Participating in Climate Change Adaptation, Green Recovery & Reconstruction Workshop
In late August, the Ministry of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development (MFFSD), the government agency responsible for the coordination and implementation of climate change policies in Belize, hosted a series of sensitization workshops focused on climate change adaptation, green recovery and reconstruction at the George Price Centre for Peace and Development.
The workshops were delivered through partnership between the MFFSD, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the United Nations Development Programme and funding by the European Union Global Climate Change Alliance to enhance Belize’s resilience to adapt to the effects of climate change. The objectives of the workshops were to:
Promote understanding of how a changing climate affects development goals now and in the future.
Inform on the concepts of climate variability, vulnerability, impacts and adaptation.
Create understanding of the importance of integrating people, species and ecosystems into our work.
Inform on and discuss the concepts of mainstreaming adaptation, adaptive policies and institutions, and enabling conditions for adaptation.
Ensure that participants become familiar with vulnerability assessment in climate adaptation work at appropriate scale and timeframes.
Understand the unique challenges to communicating adaptation to various audiences.
Equip participants with practical, solution-oriented techniques for integrating environmental sustainability into disaster recovery and reconstruction.
On August 30th, the Environmental Research Institute (ERI) through Marine Biologist, Celso Cawich had the opportunity to participate in one of these workshops along with representatives of the Department of the Environment, Belize Weather Bureau (Meteorology Department), Belize Red Cross and WWF.
Presentations were made by WWF and looked at the importance of communicating climate change adaptation concepts in a simple, yet relevant manner to the general public. The presentations touched on several aspects that a country and its citizens should consider during mitigation, response and recovery phase of incidents associated with climate change.
Topics of focus during the day long workshop included – “Adaptation options for Belize”, “Communicating adaptation”, “Identification and valuation of adaptation options”, “Green Recovery and Reconstruction toolkit”, “Key concepts in climate change adaptation” and “Understanding vulnerability”.
Participants of the workshop took home an increased understanding of climate change, mitigation, adaptation and recovery concepts. They also had a chance to improve their skills in communicating these concepts to the general public in a simple, non-technical way while maintaining the integrity of the information.
Celso had this to say about the workshop:
“The workshop was an eye opener. The concepts of climate change adaptation, recovery and reconstruction were translated from technical terms to lay man terminology while keeping its importance. We cannot think of Climate change on an individual level, we must think as a community, as a nation”
Presenters made workshop materials available to all participants in order to disseminate the information, continue to create awareness and to bring the issue of climate change to the eyes of government, NGO’s and the general public.
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