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Guyana Resilience Profile
This report summarizes the resilience situation in Guyana. Although often considered a Caribbean country, Guyana lies on the South American mainland. While rich in natural resources, the high cost of energy can prohibit commercial development, although this may change with the start of offshore oil development in 2020. Guyana’s United Nations Human Development Index score has improved recently, although gender inequality remains a pervasive challenge. The country experiences coastal flooding, flooding due to excessive rainfall, drought, and wildfires. Guyana is not highly exposed to hurricanes, volcanoes, or earthquakes; while it is less vulnerable to these risks than its island neighbors, it is still an active member of CDEMA. While Guyana has several pieces of legislation aimed at building resilience, it has yet to put them into full force.
The report indicates that Guyana struggles with limited institutional capacity to enact disaster risk management activities and limited monitoring and enforcement. There is high duplication of initiatives and a lack of integration or harmonization across activities. The country’s Regional Democratic Councils and Neighborhood Democratic Councils have limited authority and resources to implement initiatives and plans at a sub-national level. There is also a need for greater stakeholder involvement in disaster management and climate adaptation decision-making implementation, including increased access to climate-related information by indigenous groups, and increased participation of women in decision-making. There must be additional staff in forecasting services which is currently overstretched. Finally, Guyana struggles from limited financial resources and high reliance on external funding and aid, with little capacity for implementation, although the nascent oil and gas industry may increase the government’s opportunity to fund resilience initiatives, but that is not yet evidenced.