Help from Australia on climate change

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Wong and PM Sogavare pose for a photo at the Cabinet conference room
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By EDDIE OSIFELO

SOLOMON Islands is getting a positive message from the new Australian Labor government to help tackle climate change here and in the Pacific.

Most countries in the Pacific including Solomon Islands are vulnerable to climate change like natural disasters, high sea level rise, cyclones and other hazards.

Australian Foreign Minister, Penny Wong told media at Honiara International Airport before her departure to Adelaide last Friday, they are committed to reach 43 percent by 2030 and plan to host a United Nations Climate conference with the Pacific Islands nations.

“When we elected as a Labor government with very strong position in climate change.

“Prime Minister Albanese was the person when we were in Opposition who drafted our policy for government,” she said.

“So, you have the Prime Minister of Australia and Foreign Minister who both have a personal commitment on actions on climate.

“But more importantly you see in the elections, the election of the government and Parliament where Australians do want stronger actions on climate,” Senator Wong, who was the former Climate Change minister from 2007 to 2010 said.

She said not only have they contribute to the net zero by 2050.

“We have a commitment for 2030 by 43 percent reduction.

“That would lead to in terms of renewable energy, that is 82 percent of our energy being renewable being provided from renewable energy sources. So, we are serious about this,” she added.

Furthermore, Senator Wong said other thing she want to talk with Pacific Islands countries is stronger engagement potentially holding Conference of the Parties to try and press issues.

“When I was Climate Minister and still today, I think the voices of smaller island nations have been powerful and authentic in the UN negotiations,” she added.

The Guardian reported that regional leaders have called on Australia to go further by taking steps such as committing to allow no new coal and gas projects and to curb fossil fuel exports – steps which Labor has not adopted.


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