, and Pacific countries.
Group Photo at Melia on Wednesday.
Prime Minister Minnis (second left) and Bahamas Minister of Agriculture and Marine Resources Renward Wells (third left) chat with a delegate of the 5th Meeting of ACP Ministers in charge of Fisheries and Aquaculture, September 20, at Melia Nassau Beach resort. Also pictured is Parliamentary Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister for Information and Communication Pakesia Parker-Edgecombe.