Cross-entity director needed for climate policy

| 05/08/2020 | 21 Comments
Cayman News Service

(CNS): If the Cayman Islands Government is to navigate its way through the impending negative impact of climate change, it will need a director dedicated to the issue who can coordinate policy across all of the relevant ministries. Department of Environment (DoE) Director Gina Ebanks-Petrie told Finance Committee last week that the issue of climate change is not confined to environment and covers many different areas.

Answering questions about the 2011 climate policy, which government has still not adopted, Ebanks-Petrie said her department had tried to implement as much of it as possible but obviously that was limited.

“One of the big issues for us is that climate change is not just an environmental issue; it spans many different sectors, public and private,” she told lawmakers.

“We have been advocating for some time that the matter of climate change be elevated to a position where someone has the authority to direct the many different entities across government to act and participate in preparing the country for climate change and putting in mitigation measures,” she added.

This proposal by the DoE was finally taken on board for discussion recently, not just by the ministry but also the governor’s office, where the idea of elevating it to the premier’s office or the Cabinet Office was being considered. Ebanks-Petrie explained that climate policy had to be dealt with by a ‘cross-cutting’ authority because of its impact on so many areas.

Although COVID-19 interrupted these discussions, the DoE continues to do what it can to work with relevant agencies, she said, noting the close cooperation it has with the Energy Policy Council to push forward commitments in the policy regarding renewables and emission reduction, as the DoE remains responsible for measuring carbon emissions in Cayman to forward to the UK for inclusion in the UN report.

Ebanks-Petrie said that the department was also discussing the need to work out what it will cost the Cayman Islands if it does not act to address the potential impact on the environment.

The Finance Committee pressed Environment Minister Dwayne Seymour to push this forward but he gave no such commitment.

In an evasive answer, he maintained that the environment was important, despite showing little interest in this area of his ministerial responsibility so far during his tenure. Seymour implied that there were too many things going on in the ministry, which was too big. Seymour claimed that he had a huge ministry and not enough senior civil servants to manage it.

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Category: Climate Change, Science & Nature

Comments (21)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Global Warming is a fraud

  2. Anonymous says:

    It is already too late. The cause is in the mirror.

  3. The Goat says:

    Thank you Gina.

  4. Anonymous says:

    DOE, Just ask for an increase in your Budget! We do not need another OfReg waste of funds.

  5. Anonymous says:

    The last thing we need is another high paid person in government doing nothing. Doing our part for climate change is not rocket science.
    1. Give huge incentives for solar power and stop allowing CUC to have all the control.
    2. Build proper roads that include safe areas for bikes, ebikes, walking and exercise in general.
    3. Limit the number of vehicles being imported that use gas or diesel.
    4. Give huge incentives for going electric or hybrid, not just less duties. Have a vehicle trade in program.
    5. Get those ancient, black smoke producing, dump trucks off the damn roads!
    And, while not totally related to climate change, make huge investments in technological infrastructure. Cayman can be so much more than an expensive place to get a sunburn or play legal games enabling rich people to get out of paying taxes.

    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly! Ban gas powered leafblowers, remove these black smoke producing trucks, and dismantle the CPA

  6. Anonymous says:

    The only useful planning you can do is to figure out where to source the fill to raise the place high enough to keep you above water when the time comes. Might actually be possible if you start saving up now.

  7. Anonymous says:

    The only things huge about Jon Jon is his belly and his pay cheque. He is as worthless a minister as they come. The environment is important. Global warming is important. We’re seeing the effects of worsening mosquitos, spreading pandemics, etc. etc. But he seems to be more concerned with Mary and her donkey and the moon’s effects on female libido.

    What an embarrassment to Cayman.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Good job Jon Jon
    Keep up the good work and don’t do anything please; you’ll just make it worse. Sorry if this brings you to tears.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Just add it tp OffReg, they can handle it!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Is this going to be another Off-Reg fiasco? Let’s start by importing less people/less cars/deal with the dump/enforce littering laws. Start with that!

  11. Anonymous says:

    Poor John John.

    Bless his little heart!

  12. Noname says:

    Could someone ponder for a moment that CUC’s commitment to solar is nothing better than lip service and double talk to maintain their chokehold on the matter of renewables on our little island ? Putting Mr Seymour in charge of that policy is nothing better than having an AA convention in a rhum distillery ! Solar + utility scale solar should have been started YEARS ago , the only issue being that we keep such luminaries (sorry for the sarcasm) elected in charge is beyond reasonable in any stretch of the imagination ! And please don’t get me started on the tender subject of the Donkey (Sorry, I stand cooected , Jackass) 🤣🤪🤡🌎

  13. Anonymous says:

    Cayman is one of the most vulnerable countries. When sea levels rise dramatically, we’ll be one of the first places to suffer from it, so we need to take these things seriously and plan for it.

  14. Muppets As Leaders says:

    I feel for you Gina. It’s a bit like lecturing luddites on the benefits of 3D printing. Our MLAs (Muppets As Leaders) were not raised to think that science is real, rather we’ll get by on “a wing and a prayer”.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Exactly what we need; another high paid civil service position to co-ordinate the activities – or lack of them – by other high paid civil servants. When Roy McTaggart says CIG will run out of cash in Spring 2021 unless we borrow $500m.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Why is Cayman letting these sneaky eels casually serve out the balance of their term? They should not only be fired, but made to answer to a formal inquiry, and prosecuted for maladministration. Governments are put on trial all the time for much less. Cayman is so accepting of overt corruption that nothing ever happens! You do it to yourselves.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Give it to OfReg.

  18. Anonymous says:

    More jobs for the select few and more mouths for the private sector to feed.

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