Jun 7, 2017

Vanuatu reaffirms climate change stand after withdrawal by US

written by Tina Baumgartner
in category Uncategorized, Vanuatu

The Government of Vanuatu has welcomed the statements of many world leaders, reaffirming their commitment to the Paris Agreement.

In a statement issued yesterday, the Minister of Climate Change Adaptation, Meteorology and Geo-hazards, Environment, Energy and Disaster Management, Ham Lini, said that the withdrawal of the United States of America was a disappointing step backwards from the hard-won ambition and solidarity that the Paris Agreement represents.

“Even so, the Government of Vanuatu believes our collective progress on climate change is irreversible, and that it is the United States that stands to lose from this decision,” he said.

“While the Trump Administration has this morning demonstrated an allegiance to a dying fossil fuel industry, the rest of the world will continue to move forward on ambitious climate action, toward a sustainable and just future for all.

Minister Lini said that Vanuatu, alongside its Pacific neighbours and vulnerable nations across the globe, stands ready to play their part in this historic transition.

“Vanuatu is a small island developing nation in the South Pacific, consistently ranked by the United Nations as the world’s most vulnerable country to natural disasters and hazards,” he said.

“The impacts of climate change threaten subsistence farming, vital reef ecosystems and the achievement of our sustainable development goals-in 2017 alone, Vanuatu has experienced Cyclone Donna — the most powerful out-of-season cyclone on record — and is now preparing for the impacts of another devastating El Niño event.”

Minister Lini said that in the face of these extreme vulnerabilities, Vanuatu has chosen to fight for its future, against the vested interests of companies and countries with capital and size much greater than its own.

“Today, as every other day, Vanuatu continues to stand shoulder to shoulder with its allies around the world, moving toward a just climate future.”

By Fern Napwatt for Vanuatu Daily Post, 7 June 2017