Alumni Highlights: Orville Grey and Jamaica’s commitment to climate change adaptation

Posted: November 12, 2013 at 12:38 pm, Last Updated: November 15, 2013 at 2:40 pm

After more than 5 years of preparation and planning, Jamaica has recently established a new Division of its national government specifically focused on Climate Change. The new Climate Change Division now resides within the renamed Ministry of Land, Water, Environment and Climate Change. Broadly the Division is tasked with coordinating climate change issues and goals across all levels of the government, the NGO community and private sector. One of the first key roles of the Division will be to establish a national climate change database that will serve as a source of information for all public and private sector agencies to incorporate into their planning. Dr. Orville Grey was recently named to be Senior Technical Officer in charge of adaptation in the Climate Change Division and we welcomed him as a participant in our recent graduate/professional course: Applied Climate Change: Gaining practical skills for climate change adaptation.

Dr. Grey works through a group exercise in this year's course.

Dr. Grey works through a group exercise in this year’s course.

His responsibilities include coordination, monitoring, reporting and evaluation of the National Climate Change Policy and the implementation of adaptation programs across Government. He is also responsible for assisting and establishing relationships with donor agencies and funding sources, developing the climate change adaptation database, developing protocols to standardize information gathering and exchange, education and outreach activities with government, NGOs, private sector and the general public. He has worked previously with The Nature Conservancy as a policy associate on conservation and climate change related policies and served a short stint with the United Nations Environmental Program as project officer on the Caribbean Large Marine Ecosystem Pilot Project on Reef Biodiversity and Reef Fisheries. He also has more than eight years of experience conducting environmental impact assessment and audits. Orville has a M.Sc. in Environmental Studies and a Ph.D. in Environmental Biology where his research was focused in part on climate change and its impacts within tropical watersheds and coastal environments through modelling. Orville also lectures at the graduate level at the University of the West Indies (Mona).

Orville’s task is a complicated and challenging one, but we’re confident he will succeed in this exciting new role and SMSC was thrilled to be able to provide assistance in further preparing Orville for his new position.

 “The course was very applicable to my new role within the Government of Jamaica. The coverage spanned detailed climate science, management and communication, and is extensive. The material covered has augmented my knowledge, and the networking opportunity has proven invaluable in forging links in addressing climate change adaptation measures.” – Dr. Orville Grey