According to the Spanish international news agency (EFE), rising sea levels, coastal erosion and the spread of tropical diseases are among the signs of climate change.
“Atlantic Ocean temperatures have been increasing in recent years, and the water’s pH imbalance has been harming marine species,” said Ernesto Díaz, director of the Coastal Zone Management Program at the Puerto Rico Department of Natural Resources, during a news conference organized by El Puente Latino Climate Action Network.
“We are losing our beaches and that not only affects tourism but also our people,” added Díaz, predicting more intense hurricanes.
He urged Caribbean governments to maximize the protection of ecosystems and inhabitants.
Díaz said it is understandable that the Caribbean calls for more international cooperation on the issue and that he expected the region’s representatives to call for action once again at the UN Climate Summit in New York.
“We are the first ones to experience climate change,” he said, noting that populations of coastal areas are particularly vulnerable to rising sea level and hurricanes.
Cecilio Ortiz, associate professor in Public Administration from the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez, said governments must learn about the issue in order to prevent or lessen the impact of climate change on their territories, according to EFE.
Photo: Caribbean vulnerability to climate change (1804caribvoices)
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