Dubai UAE– In a significant address at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties (COP 28), Prime Minister Philip Davis of The Bahamas extended sincere gratitude to the President and people of Dubai for their exceptional hospitality. He also congratulated the United Arab Emirates on their National Day, wishing them peace and prosperity.
Prime Minister Davis drew attention to the climate adversities confronted by The Bahamas, citing the country’s recent narrow escape from devastating hurricanes despite record-high temperatures. He elaborated on the damages caused by tropical storms, including extensive flooding, power outages, and substantial economic losses.
Looking ahead, the Prime Minister outlined proactive strategies for The Bahamas. These include reinforcing the National Youth Guard and constructing sustainable housing using innovative, carbon-negative, ocean-resistant concrete developed by Bahamian company Partanna. He also highlighted the potential of Blue Carbon Credits, capitalizing on the nation’s extensive underwater seagrass fields for carbon absorption.
Acknowledging the commitments made at COP 28 towards the ‘Loss and Damage Fund,’ Prime Minister Davis questioned the adequacy and timeliness of global climate efforts, emphasizing the luxury of time that vulnerable nations like The Bahamas do not possess. He stressed the need for immediate action and access to resources, underscoring the urgency of the climate crisis.
Prime Minister Davis called on global leaders to recognize and act upon the shared urgency of climate change. Echoing Pope Francis, he urged leaders to prioritize environmental action over narrow economic interests and military investments, portraying politics as a noble endeavor.
Concluding his speech, Prime Minister Davis poignantly depicted The Bahamas’ plight as a slow, but relentless impact of climate change, rather than through immediate violence. He emphasized the urgent need for global action, ending with a simple yet powerful plea: “Friends: we simply want to live.”