1 million euros for climate plans BES

The Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management has made one million euros available to support the de­velopment of climate plans for Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba (BES). This in ad­dition to the existing invest­ments surrounding climate mitigation and adaptation.

This was stated by Care­taker Minister Mark Habers of Infrastructure and Wa­ter Management in a letter to the Second Chamber of Dutch Parliament in re­sponse to the Royal Neth­erlands Meteorological Institute’s KNMI climate scenarios, published in Oc­tober 2023.

According to Harber, the climate scenarios demon­strate that the Caribbean Netherlands will be greatly affected by climate change. Last year, for the first time ever, Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba, as special munici­palities of the Netherlands, were included in these sce­narios. KNMI expects St. Eustatius and Saba to ex­perience hurricanes with increased frequency and intensity, whereas the hur­ricane activity in Bonaire stays the same. On all three islands, the temperature and wind speed will rise while KNMI expects less rainfall. On Bonaire, the sea rises at an average of 3.7 millimetres (mm) per year, whereas the average rise is 3.0mm per year for St. Eustatius and Saba. Even with low global emission levels, Bonaire can expect a considerable sea level rise (31-78 centimetres (cm)) by 2100. In case of high emis­sions, the sea could rise even more (55-127cm).

The Dutch government is working with the public entities on individual cli­mate plans for Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba, writes Habers. These plans must account for both adaptation and mitigation and must include an overview of the opportunities that the is­lands may take advantage of. “Most importantly, the climate plans must be made for and by the residents of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba and must take local circumstances in account,” the minister writes.

“Given the urgency of mak­ing the Caribbean Nether­lands climate resilient, the government will keep work­ing [on the plans — Ed.] dur­ing this demissionary peri­od, together with the public entities,” Habers writes.

The public entities also joined the International Panel for Deltas and Coast­al Areas (IPDC), which works with KNMI and Cli­mate Adaptation Services (CAS) on climate scenarios.

The Dutch government has allocated one million euros to support the public entities in developing their climate plans. This invest­ment is meant for local sup­port, additional research, residential inclusion and adequate information fa­cilities. Habers expects that further decision making and additional funding will take place with the new cabinet.

The Daily Herald.

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One comment

  1. Smaller and fewer cars on Saba may help. Electric cars and charging stations an interesting idea.

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