Minister of Water and Housing, Dr. Horace Chang, has highlighted the negative effects of climate change on small island states, such as Jamaica, which contribute the least to this phenomenon, but are most impacted by it.
“Small island states like us … are likely to have more severe effects from extreme weather conditions than large countries and therefore, are likely to suffer more from changes in climate,” the Minister said.
Dr. Chang was speaking recently, at a handing over ceremony, at which the Water Resources Authority (WRA), an agency of the Ministry, handed over equipment, valued at just under $1 million, to the National Meteorological (MET) Office, at the agency’s head office, at Hope Gardens, in St. Andrew.
“In view of what is happening in the world today, in terms of climate change, some of the problems we have could get worse, unless we take steps to adapt. We need to take steps to manage our watersheds properly,” the Minister said.
He stressed the importance of the work and role of the WRA, as it makes a contribution to Jamaica’s development and the security of its water supply.
Director of the MET Service, Sylvia McGill, thanked the Minister and the WRA for the equipment.
“This is just one of the steps in this collaborative effort with other main stakeholders, and the MET Service is committed to continue to work, to ensure that our high quality of data is maintained,” she said.
“This rainfall intensity equipment is most welcomed and will enhance our ability to monitor rainfall intensity in the project area. We will continue to work with the WRA’s Chief Hydrologist in completing the site selection and preparation for these stations, so that installation can begin as soon as possible,” Mrs. McGill added.
The items include a rainfall intensity gauge; a Hewlett Packard HP 530 1.86 GHZ Celeron laptop, with 1 GB of memory; five Casella Class A Evaporation Pans, with hook gauges and still wells.