PRIME Minister Philip “Brave” Davis at the panel in New York yesterday.
By LYNAIRE MUNNINGS
PRIME Minister Phillip “Brave” Davis has called on industrialised nations who contribute heavily to climate change to pay for the hardships brought on by the phenomenon.
Mr Davis made the comment as a panel guest at the New York Times’ Climate Week Conference.
The panel’s theme was “Money in Action: Closing the Climate Finance Gap”. The panel discussed issues that affect the climate crisis, along with how and why governments should be incentivised in climate finance and sustainable development.
Prime Minister Davis explained what he expects from the global community, developed nations, and the private sector in an effort to withstand natural disasters in the years to come.
“First of all, all pledges or what I call committers who promise that they are going to make available the monies that they said,” he said. “For example, in 2015 it was supposed to be 100 billion each year, but none of this has been realised to date.”
He said those countries heavily contributing to climate change need to “pay the bill now.”
“We need action, and we need to find ways and means to have the industrialised world countries who have been burning fossil fuel for centuries, that have had this cloud of carbon in the air, it’s time to let them pay the bill now,” he said.
Mr Davis explained the government’s reliance on the private sector to bring about change.
“In addition, we think governments can’t do it alone,” he said at the conference yesterday.
“I have set up legislation to engage article six of the Paris Accord to have the private sector engage in the voluntary market, carbon market by offsetting through purchasing carbon credits,” he also said.
Mr Davis said it is expected that this legislation will allow for The Bahamas’ carbon credits to be sold on the market by the first of next year.
He also said since taking office last year, the debt to GDP ratio has been reduced from 105 percent to 85 percent.
“When I took office last year, my debt to GDP ratio was 105 percent. Fortunately, I’ve brought it down to about 85 percent and it’s still going down,” he said. “So, they have to visit this debt to sustainability issue in the context of adaption, mitigation, loss, and damage, particularly when it’s the results of climate change.”
Mr Davis also urged the various lending agencies to re-evaluate the criteria for accessing funds.
The panel included president of World Bank Group David Malpass, Managing Director of International Monetary Fund Kristalina Georgieva, and Mr Davis.