Greater youth involvement in climate change sensitisation encouragedSunday, May 10, 2015
WATER, Land, Environment and Climate Change Minister Robert Pickersgill is encouraging the nation's youth to become more informed and involved in educating the public about climate change adaptation.
Pickersgill made this call while addressing a presentation ceremony for winners in the ministry's Climate Change Division's logo competition, at the Forestry Department, Constant Spring Road, St Andrew, on May 8.
Delivering the keynote, Pickersgill contended that everyone has the capability to adapt to the impacts of climate change, noting that an essential measure for consideration is the prevention of deforestation, which destroys Jamaica's tree forest cover.
"Plant a tree to protect our watersheds; trees are one of the planet's natural cleaners. They take in carbon dioxide and send out life giving oxygen. They also protect our watersheds by binding the soil so it doesn't wash down into our water sources. The more trees we plant, the better our environment will be," he informed.
Pickersgill also encouraged the youngsters to learn as much as possible about renewable energy, in light of dwindling fossil fuel resources and increasing greenhouse gas emissions.
"Talk to your parents or school board about the possibility of switching to cleaner, greener forms of energy such as solar," he advised.
As part of its thrust to heighten public awareness about climate change, the Climate Change Division hosted the logo competition to encourage the involvement of young persons in the department's sensitisation campaign, targeting adaptation measures and practices.
The competition, which ran from September 2014 to February this year, saw students from 13 secondary and tertiary institutions islandwide participating, each of whom submitted colourful pieces of artwork depicting the message of conservation of the country's natural resources.
The winning entry was submitted by Dihanroy Mitchell of Green Pond High in Montego Bay. The logo is to be mounted under the Climate Change Division segment of the ministry's website.
Meanwhile, Sheena McLean from Northern Caribbean University placed second, with Jermaine Levene of Meadowbrook High School in St Andrew, securing third place.
The awardees received trophies, water catchment tanks for their schools, tablet computers, gift vouchers, and starter accounts from CIBC/First Caribbean International Bank and National Commercial Bank (NCB), among other prizes.
Senior Technical Officer in the Division, Dr Orville Grey said the initiative is indicative of the ministry's commitment to engage young people on climate change issues.