Minister Persaud pushes for serious consideration to confront climate change threats

inister of Natural Resources and the Environment, Robert Persaud being interviewed by Wanita Huburn on Guyana's climate change initiatives.
inister of Natural Resources and the Environment, Robert Persaud being interviewed by Wanita Huburn on Guyana's climate change initiatives.
inister of Natural Resources and the Environment, Robert Persaud being interviewed by Wanita Huburn on Guyana’s climate change initiatives.

[] – The effects of climate change are increasingly affecting the lives of humans on a global scale, prompting many nations to take various steps to mitigate it.

Guyana is among those countries taking serious action in this regard and this effort is being spearheaded by the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment and the Office of Climate Change.

During an interview on the National Communications Network (NCN) yesterday, Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment, Robert Persaud said that the latest report, in November, by the Inter-government Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) indicated a sea level rise of 0.019 meters over 100 years and that temperatures worldwide show that 2014 will be one of the hottest years thus far in recorded history.

Records indicate that the rise in temperatures between 2000 – 2010 is greater, than that from 1970 to 2000, the latter a 30 -year span. Greenhouse gas emissions have also increased, as well as the frequency of extreme weather patterns.

The threats posed by the changing climatic conditions are “existential to humans and the planet as we know it” said Minister Persaud.

The Minister will lead a team, and explain Guyana’s position and its various initiatives at a Conference of the Parties (COP 20) to be held next week, in Lima, Peru. The fact that nearly every country is being affected and some in unique ways, “whether it’s water shortage, it’s drought, different factors even leading to increased conflicts, increased poverty, increased hunger” was noted by the Minister.

The threat of climate change driving conflicts is even recognised by the United States Pentagon, he added, and these facts are changing the world.

The issue is now recognised regionally that in order to address the challenges, a unified response, is required.

“It is now a global problem and what we do, or what another country does, action or inaction of another impacts the entire global community….there cannot be a parochial response”.

Guyana is moving forward along the low carbon pathway for its development with the indigenous Low Carbon Development Strategy, he said. Forest management is also key is addressing this issue as one-fifth of all emissions result from deforestation, and given the fact some 85% of Guyana’s landmass is forested, the minister said, “this a low cost option”.

He added that government also wants to ensure that what is done locally contributes to forest mitigation, hence the push for the Reduced Emission, Deforestation and Degradation (REDD+) partnership with Norway which has resulted in Guyana gaining more than US$135 million.

[Extracted and modified from GINA]



  1. Robert Persaud is repeating the same old story we heard so many times. When will he tell Guyanese something different? Miss Huburn I have to say (with respect) you look really pretty. Next time you meet this guy ask him what is happening with the GEF project and the East Demerara Water Conservancy. One of the major features of this catchment is to prevent flooding, especially with these intense periods of rainfall. Drainage on the coastland especially in Reg.# 4 has become a really critical and urgent issue. Was drainage a major consideration in the areas where thousands of house lots were given out? What about the frequent floods in G/town, getting worse every year because of a clogged drainage system and silted up outfalls that can no longer cope with the amount of precipitation ? What are his adaptation plans for climate change especially the integration of ecosystem based adaptation in the overall strategy? Our contribution to greenhouse gases in the atmosphere is infinitesimal compared to China and the US. Why so much focus on mitigation? Is is just for the money like with the Norway agreement? How does Guyana plan to access the Green Climate Fund, and what is the status of the funding arrangements within the region (CARICOM/GRULAC)? This Minister must stop using other countries as comparisons/ cover to tell Guyanese its not only us. We must all face the flooding issues in Guyana head on because we can no longer afford such enormous losses. Is there a plan to encourage people to move further inland?

    Miss Huburn, continue to look as good as you are.


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