Blame Game Over: PM
The time for casting blame is over, says Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama.
He addressed fellow heads of states from the Pacific, civil society groups, and the diplomatic corps at the preparatory meeting in Suva for the United Nations Ocean Conference in New York in June. Fiji is co-hosting the conference with Sweden.
Mr Bainimarama called for a united front to make things happen.
“I will be the first to admit that I have railed against the developed economies for causing this crisis. And to be sure, it’s the developed economies that produce the most carbon emissions.
“But they are also responsible for most of the gains in technology, science, medicine and other fields that have improved the lives of all people—and the technology and learning we will need to solve this crisis. And it is also a fact that we have been striving to give our people a chance at that same standard of living.
“As developing countries have modernised and created a middle class, they have also contributed a share of emissions and waste to the environment.
“So we are all responsible in some way for the warming of the planet, and the time has come to pay the bill. We all must work together to deal with the consequences of modernity.”
He said there was a need for strengthening of “our moral authority and our political case by fully accepting our small share of the blame.”
“Every nation must do what it can. All people must do what they can,” he said.
Tozaka: Fresh perspective
The UN Ocean Conference is an opportunity for us to put in a fresh perspective on global ocean governance, says Milner Tozaka.
The Solomon Islands Minister for Foreign Affairs and External Trade Milner Tozaka said: “We are stewards of the largest ocean with a right to sustainably and equitably, benefit from its resources.
“In short, we need to approach the UN Conference on Ocean from a point of strength as opposed to expecting charity from the globe, we are co-owners of a bountiful resource base, this is our strength.”
Let’s show global leadership: O’Neill
Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neill urges leaders to continue to show global leadership on issues that matter the most to us.
“As we gather to prepare as a region united, for the first time ever, for the first UN Conference for the SDGs on SDG 114, I cannot help but feel the spirit and mana of our Pacific leaders and that of our ancestors who traversed the vast magnificent Pacific Ocean that is our home.
Nations assigned responsibility
Leading up to the United Nations Ocean Conference, each of the Pacific Island nations has been assigned an issue to prepare.
Cook Islands will present on Protection of Coastal and Marine Ecosystems. Kiribati and Nauru will focus on benefits to Small Island Developing States. Their focus would be on Goal 14.7 under the Sustainable Development Goal 14.
Papua New Guinea’s focus would be on fishing subsidies.
Edited by Naisa Koroi