Remarks - Uncut Conversations on Climate Change May 2022

Posted May 5, 2022

UNDP Resident Representative Denise E Antonio addressing the 2022 edition of UnCut Conversations from the Climate Change Division

UNDP Resident Representative, Denise E Antonio

Uncut Conversations on Climate Change, Implementing the Paris Agreement (Progress, Process, Proof, People & Partnerships)

Terra Nova Hotel, Thursday 5 May 2022, 9 am

Acknowledgement & Salutations

  • Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Senator the Hon Matthew Samuda
  • IDB Jamaica Representative A.I., Mr Lorenzo Escondeur
  • Director General of the Ministry of Economic Growth & Job Creation, Dr Sharon Crooks
  •  Principal Director, Climate Change Division in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Ms Una May Gordon
  • Representatives of public sector bodies and the private sector
  • Members of the media
  •  Other distinguished ladies and gentlemen

Good morning.

Five years ago, a powerful message ignited the Caribbean region – 1.5 to stay alive!  

Four resounding messages emerge: Communicating Urgency. Lobbying the global community to heed the science.  Advocating for deliberate and ambitious actions. Limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, compared to pre-industrial levels.

The landmark Paris Agreement ushered in a new age for international cooperation. It transformed the work of the Global Community and informed how we should address the climate crisis.

Today, I am pleased to join the Government of Jamaica and all our partners in commemorating five years since Jamaica ratified the Paris Agreement.

This milestone is particularly special to us because almost 9 years ago, July 2013, UNDP played a pivotal role in the establishment of the Climate Change Division which at that time was under the Ministry of Water, Land Environment and Climate Change.

Today, through UnCut Conversations, we will reflect on the Progress, Process, Proof, People & Partnerships needed to sustain and amplify climate action.

When we discuss the Progress, we have made since Paris,  

It is clear, Jamaica has moved leaps and bounds.

You have developed an ambitious National Determined Contributions (NDC) and associated financing strategy & implementation plan

You have strengthened Policies, Regulations, and Institutions to address and mainstream Climate Change Adaptation

You have cleared a path for low-carbon development with investments in transforming industries and sectors

You have promoted and advanced local level actions to ensure that Climate Change is integrated into the lives and livelihoods of citizens of Jamaica.

There is a great deal left to be accomplished, but let’s pause to celebrate the Progress to date. Big up on a job well done!

We know that the Processes required to deliver our climate agenda are many!

But one invaluable mechanism which is sometimes overlooked, is the engagement of our stakeholders to concretize collective action on Climate Change.

In this regard, the Uncut series has been an exemplary mechanism for: facilitating robust dialogue; helping us to understand the science and the data; telling the story of Jamaica’s climate action and ambitions.

UNDP has been honoured to be part of this process and progress throughout the years.

 As we navigate our commitments from Paris and more recently COP26 in Glasgow.

I encourage us to look at the science, to the Proof, to inform our work.

UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner reminds us that:

“Heeding the science is the gateway out of the climate crisis”[1].

Continuing to ignore the science will put people and planet in peril like never before. 

UNDP remains committed to deploying evidence-based tools and methodologies anchored in the science.

 We will continue to partner with the climate scientists, academia, think-tanks, private sector, youth, persons with disabilities and all stakeholders to deploy innovative solutions to achieve the NDCs.

In this regard, UNDP has reflected its commitment to building Jamaica’s climate resilience in our 2022-2026 Country Programme Document for Jamaica.

We will also leverage UNDP’s Global Climate Promise initiative which seeks to support at least 100 countries in turning their pledges into actions.

The Climate Promise Initiative in Jamaica will be aligned to Jamaica’s NDC Plan and national priorities, focusing on: Scale & Speed; Amplified Ambition and Lasting Inclusivity. UNDP stands with you.

We commit to strengthening our partnership with the Government of Jamaica and local stakeholders to improve climate change resilience and promote green recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

I trust that tangible and sustained actions will result from the two-day deliberations and set the stage for meaningful contributions to our survival mission: 1.5 to stay alive.

Thank you.