INTEGRATED (ADAPTATION) PLANNING AND MANAGEMENT
ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA
In collaboration with
The Caribbean planning for Adaptation to Climate change (CPACC)
This policy document is intended to provide the Government of Antigua and Barbuda with basic
guidelines for the establishment and implementation of a National Climate change Adaptation
Policy, as part of its contribution to the implementation of Component 4: Formulation of a Policy
Framework for Integrated Adaptation Planning and Management which is one of the direct
outputs of the Caribbean Planning for Adaptation to Climate Change (CPACC) Project, a project
funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF).
This paper follows directly from a background document, ‘Country Paper on National Climate
Change Issues for Antigua and Barbuda’ which was drafted with the following primary
• To develop a more complete understanding of the national consequences of climate
variability and climate change for Antigua and Barbuda in the context of economic,
social and environmental stresses; and
• To initiate and sustain an interactive dialogue among scientists, governments, businesses
and communities in Antigua and Barbuda designed to promote the use of climate
information to support practical decision-making.
The primary aim of this Policy therefore is to provide a framework for identifying social
conditions and processes that could potentially influence the impact of climate change and
variability on Antigua and Barbuda and provide various options for practical adaptation planning
and management. The paper will undergo expert and public review prior to the presentation of a
final National Climate Change Policy to the Cabinet of Antigua and Barbuda. With this in mind,
the following document should be viewed as a work in progress.
The public will play a significant role in the policy formulation and implementation process.
This policy will give the public administration and the public at large guidance as to the direction
the Government wishes to take on climate change issues. The effectiveness of the National
Climate Change Policy will depend on the co-operation and response of a number of agencies,
through an integrated approach.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
PREFACE ................................................................................................................... ............ i
INTRODUCTION....................................................................................................... ............ 1
POLICY STATEMENT.............................................................................................. ............ 2
DEFINITIONS............................................................................................................ ............ 2
ADAPTATION POLICY OBJECTIVES ................................................................... ............ 4
APPLICATION........................................................................................................... ............ 4
ADAPTATION POLICY DIRECTIVES ................................................................... ............ 5
Agriculture ........................................................................................................... 5
Fisheries ............................................................................................................... 6
Tourism ................................................................................................................ 7
Human Settlements .............................................................................................. 8
Human Health ...................................................................................................... 9
Coastal and Marine Resources.............................................................................10
Terrestrial Resources and Biodiversity....................................................………11
Fresh Water Resources ........................................................................................12
Education and Information ..................................................................................12
Financial Sector ...................................................................................................13
Transportation and Energy...................................................................................13
ADAPTATION POLICY PLANNING AND MANAGEMENT MECHANISMS ... ............ 14
ACCOUNTABILITY ................................................................................................. ............ 15
MONITORING AND REVIEW................................................................................. ............ 16
CONCLUSIONS......................................................................................................... ............ 16
REFERENCES............................................................................................................ ............ 16
The Government of Antigua and Barbuda agrees with the Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change
(IPCC) and other expert scientific bodies who have confirmed that global temperatures are increasing due
mainly to the release of Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) into the atmosphere as a result of human activities
particularly the burning of fossil fuels. This trend of global warming is predicted to continue for several
decades and it is agreed that it will result in climate change as is evident by the following manifestations:
• A rise in sea level (an estimated rise of mean sea level of 15 to 95 cm during the next 100 years):
The Polar ice caps are melting at an alarming rate. Already, low-lying islands in the Maldives
have been submerged as a result of sea level rise.
• Changes in local and regional temperature regimes (An increase of 1.5°C to 4.5°C over the next
100 years): Increase in coastal water temperatures is producing widespread loss of coral reefs in
• Changes in rainfall patterns (amount and distribution).
• Increase in the number and frequency of severe weather events such as droughts, rainstorms and
hurricanes. The Caribbean Basin experienced increased frequency of cyclonic events over the
last two decades.
Recent experiences of increases in the number and intensity of tropical storms during the past decade
provide striking evidence of the powerful influence of climate variability and or climate change on our
lives. Between 1995 and 1999, Antigua and Barbuda experienced five major storm events. In addition,
drought is a common phenomenon for both islands. The implications of climate variability and change
(whether natural or anthropogenic) for human communities, businesses and natural resources have not yet
been fully appreciated. Our grasp of the important relationship between climate and society is now being
enhanced by recognition of the diversity of human vulnerability and adaptive capacity.
In demonstration of its commitment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
(UNFCCC) and its objectives of reducing global GHG emissions and to address the actual and anticipated
effects of climate change the Government of Antigua and Barbuda have presented its National
Communications to the Convention. Antigua and Barbuda ratified the Convention in 1993 following the
ratification of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer in 1992 but like other
Small Island Developing States (SIDS) recognize its limitations in its ability to address the issues of
reducing GHG emissions. Because of its vulnerability to the effects of climate change Antigua and
Barbuda must place urgent and major emphasis on adapting to climate change.
It is recognized that not all issues and processes relating to climate change have been fully understood and
that further research is required. As indicated in the paper on National Climate change Issues there are
significant repercussions for the major sectors of the economy (agriculture, tourism, coastal zone, energy,
fisheries, forestry, health, human settlements, and water resources). It is anticipated that the following
impacts will likely occur:
• Reduced agricultural productivity and changes in agricultural technology and systems;
• Increased coastal erosion and infrastructure damage as a result of the increased intensity of
cyclonic events and storm surges.
• The flooding and submergence of coral reefs, wetlands and coastal lowlands due to sea level
• Loss of marine and terrestrial biodiversity as a result of changes in temperature and rainfall;
• An increase in the occurrence of pests and other vectors, contagious diseases and stress-
• The depletion of water supplies.
Climate variability and change pose both challenges and opportunities for Antigua and Barbuda.
The international response to global climate change articulated in the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol
therefore offers Antigua and Barbuda new opportunities to meet its development goals and priorities.
In recognition of the need for a policy to guide national actions to address the effects of climate change,
the Government of Antigua and Barbuda is encouraging all sectors of society to coordinate their efforts in
ensuring the sustainable development of the country. The Climate Change Adaptation Policy encourages
all agencies in Antigua and Barbuda to explore and access the opportunities being developed by the
climate change negotiation process and include considerations of possible impacts of climate change in
their planning and development processes. It also mandates the relevant government agencies to develop
and implement adaptation policy options for their sectors.
Adaptation refers to measures, which countries should undertake to respond to the adverse impacts of
global climate change and sea level rise.
CPACC is the Caribbean Planning for Adaptation to Global Climate Change project. It is a Stage I
climate change adaptation project funded by GEF and is implemented in CARICOM States from 1997 to
Global Warming refers to changes in the global climate (increased temperatures which affect other
climatic elements) produced by the emission of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere through energy
production and use, land use patterns, agriculture, industry, and waste management. Climate change also
occurs naturally and it is difficult to make a clear distinction between the two.
Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) are those gases in the atmosphere, which limit the earth/atmosphere system
from emitting long-wave radiation, and results in global warming. The major GHGs responsible for
causing climate change are carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N20). The Kyoto
Protocol also addresses hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), and sulphur hexafluoride
The Kyoto Protocol to the UNFCCC assigns emission reduction targets that Annex I Parties are required
to meet within the period 2008 to 2012; it also specifies the flexibility mechanisms or means by which
those targets are to be met.
Flexibility Mechanisms - The Kyoto Protocol establishes three mechanisms to increase the flexibility and
reduce the costs of making emissions cuts. These are:
1. Joint implementation allows two or more Annex I Parties to enter into joint ventures, which
reduce their net emissions of greenhouse gases. The credits for emission reductions will be based
upon mutual agreement.
2. Annex I Parties are permitted to trade in emission reduction units, which can be used to meet
their emission reduction targets.
3. The CDM permits non-Annex I Parties to participate in projects with Annex I Parties to meet
their emission reduction targets.
The rules under which these flexibility mechanisms will operate are still being negotiated.
Mitigation refers to actions to reduce the net emission of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
Sea level rise is the rise in relative sea level produced by the expansion of water as a result of rising
temperatures and the additional water produced as the permanent ice fields melt.
Annex I countries are those so-called “developed” countries which have ratified the UNFCCC and have
undertaken certain obligations under the Convention to reduce their emissions of greenhouse gases and to
assist developing country Parties in adapting to the adverse impacts of global climate change and sea level
rise. They include the 24 original OECD members, the European Union, and 14 countries with
economies in transition (Croatia, Liechtenstein, Monaco and Slovenia joined at COP-3, and the Czech
Republic and Slovakia replaced Czechoslovakia).
Global Environment Facility (GEF) is a multi-billion-dollar organization that was established by the
World Bank, the UN Development Programme, and the UN Environment Programme in 1990. It operates
the Convention's "financial mechanism" on an interim basis and funds developing country projects that
have global climate change benefits.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC): The IPCC is an organization that was established
in 1988 by the World Meteorological Organization and the UN Environment Programme. It conducts
rigorous surveys of the worldwide technical and scientific literature and publishes assessment reports that
are widely recognized as the most credible existing sources of information on climate change. The IPCC
also works on methodologies and responds to specific requests from the Convention's subsidiary bodies.
Protocol - A protocol is linked to an existing convention, but it is a separate and additional agreement that
must be signed and ratified by the Parties to the convention. Protocols typically strengthen a convention
by adding new, more detailed commitments.
Ratification - After signing the Convention or the Protocol, a country must ratify it, often with the
approval of its parliament or other legislature. The instrument of ratification must be deposited with the
depositary (in this case the UN Secretary-General) to start the 90-day countdown to becoming a Party.
Article 4.2 - This Convention article contains specific commitments for developed country (Annex I)
Parties only, notably to take measures aimed at returning greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by the
Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) - The Kyoto Protocol establishes the CDM to enable
industrialized countries to finance emissions-avoiding projects in developing countries and receive credit
for doing so.
National Communications - A central requirement of the Convention (and the Protocol) is that each
Party must inform the others about its national climate change activities. Many developed countries have
submitted their second reports and developing countries have started to submit their first.
ADAPTATION POLICY OBJECTIVES
The primary goal of the Climate Change Adaptation Policy is to prepare all sectors of Antigua and
Barbuda to meet the challenges of global climate change through the understanding its impacts and
application of appropriate adaptation options. Specific objectives of this policy are to:
1. Improve the understanding of the vulnerability of the country and sectors to climate change and its
impacts on the development process with the view of:
• Conducting systematic research and observation on climate change related factors
• Increasing knowledge and understanding of climate change issues and improving national and
regional predictions of climate change impacts in order to provide inputs to long-term planning
• Improving understanding of the effectiveness and impacts of measures to adapt to climate change.
• Avoiding, minimizing and adapting to the negative impacts of climate change on the different
sectors of Antigua and Barbuda.
2. Promote the development of economic incentives, which encourage investment in public and private
sector adaptation measures. These should help to increase sustainable economic development.
3. Foster the development and application of appropriate legal and institutional systems and
management mechanisms for planning and responding to global climate change.
4. Develop the negotiating position of Antigua and Barbuda on climate change issues at the regional and
international levels to promote its economic and environmental interests.
This policy shall guide the work of all sectors including governmental, statutory, non-governmental and
civic entities which are involved in or which may seek to become involved in addressing climate change
issues as they directly or indirectly affect Antigua and Barbuda. The effectiveness of the policy will
depend on the extent to which the general public is aware of the issues of climate change impacts and
The Antigua and Barbuda Climate Change Adaptation Policy is directed specifically at all government
agencies and NGOs, which execute policies or provide goods and services in sectors, which may be
impacted by global climate change. These include but are not limited to ministries that deal with
agriculture, fisheries, forestry, environment, coastal zone, tourism, parks and protected areas, housing,
health and social welfare, local councils, water resources, public works, communication, transportation,
and energy. These agencies are expected to directly apply appropriate adaptation options within their
sphere of work.
Other agencies, which enunciate and guide government’s policy will also need to consider and include
this policy in their planning approaches and mechanisms. These agencies will include but not limited to
the ministries that deal with economic development, planning and development control, finance, legal
affairs and justice, foreign affairs, trade, industry and commerce. The policy will have direct implications
for other institutions such as the insurance agencies, banks and other lending institutions.
The agencies with special responsibility for education and information will play critical roles in ensuring
that the Climate Change Adaptation Policy is considered and included in all education and public
awareness programmes throughout Antigua and Barbuda. This policy has direct applications for the
ministries that deal with education, information, and technology including all sectors, both public and
private, academia, civil society and the media. They can play a much greater role in developing and
participating in programmes and projects that are becoming available through the climate change
negotiation process. These include capacity building opportunities, new sources of funding, and access to
new technology. Funding and technology in Annex I countries are in the hands of the private sector and
through the flexibility mechanisms, they are seeking partners in non-Annex 1 counties such as Antigua
and Barbuda to help them meet their countries’ GHG emission reduction targets.
ADAPTATION POLICY DIRECTIVES
The National Climate Change Committee should be authorized to give oversight of the initiation,
management and implementation of the National Climate Change Adaptation Policy for Antigua and
Barbuda. The Chief Meteorologist, as part of this committee, will play a pivotal role in the process. The
various initiatives on climate change generated by the different sectors should be directed to the National
Climate Change Committee.
The National Climate Change Committee should:
1. Ensure that it includes representatives from all major sectors, including Agriculture, Fisheries,
Forestry, Natural Resources, Environment, Tourism, Finance, Planning, Transportation, Energy,
information, education, National Office of Disaster Services (NODS) and non-governmental
organizations. The purpose of the committee is to provide advice to government on all aspects of
climate change and supervise climate change projects in Antigua and Barbuda.
2. Assist all sectors in Antigua and Barbuda in the preparation/adoption of climate change
vulnerability studies and adaptation options.
3. Convene regular meetings to receive and disseminate information. It should also prepare an
Annual National Report on Climate Change. This could include a report on the climate of the
country, climate change projects being implemented and the status of the climate change
4. Undertake a public awareness campaign to advise all sectors of the population on the threat posed
by climate change and proposed options for addressing climate change.
Although agriculture does not generate much foreign revenue, the domestic economy continues to rely on
agricultural production whether commercial or subsistence. Climate-related changes in temperature,
rainfall and tropical storm patterns may seriously impact agricultural production and threaten food
security. Problems created in the agricultural sector as a result of climate change are likely to include:
• Increased water demand and reduced water supply due to increased temperatures;
• Increased occurrence of agricultural pests in addition to an enhanced vulnerability to pests and
weeds through changed hydrologic and atmospheric conditions.
• Reduced production and loss of crops and animals due to modified and agro-climatic regimes;
• Accelerated soil erosion and increased salinization.
• Reduced availability of water for agriculture, particularly during times of competition with
domestic and tourism demands; also increased evapo-transpiration as a result of higher
• Heat stress, particularly on poultry and livestock; and a reduction of rough pastures available for
Consequently, the Agriculture Department of the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, and Fisheries is
1. Undertake improved research on crops and animals adapting to climate change and sea level rise.
Consideration should be given to varieties of crops and animals that can withstand conditions of
drought, flooding, higher temperatures and increased salinity and the maintenance of viable
populations of local crop and livestock races.
2. Embark on an extensive education and public awareness programme to share information and
findings to the general public and to farmers in particular.
3. Prepare adaptation options for those crops and animals, which are threatened. These may include
the introduction of varieties, which are more tolerant to the new climatic regime, diversification,
and the introduction of new agronomic practices.
4. Promote the use of new cultivars and practices in the agricultural community including the
introduction of effective agronomic practices and the use of appropriate technology such as
suitable irrigation systems, soil and water conservation practices and pest-crop interactions. The
aim is to ensure food security and sustainable food production.
5. Establish an integrated Disaster Management Plan for agriculture. This should give consideration
to integrated watershed management including appropriate water storage devices and an effective
Drought and Flood Management Plan.
6. Include a report on climate change related activities in the Ministry’s Annual Report
7. Provide a report on its climate change activities to the National Climate Change Committee.
The fisheries of Antigua and Barbuda will undergo threats from climate change mainly through the
impacts on the critical habitats such as coral reefs, sea-grass beds, wetlands and beaches. Specific threats
• Increased stress on breeding grounds and habitats from sea level rise and altered hydrological
• Longer and more intense periods of rough seas affecting the availability of fishery resources.
• Increased damage and losses to fishery equipment, vessels and infrastructure from storm and
• Increased pressure on the fishery resources by persons displaced from other sectors.
The Fisheries Division, within the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands and Fisheries, is required to:
1. Undertake research into impacts of climate change on the fisheries of Antigua and Barbuda.
2. Publicize appropriate information and findings especially to the fishing community
3. Increase its monitoring activities in critical coastal and marine habitats particularly coral reefs,
sea grass beds, wetlands and beaches. This should help to improve data collection and
management system for the fishery resources.
4. Include a report on climate change related activities in its annual report. Specific reference
should be made to the implementation of recommendations such as:
• The construction and reinforcement of infrastructure at appropriate fish landing sites,
• Development of appropriate technology to design and build new and improved fishing gear
• Possible alternatives including aquaculture development and a shift towards targeting the
• Establishing a system of Marine Protected Areas (MPA’s),
• Developing the legislative capacity to manage the fisheries, including updating of existing
5. Provide a report on its climate change activities to the National Climate Change Committee.
In Antigua and Barbuda, tourism remains the major contributor to the economy of Antigua and Barbuda.
The government therefore recognizes that climate change can have serious deleterious effects on this
sector. The negative impacts will include:
• Damage and loss of critical resources (coral reefs, sea-grass, beaches, wetlands, natural
vegetation, other natural resources and attractions) on which the tourist industry depends.
Possible changes or loss of these resources will also lead to loss of economic returns.
• Threatening coastal water supplies through saltwater intrusion into the freshwater lenses,
particularly in Barbuda. Tourism is a water-intensive sector.
• Damaged, destruction and loss of hotels and other tourism infrastructure located in coastal areas
susceptible to storm surges, erosion and sea-level rise
• Reduced visitor arrivals resulting from the higher frequency of extreme weather events such as
hurricanes, as well as more options to travel to alternative destinations as a result of higher
In an effort to ensure appropriate approaches to adaptation in the tourism sector, the Tourism Department
within the Ministry of Tourism and the Environment should:
1. Prepare climate change vulnerability studies of the tourism industry and undertake appropriate
2. Prepare adaptation options for those sectors threatened by climate change.
3. Conduct public education and awareness campaigns re: climate change and tourism and ensure
that there is adequate public participation in tourism development and planning.
4. Strengthen legislative frameworks for coastal development including EIA legislation/regulations,
environmental guidelines for tourism and other forms of development and the establishment and
enforcement of land use policy and regulations/legislation.
5. Decentralize coastal tourism development and promote eco-tourism and other forms of non-
consumptive uses that could benefit from the opportunities being developed by the flexibility
mechanisms of the climate change negotiation process.
6. Develop a Tourism Master Plan, which should give consideration to climate change concerns.
7. Include a report on climate change related activities in the Ministry’s Annual Report.
8. Provide a report on its climate change activities to the National Climate Change Committee.
The built environment, whether made of wood, concrete or steel, is susceptible to the forces of nature. It
is recognized that Climate Change is likely to impact negatively on human settlements. Climate
change/sea level rise impacts on human settlements in Antigua and Barbuda are likely to include:
• Destruction and loss of infrastructure in low-lying coastal areas arising from sea level rise; also
includes the heightened vulnerability of tourism properties in the coastal zone.
• Damage to houses, businesses and other properties due to increased intensity and frequency of
• Flooding and damage to coastal property and infrastructure due to storm surge and storm run-off
especially in low-lying areas;
• Increased costs for providing sea defense mechanisms;
• Increased costs and reduced availability of insurance coverage for property; and
• Changes in the employment structure of the country.
Government authorities including the Department of Lands and Surveys, the Central Housing and
Planning Authority in conjunction with The Public Works Department, NODS and the Development
Control Authority should:
1. Initiate/review climate change vulnerability studies of residential areas especially those along the
coast of Antigua and Barbuda.
2. Foster increased education and public awareness campaigns on climate change and its effects on
human settlements. This should help to increase and strengthen community level disaster
3. Prepare adaptation options to meet the threat of climate change and sea level rise on human
4. Develop and implement a plan for the relocation or protection of settlements and infrastructure
(including critical facilities and utilities) at risk from the effects of climate change
5. Enact the National Physical development Plan in order to:
• Enforce existing regulations and where necessary develop new regulations, which promote
good building practices to meet the threat of sea level rise and the impacts of hurricanes.
• Make prescriptions regarding the location of future settlements and urban development
without compromising water supply and other such requisites for the sustainability of
• Integrate Climate Change considerations into the physical planning process including the
implementation of Environmental Impact Assessment requirements
6. Include a report on climate change related activities in the Annual Report of the appropriate
7. Provide a report on their climate change activities to the National Climate Change Committee.
Several recent initiatives aim to evaluate climate’s effects on health. Though temperature extremes can
have direct impacts on human health and several reports, attempt to draw direct relationships between
climate and emotional health, it is climate’s impact on pathogens and vectors of disease that poses a threat
to most people. Anticipated climate change impacts on the health of the population of Antigua and
• Increased incidence of vectors that can enhance opportunities for breeding of dengue bearing
• Damaged water supply systems could cause a shortage of potable water. This in turn could impact
negatively on hygiene and sanitation standards, resulting in the outbreak of disease such as
cholera, gastro-enteritis and increase the risk for other diseases like malaria and yellow fever;
• Increased cardio-respiratory and allergic disorders due to climate-enhanced increases in air
• Injuries, increased risk of various infectious diseases, and increased mental and physical stress
and disorders arising from hurricane activity;
• A wide range of public health consequences, particularly in terms of environmental health and
• Increased rainfall patterns may produce greater contamination of coastal and fresh water supplies
leading to a greater incidence of skin, eye and ear diseases.
• Drought conditions can affect food production and daily nutrition. Flooding and drought can
affect the economic and ultimately psychological well being of farmers, especially those involved
in marginal or subsistence agriculture.
The Ministry of Health should:
1. Undertake the necessary health related research and information gathering in order to strengthen
the basis for sound decision-making in the health sector.
2. Prepare appropriate options to address the potential threats, in the short, medium and long-term
periods. These should be included in the National Health and Safety Plans.
3. Sensitize and educate health personnel and the general public about climate- change related
health matters. This should focus on promoting awareness programmes towards reducing health
risks associated with diseases such as malaria, dengue and cholera.
4. Ensure the strengthening of health service delivery capacity in Antigua and Barbuda.
5. Increase medical supplies and improve the quality of health services in Antigua and Barbuda.
6. Increase efficiency in solid waste management systems including the monitoring of waste (both
solid and liquid) with appropriate adaptation and possible relocation of landfill sites
7. Review and update health legislations and increase enforcement of these legislations
8. Include a report on climate change related activities in the Ministry’s Annual Report,
9. Provide a report on its climate change activities to the National Climate Change Committee
Coastal and Marine Resources
The coastal zone will face many threats as a result of global warming and sea level rise. The
overwhelming tourist attraction in Antigua and Barbuda is the coastal zone. Any threat to the coastal zone
could have major repercussions on this and other thriving industries. Impacts of climate change on the
coastal and marine resources of Antigua and Barbuda are expected to include:
• Submergence and inundation of beaches and coastal lands, including coral reefs, sea-grass beds
and mangrove swamps, as a result of sea level rise
• Erosion of beaches and coastal lands due to sea level rise and changing coastal processes;
• Structural changes in the Fishery Sector, including loss of fishery production due to increased sea
temperatures and sea level rise;
• Submergence, silting and loss of sea-grass beds;
• Destruction and loss of mangroves and wetlands
• Fish kills and coral reef degradation and loss due to submergence and bleaching as well as
• Salinization of aquifers; and
• Destruction to human settlements and infrastructure along the coast from intensified storm surge
and coastal flooding.
The ideal would be to develop a Coastal Zone Management Authority specifically to deal with all issues
related to the coastal zone. In the absence of this body the following agencies: Tourism Department,
Environment Division, Fisheries Division, should collaboratively:
1. Undertake national public education and awareness campaigns on climate change impacts on the
coastal zone. Vulnerability studies of the coastal zone should also be done.
2. Prepare adaptation plans for the coastal zone to address the impacts of climate change. This
should include short, medium and long-term measures to protect coastal lands and to increase the
resilience of coastal ecosystems and resources.
3. Foster increased participation of the general public in development and planning re: climate
change impacts on the coastal and marine environment.
4. Maintain the inventory of coastal zone resources developed through the CPACC project. This
will provide information for a Coastal Zone Management Plan.
5. Ensure the development of new legislations and the updating and enforcement of existing
legislations, to deal with issues such as:
• Appropriate setbacks
• Sand mining
• Spills and dumping of waste (including toxic waste) at sea.
6. Include climate change in its Annual Report, specifically, on the State of the Coastal Zone.
7. Provide a report to the National Climate Change Committee on its climate change activities.
Terrestrial Resources and Biodiversity
The Government of Antigua and Barbuda accepts the scientific evidence indicating the likelihood of
significant impacts of climate change on terrestrial resources, including soils, forests and biodiversity.
These impacts are likely to include:
• Changes in the composition of natural vegetation due to changing climatic, hydrological and
• Increased vulnerability of threatened ecosystems due to the same conditions;
• Reduction and loss of soil fertility and increased soil erosion;
• Changes in ecological interactions among animal and plant species.
In order to address the foregoing and related issues, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda through its
relevant agencies (Forestry Unit, Fisheries Division, Environment Division), will:
1. Undertake climate change vulnerability studies of its biodiversity, including forests and other
natural land-cover types, critical animal species and wildlife and the general environment.
2. Prepare short, medium and long- term adaptation options to increase the resilience of terrestrial
resources and to meet the threats of climate change.
3. Implement national strategies for conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity. This
should include the identification and monitoring of the major components of biodiversity, the
protection of rare and endangered species, the protection and preservation of critical bird-nesting
sites and bat-roosting sites and the stabilizing and rebuilding of populations of specific animal
species, such as turtles and the Antiguan racer snake.
4. Coordination of relevant activities and projects, including the Biodiversity Strategy and Action
Plan, the National Report on Convention on Desertification, the National Physical Development
Plan and the National Forestry Action Plan, to include climate change considerations.
5. Include a report on climate change related activities in their Agency’s/Ministry’s Annual Report
6. Provide a report on their climate change activities to the National Climate Change Committee.
Scientific research strongly suggests that water resources worldwide will be affected by climate change.
Likely effects of climate change on the fresh water resources of Antigua and Barbuda include:
• Changes in temporal and spatial distribution due to increased climate variability and occurrence
of severe events such as hurricanes and droughts;
• Contamination of ground water due to salt-water intrusion arising from sea level rise;
• Sedimentation/siltation of dams and reservoirs due to increased soil erosion arising from the
greater frequency of extreme rainfall events; and
• Water shortages, due to more frequent and intense drought periods.
The Government of Antigua and Barbuda through the Ministry of Public Utilities and Aviation will
address these and other related issues through the following activities:
1. Setting up an interdisciplinary body to coordinate, monitor and regulate the use of the nation’s
2. Promote and develop extensive education and public awareness programmes on the relationship
between climate change and fresh water resources. Specific research and studies on these issues
will also be undertaken.
3. Advise the relevant sectors of threats on their supplies of water as a result of climate change and
recommend that they prepare adaptation options, including the protection and maintenance of
critical watersheds, the exploitation of non-traditional water sources such as groundwater,
reforestation and other measures to increase the resilience of watersheds and catchments to
maximise water availability and to reduce soil erosion and sedimentation.
4. Develop and implement a long-term National Water Resource Management Plan including
improved management of the water distribution system and the construction of more water
production and storage facilities. Special consideration should be given to the water situation in
Barbuda. Desalination and selective siting of wells are possible options.
5. Include a report on climate change related activities in the Ministry’s Annual Report.
6. Provide a report of its climate change activities to the National Climate Change Committee.
Education and Information
The success of the Climate Change Adaptation Policy in Antigua and Barbuda depends on the provision
and dissemination of information through the education and information system.
The Ministries of Education and Information should:
1. Include climate change issues in the educational curricula, at all levels.
2. Prepare appropriate educational material on climate change issues to be used by their institutions
at all levels.
3. Provide relevant reports on its climate change activities to the National Climate Change
The Ministry of Information should:
1. Develop and implement an extensive public awareness strategy on climate change for the entire
2. Through the media, assist relevant agencies in Antigua and Barbuda in publicizing the issues
associated with climate change.
3. Provide relevant reports on its climate change activities to the National Climate Change
The financial sector of Antigua and Barbuda will be affected by climate change and its effects in several
ways, including: -
• Reduced capacity of major lending institutions, insurance agencies, and property owners to
perform normal functions, especially the provision and maintenance of property.
• Increase in insurance premium rates due to increased risks (whether real or apparent).
• The rapid diversion of financial resources, that is already scarce, from productive investments to
restorative and productive activities.
In an effort to ensure appropriate approaches to adaptation in the financial sector, the Government of
Antigua and Barbuda through the Ministry of Finance, encourages the financial agencies to make the
following adjustments, where possible:
1. Implement appropriate fiscal and financial measures in order to achieve equitable distribution of
the economic burden between stakeholders;
2. Sensitize stakeholders about the effects and implications of climate change; this could also
include the identification of appropriate adaptation options that may be implemented.
3. Create appropriate mechanisms, including incentives for rewarding stakeholders who developed
appropriate risk management measures and mitigation activities to address the impacts of Climate
Transportation and Energy
The energy and transportation sector, of Antigua and Barbuda, will be influenced by climate change and
related effects. Negative impacts are likely to include:
Destruction and loss of infrastructure especially air and sea port facilities.
Damage and loss of roads, bridges, utility poles and lines (electricity, telephone, water).
The Government of Antigua and Barbuda through the Ministry of Public Utilities, Aviation,
Communication and Transport, in collaboration with The Public Works Department, the Air and Sea Port
Authorities and the Transport Board, will address these and other related issues through the following
1. Undertake climate change vulnerability studies of the nations roads, bridges, air and sea- ports.
This should provide information for educational and public awareness activities.
2. Prepare appropriate adaptation options to meet these threats.
3. Develop a comprehensive Transport Plan for Antigua and Barbuda. This should give serious
consideration to climate change issues.
4. Include a report on climate change related activities in the Ministry’s/Agency’s Annual Report.
5. Provide a report on its climate charge activities to the National Climate Change Committee.
There are opportunities available to SIDS such as Antigua and Barbuda through the climate
change negotiation process. These are specified in Article 4.2 in reference to Annex I
Countries. Antigua and Barbuda should accept available opportunities and rapidly pursue these
new sources of funding to meet its growing demand for new energy sources and technology
The Government of Antigua and Barbuda through the Ministry of Public Utilities should:
1. Convene an Interdisciplinary Energy Committee comprised of energy producers, distributors and
the major users to formulate a national energy plan and provide the Government with advice on
2. Undertake climate change vulnerability studies of the energy sector. Establish renewable energy
3. Develop public education and awareness programmes focusing on energy supply, demand and the
need for sustainable usage by all consumers.
4. Provide regular energy audits and include a report on climate change related activities in the
Ministry’s Annual Report.
5. Provide a report on their climate change activities to the National Climate Change Committee.
ADAPTATION POLICY PLANNING AND MANAGEMENT MECHANISMS
The Government of Antigua and Barbuda will ensure that the goals, objectives, principles and directives
of the Climate Change Adaptation Policy are realized. This will be dependent on the following steps:
1. The National Climate Change Committee should be institutionalised to a level that will ensure
that it will be fully functional to implement major aspects of the policy.
2. The National Climate Change Committee should establish a National Climate Change Center.
The Center should be charged with the establishment of a national Climate Change database and
information system to be used by all relevant agencies. It should also monitor and maintain a
database on all climate change activities undertaken in Antigua and Barbuda.
3. Strengthening of the Meteorology Unit and NODS to work in collaboration with the National
Climate Change Committee in order to improve data collection, management and analysis for the
implementation of the policy.
4. The establishment of an effective legal and institutional framework for:
• The maintenance and enhancement of the natural environment;
• The formation of a Coastal Zone Management Unit.
• The implementation of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), which should incorporate
the results of climate change vulnerability studies in all developments.
• The development, application and enforcement of building codes, engineering standards for
roads, bridges, jetties and other such structures to incorporate appropriate climate change
• Incorporation of Climate Change considerations into Governments budgetary process.
• Incorporation of Climate Change considerations into the planning and activities of major
government ministries, including: Agriculture, Lands, Fisheries; Health, Education and
technology, Information, Public Works and Communication, Tourism and Environment,
Economic Development, Finance, Justice and Legal affairs.
5. The Coastal Zone Management Unit or the Fisheries Division should maintain the inventory of
coastal zone resources initiated by the CPACC project. The Coastal Zone Management Unit/or
the relevant government agencies should incorporate climate change in its integrated coastal zone
6. The Lands and Surveys Divisions within the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, Fisheries should
maintain an inventory of the nation’s terrestrial resources including sufficiently detailed
topographic and bathymetric maps to monitor land use changes and sea level rise.
7. The Development Control Authority should include available climate change vulnerability studies
as a guide in land use planning especially in the implementation of the National Physical
8. The National Office of Disaster Management (NODS) should incorporate climate change and sea
level rise into the natural disaster preparedness and response process.
9. Use of transportation, energy and water resources within Antigua and Barbuda should be
monitored and regulated by interdisciplinary committees that will include climate change and sea
level rise considerations in their national plans.
10. The development of mechanisms to ensure that the information generated through research and
monitoring is incorporated into the decision-making process across all sectors of Antigua and
Adaptation to Climate Change is the responsibility of the entire community. Civil Society is therefore
encouraged to collaborate with Government and its agencies in the development of appropriate measures
The National Climate Change Committee should be responsible for overall climate change activities
within the country. Specific Ministries, departments and agencies are responsible for implementing
activities in their sectors and report on these to the National Climate Change Committee. The National
Climate Change Centre should serve as the Secretariat of the Committee. The National Climate Change
Committee should produce an Annual Climate Change Report for submission to the Cabinet of Antigua
MONITORING AND REVIEW
The National Climate Change Committee for Antigua and Barbuda will be responsible for monitoring the
implementation of the National Climate Change Adaptation Policy. The committee should regularly
review the Policy in order to monitor implementation success of the policy directives and provide regular
progress reports to the Cabinet of Antigua and Barbuda.
After five years, or sooner if necessary, the Government shall review the mandate, terms of reference and
composition of the National Climate Change Committee with a view to assess its success for the period
under review. There should also be national consultations on the policy to determine its effectiveness in
achieving its goals and objectives.
A review of the policy may be necessary, following the publication of the IPCC Assessment Reports,
which are produced every five years. The next Report is scheduled for 2005.
Climate Change is a global problem requiring worldwide solutions. However Antigua and Barbuda, as a
developing country has limited resources to engage in a comprehensive Climate Change policy akin to
that of the developed countries. The Climate Change Convention has created mechanisms whereby
developing countries may access financial and technical assistance to mitigate the effects of Climate
Change. In developing a Climate Change policy, these mechanisms ought to be borne in mind.
Legislative reform, encompassing proper ratification of the treaties relevant to climate change, is essential
for the success of this policy. Legislations should be enacted giving full domestic force and effect to
Antigua and Barbuda’s obligations with respect to climate change.
In summary, it is submitted that a climate change policy should seek to adhere to the terms of the Climate
Change Convention with due regard for all of the obligations assumed by Antigua and Barbuda under
The following documents and legal instruments should be used to guide the implementation of the
Climate Change Adaptation Policy for Antigua and Barbuda.
Antigua and Barbuda Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan
Antigua and Barbuda Climate Change Issues Paper
Antigua and Barbuda Country Case Studies on Climate Change Impacts/Adaptation Assessments for
Agriculture, Fisheries, Coastal Zone, Health, Human Settlement and Water Resources.
Antigua and Barbuda’s Initial National Communication to the Conference of the Parties
Antigua and Barbuda’s 1994 Inventory of Sources and Sinks of Greenhouse Gases
Antigua and Barbuda Fisheries Act (1984) and Fisheries Regulations (1990)
Antigua and Barbuda Forestry Act (1941), Forestry Regulations 1941, 1952)
Antigua and Barbuda Forest & Wildlife Act
Antigua and Barbuda Tropical Forestry Action Plan (TFAP, 1985)
Antigua and Barbuda Land Development and Control Act (1977)
Antigua and Barbuda Public Utilities Act
The St. Georges Declaration of Principles for Environmental Sustainability in the OECS
Program of Action for Small Islands Developing States (SIDS – POA, 1994)
Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean
Region (Cartagena Convention, 1983) and its protocol concerning Specially Protected Areas and wildlife
Convention on Biological Diversity (CDB, 1992)
United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (1992)
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC, 1992) and its Kyoto Protocol
Montreal Protocol on substances that deplete the Ozone Layer
Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural heritage