Bermuda 'setting example of how to safeguard environment’ – Minister
Bermuda is a trail blazer in the race against time to combat the climate crisis, according to Walter Roban.
A document the home affairs minister presented to the recent COP26 global warming summit in Glasgow sets out ways to protect Bermuda’s fragile ecosystem and reduce its carbon footprint, he said.
Mr Roban said the paper, The Bermuda Difference in Climate Change, showed what was being done and pointed the way forward.
The minister said: "This document demonstrates Bermuda's commitment to increase the protection of our fragile ecosystem, reducing our carbon footprint and mitigating the impact of climate change.
“Coupled with the Economic Recovery Plan and the Speech From the Throne's announcement of the Marine Development Act, which will include identifying a 20 per cent protected area of our Exclusive Economic Zone, we are setting the example of how to safeguard our environment for future generations."
The document states: “With a population of only approximately 62,000, Bermuda is not a major contributor to the floating garbage that threatens our pristine waters. However, we all have a role to play.
“To that end, we have developed a strategy for the elimination of single use plastics by 2022, which has now been released for public consultation.
“Engagement has already begun with key stakeholders and the public in general.
“The Ministry of Home Affairs is working in partnership with the Ministry of Public Works to begin educating the public through lectures and social media campaigns highlighting the policy and encouraging reduction in the use of single use plastics.”
Mr Roban said that Bermuda was committed to working with others to find solutions to environmental problems.
The paper states: “We will consult with local and international leaders and community members and seek to embrace inclusive processes in the formation and implementation of new frameworks, policies, and programmes to tackle the climate crisis.
“However, in addressing the climate crisis, and in participating in these collaborative efforts, Bermuda will endeavour to do so in a manner that does not exacerbate environmental justice conflicts nor ecological loss or damage.