Antigua & Barbuda and other small island developing states (SIDS) are being encouraged to take full advantage of a new toolkit that will provide countries with a comprehensive source of methods, good practices and knowledge sharing on Climate Change legislation.
"Because of the enormous challenges that small island developing states face from Climate Change, I would expect them to be looking for all the tools they can ... I don't want to overstate the impact of this toolkit but this is one toolkit that we hope will be very useful," said Matthew Moorhead, Legal Advisor to the Commonwealth Secretariat.
The Law and Climate Change toolkit is being designed by UN Environment, the Commonwealth Secretariat and the Secretariat to the United Nations Framework Convention of Climate Change (UNFCC).
"The way the toolkit will work is that, officials would enter various information about Antigua, its problems and what they wanted to do and the toolkit would guide them to best practices," Moorhead, who is on island consulting with government officials, said.
During a news conference, yesterday, he said the toolkit will be an online platform comprising a database of Climate Change laws; a collection of world practices; and a database of climate projects and contracts.
"With the assistance of Antigua & Barbuda, other countries that will be a part of the pilot phase and our partners UN Environment, we intend to build the toolkit into an effective mechanism to address the impact of Climate Change and to fulfill commitments made under the Paris Agreement."
Moorhead has met with representatives from several government departments whom he said, have made valuable inputs which will be incorporated in the toolkit.
He said the toolkit will help policymakers review existing Climate Change laws and build appropriate legislative responses for the twin island states.
The Paris Agreement requires all of its 145 Parties to put forward their best efforts to mitigate and adapt to Climate Change through nationally determined contributions (NDCs), and to strengthen these efforts in the years ahead.
NDCs will be instrumental in meeting the goals agreed to in Paris: to hold the increase in global average temperature to well below 2°C, to pursue efforts to limit the increase to 1.5°C, and to achieve net zero emissions in the second half of this century.
The toolkit will be available online by the end of the year.