In a now familiar message to regional leaders, Prime Minister Philip “Brave” Davis yesterday called for unity, action and urgency to find solutions to climate change.
“Last week, I traveled to New York to take part in the Clinton Global Initiative, a community of doers committed to addressing the most pressing issues of our time,” Davis said at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Grenada.
“At that forum, I was pleased to announce a new initiative, The Bahamas Sustainable Investment Programme or BSIP – a three-year economic and investment program that is aligned with our Paris Agreement pledges and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
“If The Bahamas, or indeed the Caribbean, is to succeed, we cannot be passive actors. We must find our own solutions. With this program, we are spearheading our own climate financing solution, and we invite the region, and the world, to partner with us.
“Much like the Bridgetown Initiative, this is about more than just expanding access to funding, it’s about developing a practical pathway to climate justice and global equity.
“It goes without saying that the present international financial process is unsustainable. I would go as far as to call it egregious.
“As SIDS, we are grappling with colossal impacts of a climate crisis we did not precipitate. We are shouldering disproportionate debt burdens. In some cases, such as in The Bahamas, climate change-related debt amounts to over half of total GDP.
“This is not only an enormous figure, it is an unjust figure.”
Last week, Davis announced a new financing facility, The Bahamas Sustainable Investment Programme, to help tackle the fight against climate change.
The program, designed by Resilience Capital Ventures, utilizes three components: The Bahamas Sustainable Investment Strategy, The Bahamas Sustainable Investment Facility, and The Bahamas Sustainable Investment Infrastructure.
Yesterday, Davis called on small island developing states to speak as one.
“We may operate in different geopolitical contexts, but we all lie in the same hurricane alley, we all rely, to a certain extent, on the tourist economy, and we all share common strands of a beautiful island culture under threat,” he said.
“Let us use this occasion to marry our voices, to make ourselves heard.”