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TTC Special: The Caribbean awaits the hurricane season

TTC Special: The Caribbean awaits the hurricane season
By F.Martin

TTC Service.- The Caribbean Tourism Organization is sponsoring a series of briefings and updates in order to know if the region is ready to face the hurricane session of 2018 that begins on June 1 to November 30.

In recent years storms have been known to arrives earlier and part later than normal. Forecasts indicate that the six-month season could bring 12 to 15 named tropical storms. Of those storms, six to eight are forecast to become hurricanes, with three to five developing into major hurricanes
CTO announced that is sponsoring a series of briefings and updates on May 30 by tourism officials from those countries affected by last September’s storms.

After hurricanes Irma and Maria hit last September, some of the impacted islands are still grappling with severe power outages, lack of supplies, contractors, relief workers and funds.

Puerto Rico, for example, has a still large population that suffers from power cuts and permanent blackouts,

The islands that were hardest-hit immediately began the recovery process, working first to clear the damage just enough to be deemed safe again — and welcome tourists back. Now eight months out for the storms, each small thing has added up. Countries have gone from small projects to larger undertakings: rebuilding homes and hotels, restoring ports and reopening airports to previous operation levels. Those moves have transformed the region’s seemingly grim prospects, even in places that got the one-two punch from both Irma and Maria.

Government officials from the U.K. met recently with leaders in the Commonwealth Caribbean (Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Dominica, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada, Barbados, Antigua and Barbuda, the British Virgin Islands and St. Kitts and Nevis) to explore means of minimizing the impact of extreme weather.

Dominica has benefitted from scores of tourists who volunteered their help and skills in clearing debris from roads, parks and natural attractions, according to tourism minister Robert Tonge. In Barbuda, where 95% of the buildings were destroyed, full recovery may be years away, and only a few hundred of its residents have returned to the island.

But the Caribbean must not only prepare for the hurricane season about to begin. Also to face the global warming, that should get worse as the years pass along.

The scientific community agrees that the hotter air in the atmosphere caused by global warming carries more humidity that elevates the sea level and provokes stronger storms, with more rain and higher surges.

These were among the conclusions of the most recent report from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). While the number of hurricanes may not change much, or may even decrease somewhat, what is most probable with global warming is that we will see a greater amount of high category hurricanes, in the area.

That indicates that the programs to face the hurricanes will have to be permanently perfected during the years to come.