Extensive rains and flooding highlights Grenada’s vulnerability to climate change

It’s approximately 1 week since heavy rains brought on by a Tropical wave led to wide and extensive flooding and landslides in prone areas throughout the country.

The Keith Mitchell-led government has promised to conduct an assessment of the damages that occurred last week Wednesday to decide whether the country is eligible for a payout from the regional insurance company, Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF).

The announcement was made by Minister of State in the Ministry of Climate Resilience with responsibility for Information and Disaster Management Winston Garraway during a press conference last week Thursday, one day after the extreme weather event.

“I know that there is an issue as it relates to Grenada being a part of the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Segregated Fund company…and we having excessive rainfall…I don’t know if that would trigger (funds)”, Sen. Garraway told reporters.

He said the assessment was being conducted by the Ministry of Agriculture.

For just about three hours on the morning of Wednesday August 1, a tropical wave interacting with the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone, lingered over the island, dumping several inches of rain, which resulted in rapidly rising flooded waters, which highlights the island’s vulnerability to climate change.




Sen. Garraway noted that the ruling New National Party (NNP) government has been one of the strong proponents of the impact of climate change in the world.

“…We are training our people as it relates to mitigation measures but we had so much rain over a short period, the whole system was inundated and it speaks clearly to the effects of climate change”, he said.

“One might ask, was there any chance of us mitigating against some of these challenges that we have seen? In some sense, I think yes, in a large sense, no. The system could not have absorbed the amount of water we had that short time,” he added.

The Meteorological Office at the Maurice Bishop International Airport recorded 6 inches of rain over the three-hour period, during which the parishes of St. David’s and St George’s were badly affected.

According to Garraway the heavy rains have caused about 60- landslides significantly affecting the road network in St. David’s.

Information reaching THE NEW TODAY is that about 9 homes within St. David’s and St. George were badly affected and families had to be relocated, while the National Stadium received a beating so severe, it led to the postponement of the national Children’s Carnival Frolic (CFF), which was carded for last week Saturday but was rescheduled to Carnival Monday morning at 11.00 a.m.

One week after the landslides in a number of areas, the debris alongside many of the road network had still not been cleared up.

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