Climate change efforts by Guyana and Belize highlighted in film series

GEORGETOWN, Guyana (GINA) — The efforts of Guyana and Belize in restoring and sustaining their mangrove reserves along the coast, to aid in protecting against natural disasters were recognised in ‘Living Shorelines’, one of three films launched by the British High Commission and CARIBSAVE as part of global efforts to raise public awareness on the importance of climate change adaptation and, its relevance to the Caribbean people.

CARIBSAVE is a non-profit regional organisation formed in 2008 by the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) and the University of Oxford to address the socioeconomic impacts and challenges of climate change in the Caribbean Basin, especially on the tourism sector.

The three films were shown on Tuesday, under the theme “Partnership for Resilience”. They were produced by CARIBSAVE and several regional organisations.

The series is aimed at promoting public awareness of the threats posed by climate change in the Caribbean, and the importance of implementing adaptation strategies.

The films addressed issues such as climate change and Caribbean Tourism, Caribbean Fish Sanctuaries and Living Shorelines.

Speaking at the opening ceremony British High Commissioner to Guyana Andrew Ayre said the films will help to showcase efforts already being taken in the region involving both private and public sector bodies.

In this regard, he said there is no doubt; the time for action to combat the effects of climate change is now.

“Caribbean leaders have clearly stated their intention to move to a low carbon, climate change resilient economy as quickly as possible… Guyana has already taken a leadership role in addressing climate change,” the high commissioner said.

Against this background, Ayre said that the United Kingdom stands ready and is committed to assisting Caribbean countries in responding to climate change.

The sum of £22 million, he said will be spent between 2011-2015 on practical, tangible sectoral and community-based interventions, including supporting 160 vulnerable communities to cope with climate change and providing affordable hazard insurance to protect incomes of 18,000 of the poorest and 50,000 small farm workers when disaster strikes.

The film ‘Climate Change and Caribbean Tourism’ highlighted some of the threats facing the Caribbean’s largest economic sector, tourism, while outlining several adaptation strategies that will provide immediate and long-term benefits to the region.

Meanwhile, the Caribbean Fish Sanctuaries documentary highlighted some of the potential benefits fish sanctuaries can have on the coastal communities in the region.

The ‘Living Shoreline: Mangroves, coral reefs and sea grass’ dealt with the benefits and importance of the coastal ecosystem in protecting the shorelines and vulnerable coastal communities against storm surges and high level sea rising.

The event also attracted delegates who were in Guyana for the 13th Sustainable Tourism Conference.

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