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Trump’s Decision Will Threaten People in Pacific Islands: Group

Pacific island countries yesterday rallied behind Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama after Donald Trump announced he was pulling the US out from climate talks. The Pacific Islands Climate Action Network said
03 Jun 2017 11:00
Trump’s Decision Will Threaten People in Pacific Islands: Group

Pacific island countries yesterday rallied behind Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama after Donald Trump announced he was pulling the US out from climate talks.

The Pacific Islands Climate Action Network said Mr Trump’s decision signalled his support for the fossil fuel industry which directly threatened people living in the Pacific Islands, says Radio NZ.

The grouping called for Australia to immediately reaffirm its commitments around the deal which for the first time united most of the world in a single agreement to mitigate climate change.

Mr Trump has confirmed he will withdraw the US from the Paris climate change agreement

Co-ordinator of the Pacific Islands Climate Action Network Krishneil Narayan said not even Mr Trump could derail action on climate change.

“Certainly we are really angered by the announcement. The United States is one of the largest carbon polluting countries. We here in the Pacific island countries are really going to double our action to help with ensuring that the world is going to support the Paris agreement and implement climate action,” said Krishneil Narayan.

Mr Narayan said Fiji’s presidency of UN climate change talks this year was a great opportunity to ensure this.

The network has rallied behind Fijian Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama, COP23 president. Mr Bainimarama said he was disappointed with Mr Trump’s decision.

Hilda Heine, President of the Marshall Islands said: “Today’s decision is not only disappointing, but also highly concerning for those of us that live on the frontline of climate change. As one of the United States’ closest friends and strongest allies we have long believed in the importance of US global leadership.”

The Prime Minister of Tuvalu, Enele Sopoaga says, the US withdrawal from a landmark global climate change deal is distressing, destructive and will affect relations between the two countries.

Tuvalu has been suffering changing weather patterns, coastal erosion and salt water inundation as a result of climate change and Mr Sopoaga has been among Pacific island leaders speaking out internationally.

Malcolm Turnbull, Australia Prime Minister, says the US decision to pull out of the Paris climate agreement is not surprising but is disappointing.

“We would prefer the United States to remain part of the agreement,” Mr Turnbull told reporters in Singapore.

New Zealand has reaffirmed its commitment to the Paris Agreement.

“It is really disappointing the US has chosen to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, but New Zealand remains absolutely committed to it,” Climate Change minister Paula Bennett said.

Speaking to Newstalk ZB, she said she fundamentally disagreed with Trump’s main reason for exiting the accord.

World Wildlife Fund’s  global Climate and Energy Practice leader Manuel Pulgar-Vidal said: “The Paris Agreement is the world’s collective response to tackling climate change. But the transformative power of the Paris Agreement lies in the targets that it triggers, and nations must hold each other accountable for their promises.

“A race to the bottom when it comes to our efforts to cut carbon pollution benefits no one as climate change affects everyone.

Carter Roberts, president and chief executive officer of World Wildlife Fund-US said: “The Paris Agreement emerged as nations put aside politics to collectively reverse course on this threat to our way of life. The US helped lead that charge.

“Honoring our commitments and delivering on our promises have been hallmarks of US domestic and international policy.”

Feedback:  nemani.delaibatiki@fijisun.com.fj

 

 



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