Pacific leaders say climate will claim entire nations

Koror - Pacific leaders warned on Thursday that entire island nations will disappear under the waves unless action is taken to address climate change.

The Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) wrapped up its annual meeting in Palau with a call to action on the issue of global warming, with the 15-nation regional grouping saying there was no excuse not to act to curb climate change.

"We all know the causes of climate change, we know the solutions," Samoa Prime Minister Sailele Malielegaoi told reporters after releasing a communique from the three-day meeting.

"All that is left is decisive action from leaders with the courage to do what needs to be done to save the world."

Malielegaoi said Pacific island nations, some of which are barely one metre above sea level, were at the forefront of the climate change issue because it was a matter of survival for them.

"The reason for the very strong stance put forward by Pacific island countries is that we are the most vulnerable. Many of our states will disappear under the ocean if climate change is allowed to continue."


The Forum also demanded an end to overfishing in the Pacific, largely by "distant water" fleets from as far afield as Europe. saying sustainable development was needed in the world's largest ocean.

"Leaders note with concern the rapid decline of tuna stocks and... (want to) urgently strengthen sustainable fisheries and management plans," the communique said.

The Pacific tuna industry is worth about $4.0 billion a year annually but relatively little of the money trickles back to Forum countries.

Scientists say tuna stocks are dwindling quickly, with the southern bluefin variety down an estimated 96% after decades of overfishing.

The Forum announced it had appointed its first ever female Secretary General, with lawyer and diplomat Meg Taylor of Papua New Guinea taking over from Samoa's Neroni Slade.

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John Greystoke 2014-08-01 12:45:33 AM
Climate change is not 'allowed' to continue, it is a natural thing that is happening. We can't cause it or stop it. Islands come and islands go.
Anthony De Lucchi 2014-08-01 04:13:10 PM me one, just 1 island that has dissapeared under the waves in the last 9 000 or so years, I am not talking about erosion.....and if I follow all these “studies” by groups and various academics, earth has had quite a few climatic turnabouts, and this was all before our so-called carbon footprint. The methane gas deposits in Siberia are escaping into the atmoshere at an alarming rate and the experts are not entirely sure what is causing it, the increased volcanic activity has poured untold amounts of carbon and other gases plus dust into the upper atmosphere which is known to affect climatic conditions of the planet, but lets make money and open conventions and blame somebody, as I have said before between 1930 and 1970 we were constantly warned of the coming ice-age tell me what happened to that then. Methinks these scientists think too much!
John Greystoke 2014-08-02 09:07:57 AM
We are interpreting some 150 years of temperature measurements and apply that to a planet that reacts in thousands of years. Very scientific! Then we apply some 30 or 40 years of satellite measurements and we make conclusions from that. We in fact have 150 years VERY scanty evidence about a weather system that changes over tens of thousands of years from hot to cold and back with mini peaks in between and now we 'Know' it all! We are in fact smelling the exhaust gases from a car and now you know the make, engine size and the driver!