PM Sopoaga gives these powerful words to earth’s first-world countries
BY CHARLES KADAMANA
In Funafuti, Tuvalu
THERE is no safe place in the world due to climate change and Tuvalu will not be taking any option of relocation.
Relocation is a cheap option that could be seen as an achieved option for those causing the global warming and climate change.
This is the response of Tuvaluan Prime Minister Enele Sopoaga when asked if relocation would one of the actions to save Tuvalu.
He said Tuvalu has been trying to build a ‘trust’ not to give up but work to do something to save the small island.
He said relocation is fine but that would be an achieved option for those who cause global warming and climate change.
“It would be easy for them to pass resolution in the UN saying they have resolved to relocate the small island states to look for money and relocate to somewhere safe.
“But there is nowhere safe in the world because of climate change,” Mr Sopoaga said.
He said even in the United States and European countries they are relocating due to land erosion, but for them [Tuvalu] they are not moving.
“We will not stop the cause of climate change, we are going to stay.”
He said Tuvalu hosting the Pacific Islands Forum Leaders is a testimony that “if everyone put together they can save the world by raising, building and reclaiming lands”.
Sopoaga appreciates the offer by Fiji for relocation, but as matter of principles they are not going there.
“We have to do it but make sure the world fixed to contribute to reducing greenhouse effects.”
He also told the Pacific leaders in his address that the Pacific is facing a climate change crisis that needs urgent action to guarantee the future of the small developing island states.
“Our survival is at stake and there is no time to waste.
“We must be decisive in our actions not only ambitions. May be time for ambitions is over but actions.
“This is time for actions. Why? Because the stake is so high for the livelihood of the people in all our islands who anxiously waiting to hear our leaders what we are going to decide here.”
He also highlights the importance of listening to the voice of youths.
This is because the decision they [leaders] made at the meeting will affect young people in ways that they now may not be able to make.
Pacific Island countries is often portrayed as hapless victims of climate change but they have been at the leading edge of action to confront climate change.
The region is determined to take charge of its future and show the rest of the world what real climate leadership looks like from skillful international diplomacy to world leading policies and commitments at the regional level to local community driven action built upon millennia’s worth of indigenous knowledge.