by Juanita Nonwo – EM TV Online
Pacific island countries are preparing for the region’s biggest forum come September; the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF), which will be held in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.
Officials from all over the Pacific will be meeting in Suva, Fiji, during this week to list the agendas for the PIF meeting; as well as constructing a unified political statement that would represent the Pacific’s stand on climate change as the biggest threat to the the livelihoods, security and well-being of the people of the Pacific.
This political statement will be inclusive of various key demands of island nations presented to the United Nations’ global climate change conference which will be held in Paris in December.
“2015 is a critical moment in history for Pacific island countries. Island leaders are at the forefront of a global movement for greater action to tackle climate change. Noting the urgency to act and the significant threat posed by climate change to vulnerable Forum Island Countries (FICs) and in light of recent disasters that have affected the region, which are exacerbated by climate change, there is need for the region to have a co-ordinated and collective voice in Paris during COP21” stated the Convenor of the Pacific Islands Climate Action Network (PICAN), Shirley Laban.
A report from the Specialist Sub-Committee on Regionalism (SSCR), stated that the challenges faced by vulnerable FICs must be made known to the world in Paris through a strong and united Pacific voice.
The main points that will be presented at the climate change negotiation include:
- Seeking to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels.
- Seeking commitments for new and additional financing for climate change adaptation in vulnerable countries.
- Demanding a mechanism to compensate vulnerable countries for permanent loss and damage arising from a changing climate.
The SSCR has also recommended for the island leaders to include climate change and disaster risk management as one of the 5 agendas to be discussed during the Port Moresby’s PIF meeting.