The first United Nations Archipelagic and Island States (AIS) Ambassador for Barbados, Gabrielle Gay, believes developed countries should pay a “climate tax” to prevent an education recession in the Caribbean and AIS.
“These countries with larger economies [than the Caribbean and AIS] need to definitely pay a tax rate. These countries have benefited, whether it be dumping in our oceans or exuding the most pollution into the air and disadvantaging us disproportionately. We’re suffering the most while contributing the least to the problem so there is a need for a climate tax,” she said.
She said the youth suffered the most because climate change was the reason for heightened hurricanes that destroyed institutions.
“Schools are destroyed, then children and young adults are disproportionately disadvantaged in the tropics because then they cannot continue their education how they would like which then leads to a recession in education in the AIS.”
Gay added when schools, which are sometimes used as hurricane shelters, are damaged because of the adverse weather conditions, it takes months, even years to rebuild infrastructure.
“Students in the Caribbean and AIS are experiencing delayed education because it takes weeks something months, let’s look at Haiti, places that have been struck by disaster, even now, they’re still trying to rebuild in 2022 from events that would have happened five or six years ago. The trickle-down effect in 10 or 20 years is you then have students who are delayed, a year or two years or more, because of these aggravated climate change events.”
Gay, who is the founder of The Femme Lex Cohort, said if a tax is paid then the money can then be used to fund more climate change programs and help children and young adults after natural disaster strikes.
“This money would go into deeper climate change initiatives, more climate change programs, funding for programs like mine [The Femme Lex Cohort], as well to continue to help people and persons overall in the education system become more educated on issues as well as create more initiatives that would then benefit us in the Caribbean and Archipelagic and Island States.” (RT)