Plenary: Keynote Presentations

Keynote speaker: Dr. Virginia Burkett – Initiative for Enhancing Capacity for Climate Risk Assessment and Catalyzing Partnerships to Inform Decisions in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC)

The costly impacts of climate change on human security and ecosystem services are well documented across nations, cities, and indigenous communities in the Americas. Models of future climate change portend the intensification of water shortages, climate-related disasters (such as hurricanes and floods), losses in biodiversity, threats to human health, human conflict and migration. In 2021, the Americas Caucus of the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) identified climate change as a cross-cutting priority for delivering geospatial data and tools to the twenty nations that are members of AmeriGEO, the regional arm of GEO. The needs expressed by AmeriGEO laid the foundation for a shared vision of partnerships among Caribbean, Latin American, and North American countries to enhance capacity for climate risk and vulnerability assessments that support local and regional decision-making. To address the need, AmeriGEO along with its partners are developing the LACI initiative, a project grounded in co-development with a focus on partnership building, peer-to-peer knowledge transfer, and data synthesis and analysis. Representatives of 14 countries have worked together since 2021 to develop strategies for LAC countries to access data and develop tools that are urgently needed for climate adaptation. LACI pilot activities are envisioned as 1- to 2-year collaborative efforts that will emphasize sustainability and scalability over time. The planned activities will elevate innovations that are already occurring in the LAC region. Four task teams have been established to further co-design pilots that deliver on the goals of this strategy. The LACI Partnership is a collaborative effort of AmeriGEO, the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP), the U.S Group on Earth Observations (USGEO), the Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research (IAI), and other regional partners.

Keynote speaker: Dr. Colin Young – “Mobilizing finance for adaptation – the role of regional accredited entities

The current international climate change financial architecture is not meeting the urgent adaptation needs, at scale, of the LDCs and the small island developing States (SIDS) required to build climate resilience to the escalating and adverse impacts of climate change. Lengthy application processes, complex and onerous access criteria, fragmentation of access criteria across donors, overly cumbersome accreditation requirements and lengthy internal review and approval processes collectively stymy the flow/speed of climate finance to the most vulnerable, resulting in a trickle of grant financing for adaptation that is often too little, too slow and too late to meet the needs of the most vulnerable countries. Regional Accredited Entities (RIEs), while also subjected to the above barriers to climate finance, have the potential to assist countries to increase the speed, scale, and access to climate finance and bridge absorption and delivery challenges being experienced by countries due to structural and human capacity constraints. RIEs, being from the regions, are invested and vested in the regions, and as such are important delivery partners for countries. This talk will focus on the role that the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC), a regional Direct Access Entity to the Green Climate Fund and Adaptation Fund, plays in successfully mobilizing climate finance for its Member States as well as in improving the absorption and delivery of climate finance to build resilience.


Location: Gran Aysen Date: March 27, 2023 Time: 11:00 am - 12:30 pm Dr. Virginia Burkett Dr. Colin Young