The Importance Of Climate Change In The Caribbean

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What is Climate Change? According to ‘oxforddictionary.com’ Climate change is a change in global or regional climate patterns, in particular a change apparent from the mid to late 20th century onwards and attributed largely to the increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide produced by the use of fossil fuels. Climate change is already beginning to transform life on earth since around the globe, seasons are shifting, temperatures are climbing and sea levels are rising. Climate change is considered to be one of the biggest threats to nature and humanity towards “Caribbean Small Island Developing States” because it can bring about negative and destructive effects caused by short lived and long lived climatic forces. Mostly likely …show more content…
However, the islands of the Caribbean are not considered to be major producers of greenhouse gases. Developed countries are the main producers of greenhouse gases but island states stand to feel the full effect of climate change impacts, particularly those resulting from sea level rise. The rise in global temperatures causes sea levels to rise because of thermal expansion of water in its natural state, and the melting of glaciers, polar ice caps and polar ice sheets (IPCC, 2008, p. 30). It is therefore critical for the islands of the Caribbean to monitor and understand the importance of climate change. “Caribbean Small Island Developing States” have traditionally depended upon subsistence and cash crops for survival and economic development. While subsistence agriculture provides local food security, cash crops are exported in order to earn foreign exchange. In The Bahamas pineapple and salt industry has provided economic growth and has contributed to the expansion of the economy through linkages with tourism and other related industries (Government of The Bahamas, …show more content…
Tourism is defined as being the commercial organization and operation of holidays and visits to places of interest. Tourism is a major economic sector in many small islands and its importance is increasing since their economics depend so highly on tourism, the impacts of climate change on tourism resources in small islands will have significant effects, both direct and in direct (Bigano et, al, 2005; Viner,2006). The IPCC Climate Change 2007: Synthesis Report (2008) states with very high confidence (a temperature being 21 °C (as cited in Haites et al., 2002, p. 26). With the mean average temperature of the northernmost Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country, The Bahamas, already at 23°C in January and 28 °C in July (Haites et al., 2002, p. 26), the Caribbean may already be too hot for the majority of European tourists. In 2009, the Caribbean received 19.5 million international tourist arrivals, and tourist receipts reached US$22.2 billion and this shows that through tourism the Caribbean is economic growth has been boosted up. Climate not only determines the length and quality of the tourism season, it is also an important driver of tourism demand to some regions, because it affects the natural environment in ways that can either attract or discourage visitors. “Caribbean Small Island Developing States” has invested heavily in tourism-related infrastructure, most of which lies in the coastal zone. All of these assets are

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