The effects of human activity on climate change, especially rising sea levels, are particularly devastating to coastal regions and island nations. In light of this, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Regional Collaborating Center based at St. George’s University (UNFCCC RCC – St. George’s) recently held a workshop highlighting opportunities for clean technologies that can ultimately help stem climate change while also providing economic benefit to countries and businesses through the chance to participate in the carbon market.
“The UNFCCC RCC – St. George’s can help businesses tap into trade in the carbon market by connecting them with governments and institutions that are buying emission reduction credits from clean technology projects,” said Dr. Karla Solis-Garcia, Team Lead of UNFCCC RCC – St. George’s.
When businesses and governments implement clean technology projects or reduce their emissions in different ways, they will earn credits which can then be sold in what is known as the carbon market. The workshop, which targeted businesses, governments, and other stakeholders from Grenada and the Caribbean, addressed how to secure funding, and gain financial reward for implementing clean technology projects. It also brought together holders of existing clean development mechanism, or CDM, projects in the Caribbean to promote the exchange of ideas and experiences.
One of the workshop’s highlights was a presentation by Peer Stiansen, Norwegian Ministry of Environment, whose government seeks to buy clean technology emission reduction credits – just one of the opportunities for Caribbean businesses and governments to earn returns on their climate-saving projects. There are more than 20 projects currently underway in the Caribbean, all of which are registered under the UNFCCC Clean Development Mechanism and have the potential to trade their emission reduction credits in the carbon market. The hotel, transportation, and waste management industries, as well as others with high energy consumption levels, are all well placed to benefit from opportunities presented at the workshop.
“Taking care of the environment is an investment that can bring significant financial returns,” said Dr. Solis-Garcia. “Funds are available through various channels that will provide investment to implement clean technologies, and these technologies can be financially feasible in the long run. RCC St. George’s mission is to provide technical support to those businesses interested in taking part of the shift to a cleaner economic path.”