Summit Endorses Suva Declaration

The third National Climate Change Summit which ended in Levuka last Thursday has endorsed the 2015 Pacific Island Development Forum Leaders’ position calling for a strong Paris agreement as laid
13 Sep 2015 09:50
Summit Endorses Suva Declaration
Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama with some of the participants of the 2015 National Climate Change Summit at Nasova, Levuka, last week. Photo: Luisa Qiolevu

The third National Climate Change Summit which ended in Levuka last Thursday has endorsed the 2015 Pacific Island Development Forum Leaders’ position calling for a strong Paris agreement as laid out in the Suva Declaration.

The Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama, will lead the charge in Paris during COP21 on behalf of small island developing nations against developed countries about their carbon emissions cut commitment.

The summit supported Mr Bainimarama’s opening remarks, for the need for all countries, especially rich industrial countries to help deliver a binding Paris agreement that is “fair, ambitious and binding.”

It also agreed that:

  • Loss and damage must be anchored in the Paris Agreement;
  • Fiji is to help build global momentum for an ambitious agreement;
  • There should be training of Fijian delegates attending the Paris conference to have a strong position on: Financing, Adaptation, Mitigation, Long-term temperature goals of 1.5 degrees;


The summit also noted the significant progress since the 2013 summit in Narewa Village, Nadi. The achievement includes:

  • Loss and damage must be anchored in the Paris Agreement;
  • Fiji Green Growth Framework Draft Climate Public Expenditure Institutional Review (CPEIR);
  • Works to improve Fiji’s Vulnerability and Adaptation Assessment (V&A) tool to inform priority risk areas and target resilience building programmes into the future;
  • Preparation of support options for the deployment of appropriate renewable energy sources for electricity generation;
  • The launch of Fiji’s forest programme on mitigation and adaption on ‘Reduction through Emissions from Deforestation and land Degradation (REDD+);
  • Pilot of a school resource on Disaster Risk Management and Climate Change Adaptation on traditional knowledge;
  • The translation of the policy into the iTaukei language.


Addressing the root causes of greenhouse gas emissions, the summit:

  • Acknowledged the REDD + efforts to reduce net-global carbon emissions as well as in encouraging forest conservation;
  • Welcomed Government initiatives to encourage investment in renewable energy production and other efforts to reduce energy use in the country;
  • Noted that the land transport sector is the largest contributor to Fiji’s annual carbon emission and deserves significant attention in the area of mitigation;
  • Called for the use of incentives and enabling policies coupled with matching infrastructure to encourage investment in energy sources, including explore “low technology” mitigation options such bicycle paths and walkways;
  • Called for continued collaboration and partnerships between the private and public sector as a way of providing direct benefit to communities;
  • Need for co-ordination between National Disaster Risk Management Office (NDMO) and the Climate Change Division (CCD), and the need for National Planning Office to assist in this co-ordination;
  • Called for closer working collaboration between the NDMO, CCD and National Planning Office.
  • Acknowledged the need for closer collaboration between offices.
  • Agreed that greater transparency, co-operation and inter-organisational co-ordination is needed to ensure the best possible use and access to international public and private funds.
  • Acknowledged the unpredictability of long-term impacts of climate change, noting that this would determine the viability and development of critical infrastructure.
  • Noted that not all adaptation measures require significant financing, small projects with the inclusion of traditional knowledge can leverage the benefits of locally appropriate technologies which can be sustainable.
  • Called for greater capacity awareness raising and training on the financial facilities that exists and how best to access and utilise them.
  • Acknowledged the impact of climate change on food security and livelihoods, and the need to safeguard inshore and offshore fisheries, agricultural practices and the use of traditional knowledge.
  • Noted the need to strengthen governance and the urgency for a co-ordinated standard resource mobilisation strategy that is accessible to all CSOs, including formal and informal communities.
  • Reaffirmed the value of traditional knowledge and spiritual wisdom in encouraging sustainable lifestyles and philosophies and welcomed initiatives to revive and preserve this knowledge through practice (eg. tabu areas, agricultural practices, food preservation).



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