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Bahamas Prime Minister says Caribbean nations should push for climate finance at COP27

Bahamas PM urges Caribbean nations to push for climate finance at COP27

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Composed by Jasper Ward

FORT NASSAU (Reuters) – Prime Minister of The Bahamas Perry said at a summit of regional officials on Tuesday that Caribbean countries should pressure developed nations to provide more financing to mitigate the effects of climate change at the upcoming COP27 climate talks.

Bahamian Prime Minister Philip Davis said in a speech that the Caribbean community needs to make sure that developed countries honor past pledges for climate assistance and create new criteria for determining which countries can obtain such aid at the November climate talks in Egypt.

He argued that small island developing states would be ineffective in advocating for their collective interests if they attempted to do so “only as individual Small Island Developing States.”

Eighteen Caribbean countries were invited to the two-day gathering in Nassau, which is expected to yield an “outcome paper” that will be presented at the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference, commonly referred to as COP27.

Davis expressed optimism regarding the United States’ and Australia’s recent efforts to reduce the effects of climate change.

On the other hand, he said, “we are commitment-fatigued and we are pledge-fatigued,” because rich countries had not fulfilled a promise to provide $100 billion in climate aid to poor countries by 2020.

Leaders in the Caribbean have long argued that their countries do not need aid because their per capita income is too high, a metric that, they say, does not account for the heavy debt burdens generated by paying for the effects of climate change.

Due to the increased frequency and intensity of tropical storms, as well as the growing problems caused by droughts and flooding, Caribbean countries are among the world’s most vulnerable to climate change.

(Jasper Ward in Nassau with reporting, Brian Ellsworth with additional reporting, and Paul Simao with editing)