31 October 2018, Nadi, Fiji - The Pacific islands are strategising a way forward for enhanced engagement at the UN Climate Change Conference in Poland (COP24) this December, the most important session in international climate change negotiations since the Paris Agreement was adopted in 2015.
The IMPACT Pacific Small Islands Developing States Climate Change Ministers and Negotiators COP 24 Preparatory Meeting and Training began today, a partnership between Climate Analytics, the Government of Fiji as the United Nations Framework Convention to Climate Change Twenty-Third Conference of the Parties Presidency and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP).
COP24 is the Twenty Fourth Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC to be held in Katowice, Poland from 2 - 14 November, 2018.
Opening the meeting, Hon. Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, the Minister for Defence and National Security of Fiji stressed the urgency for ambitious action, given the findings of the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change Special Report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius.
“The 1.5 Degree Special Report is sobering in that carbon dioxide emissions must reach net-zero by 2050 in order to keep global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius. Sadly in 2017 alone, countries emitted over 32 billion metric tonnes of carbon dioxide,” said Hon Ratu Inoke Kubuabola.
“If we fail to meet these goals and the earth warms by 2 degrees Celsuis, hundreds of millions of lives will be at stake.”
Pacific Islands Leaders have stated that Climate Change is the “Single greatest threat to the livelihoods, security, and wellbeing of the peoples of the Pacific”.
Over the course of the four days, the Pacific are strategising for strong engagement at COP24, critical for ensuring Pacific voices and priorities are heard and reflected in the outcomes in Poland.
“The challenge ahead of us now at COP24 is to pick up the momentum created by the IPCC report and drive a process forward to 2020 that creates a global ‘moment in time’ where many come forward with increased ambition,” presented Dr Bill Hare of Climate Analytics at the opening of the meeting.
The Pacific region unites with other small island parties to the UNFCCC, negotiating under the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS). This week will help the Pacific region prepare by providing them updates on the development of the climate change negotiations to forge a way forward for the region, helping to equip and strengthen the Pacific Ministers and high level officials.
“This year marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of SPREP and whilst it is a reminder of how long the journey has been, it is also obvious the Pacific has developed strong capacity in climate change negotiations and issues pertaining to climate change,” said Ms Tagaloa Cooper, Director of Climate Change Resilience, SPREP.
“We take our lead from you as the experts in your national positions and priorities and the One Council of the Regional Organisations of the Pacific-Plus team stand ready to support you.”
The IMPACT Pacific SIDS Climate Change Ministers and Negotiators COP24 Preparatory Meeting and Training is held from 31 October to 3 November in Nadi, Fiji.
For further information please contact Mr Patrick Pringle at [email protected]