Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma today announced that former Guyana President Bharrat Jagdeo, will lead a high-level team of experts to identify solutions to enable small, poor and climate-vulnerable Commonwealth countries to fight climate change.
According to a release from the Commonwealth Secretariat, Sharma said that Jagdeo will be joined by eight others to lobby the international community to help identify practical solutions for those countries most at risk from climate change.
“Together with eight others, the Group will tackle how best to access resources to support low-emission and climate-resilient development in small and climate-vulnerable states,” Sharma added.
The Secretary-General said that the Commonwealth Expert Group on Climate Finance, convened under his Good Offices for the Environment, will table their report to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Colombo, Sri Lanka in November 2013.
Speaking from Georgetown, the Commonwealth press release reported that Jagdeo said he was delighted to accept the invitation.
The former President said: “Some of the most climate-vulnerable people in the world are in our Commonwealth. Millions of people are in danger – the magnitude of the challenges they face is overwhelming and they cannot face those challenges solely from their own resources. Over the years, many pledges of assistance have been made – but we have not seen enough action. I hope that the Expert Group can identify ways, both to identify financing at a scale that matches the problem, and also to enable Commonwealth Heads of Government to take specific actions to enable financing to be deployed in a way that rapidly gets to the people who need it.”
Sharma added that the Commonwealth Secretariat is facilitating the gathering of evidence on best practices in climate finance through its online workspace for professional communities of practice, Commonwealth Connects:
Jagdeo has been recognized internationally for his role in battling climate change as manifested in the Low Carbon Development Strategy for Guyana which has seen a financing deal from Norway worth potentially US$250M.