Minister for Natural Resources Melvin Turnbull is set to meet with the newly appointed UK Overseas Territories Minister Lord Zac Goldsmith at the Conference of the Parties (COP27) that is now underway in Egypt.
Turnbull is representing the BVI at the COP27, which is one of the most important climate change conferences attended by governments around the world.
According to the United Nations, COP27 Climate is a unique opportunity for the BVI to strengthen its partnership with the United Kingdom government through the newly appointed Overseas Territories Minister Lord Goldsmith.
Turnbull is positioned to meet with Lord Goldsmith to discuss support mechanisms that the BVI can access as it seeks to mitigate the effects of climate change.
The minister is also set to collaborate with other British Overseas Territories, Small Island Developing States and Latin American states to influence the global conversation about climate change solutions; particularly as it relates to the negative effects of climate change on our ecosystems and weather patterns.
Minister Turnbull said that climate change is a global crisis that no territory or country can afford to ignore. He stated that the territory is at a crucial place in history where life will be greatly altered if action is not taken.
“Globally, the increasing frequency and intensity of extreme weather events is impacting the lives and livelihoods of millions of people. Rising global average temperature and rapid global warming are causing alarming consequences on human beings and all other forms of life on earth,” Turnbull said.
“In the Virgin Islands
, we have first-hand experience through increased flooding, stronger tropical weather systems, which includes the devastating Hurricanes of 2017, Irma and Maria. The universal goal of COP27 is to accelerate global climate action through emissions reduction, scaled-up adaptation efforts and enhanced flows of appropriate finance,” he added.
In speaking about the BVI’s mission for COP27, Turnbull said: “It is important to note that small island nations such as ours typically have the smallest carbon footprints and produce the least amount of pollution but, however, suffer consequences that we are far less able to mitigate than larger countries and states, whose contributions to climate change is greater. This is why our presence and participation in COP27 along with other small island states is crucial.”
Minister Turnbull added that he looks forward to the response from the international community to the territory’s concerns, and to the technical and financial partnerships that will materialize from the BVI’s participation in COP27.
The conference will focus on the implementation of the 2015 Paris Agreement, political discussions with focus on climate finance, emission targets, and the role of large states.
Countries at the Conference of Parties have signed on to the world’s major climate change agreements: The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Kyoto Protocol, or the Paris Agreement.