The Ministry of Local Government and Environment will host the expert meeting on adaptation for SIDS
of the Caribbean and Atlantic Ocean regions, which takes place from February 5 to 7, 2007, in
Kingston, Jamaica. It is being organized by the UNFCCC in collaboration with the Regional
Office for Latin America and the Caribbean of the United Nations Environment Programme.
Participants will include experts from SIDS, developed countries, international organizations and
Past and recent evidence continue to indicate that SIDS are particularly vulnerable to
weather-related climatic and environmental natural hazards. Hazards such as tsunamis, tropical
cyclones and sea level rise can not only cause damage to already fragile economies and reverse years
of development efforts, but also poses significant threats to human lives and livelihoods. For
example, Hurricane Ivan caused damage to almost every household in Grenada, Hurricane Jeanne caused
over 2,000 fatalities in Haiti alone, and over 100,000 people were made homeless across the
Caribbean. There is therefore an urgent need to assess and plan for the expected impacts of
The meeting offers participating experts the opportunity to exchange information on assessing the
impacts of climate change and on their countries’ vulnerability to these changes. The
experts will also identify possible areas where further action can be taken to address the adverse
effects of climate change, including through planning and implementing concrete adaptation measures
in the areas of water resources, agriculture, health, tourism, coastal zones and natural
ecosystems. In addition, they will discuss opportunities for disaster risk management and
reduction, for example through establishing insurance schemes.
Furthermore, available opportunities for collaboration within and outside SIDS will be discussed as
well as the elaboration by representatives from the World Bank, the United Nations Development
Programme and the United Nations Environment Programme on how adaptation measures can be supported in
the SIDS’ overall efforts to achieve sustainable development.
This expert meeting on adaptation is part of a series of regional adaptation events mandated by the
annual Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC. The first workshop was held in Peru in April
2006 for the Latin American region. The second workshop was held in Ghana in September 2006 for the
African region. During the course of this year, another expert meeting for the Pacific
and Indian Ocean SIDS and a workshop for the Asian region will be organized. The results of all
these events will feed into negotiations at SB 26 and COP 13 on what future action is necessary to
advance adaptation in developing countries.
The background paper “Vulnerability and Adaptation to Climate Change in small island developing
States” and the agenda can be found here.