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This is our Environmental Crusade – PM at PIDF

17:55 Tue Jul 12, 2016

Taken from/By: FBC News
Report by: Maggie Boyle

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama is calling on Pacific Islands Development forum member states to recognise the importance of the environmental crusade before us.

While delivering his pre-summit address at the PIDF forum in the Solomon Islands, Bainimarama says Fiji and the rest of the region are already experiencing the effects of climate change.

With the theme, Stewardship for Healthy Oceans and Healthy nations, the Prime Minister noted that the pain of global warming was already been felt across the Pacific.

In Fiji he said, we have accelerated plans to relocate some forty coastal villages to higher ground and it was recently reported that the disappearance of five islands, right here in the Solomons is directly linked to rising sea levels and erosion caused by climate change.

Bainimarama talked about the recent cyclone in Fiji and how this was a preview of a grim future if no action is taken to address fast deteriorating climate conditions in our Pacific Island Nations.

In a wide ranging speech, he touched on unsustainable fishing and how this can be stopped with a collective commitment to educate our citizens on responsible practices as well as the giant corporations that squeeze the life out of our waters.

The PM also talked about rubbish and plastic waste disposal and its effect on our oceans.

A recent study by researchers from Spain and Australia found that at least 88 percent of Earth’s ocean surface is polluted with plastic debris, he said.

Bainimarama than called on participants to work together.

The work we will have done so far, the commitments we have made, and the selflessness with which we have taken on this challenge in our corner of the world give us the moral authority to speak out loud and clear and to claim our rightful leadership role in this environmental crusade he said.

The two day forum will end tomorrow with a Leaders Summit in which the Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manesseh Sogavare will be handed the PIDF chairmanship.

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