Wednesday, December 23, 2009

[pima.nius] Re: Lack of diversity in New Zealand newsrooms debated

6:41 PM |

Too right you know it is them. They are out there. They are even
watching right now.

On Dec 23, 9:45 pm, Bruce Hill <pacificjournal...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Yes, everything that's gone wrong in your life is Some Else's Fault Panther.
>
> It's Them!
>
> You know - Them...from There!
>
> Life must be wonderful when anything you don't like is caused by a sinister,
> globe-spanning conspiracy
>
> By the way, kudos on the desperate segue from ethnic diversity in New
> Zealand newsrooms to full-blown 9/11 Trutherism, really a most impressive
> effort.
>
> Few others would have made such an attempt, and there's a reason for that.
> 2009/12/23 panther <peterpanthe...@hotmail.com>> Lack of Diversity in New Zealand news rooms debated. It seems apparent
> > to many people these days, that a few individual corrupt people high
> > up in the system are somehow managing to pervert the course of
> > balanced truthful media coverage. Who are these moles?
> > Their main agenda is to create a fascist capitalistic monoculture.
> > Their power over governments has been fuelled by money from oil.
> > Unfortunately for these megalomaniacs, their oil and money is soon to
> > run out. When this happens, hopefully their arms manufacturing
> > companies will turn to the manufacture of renewable energy
> > infrastructure and the world will return to a truly democratic society
> > where diversity is welcomed.
>
> > If one is sceptical as to the power these people have over the media,
> > then why was the following paper been kept out of the media? This
> > bombshell of a paper should have been front page headlines, but
> > Fairfax and Murdoch media groups seem to be in on the coverup.
>
> > Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade
> > Center Catastrophe
> > The Open Chemical Physics Journal. Bentham.org. Vol 2. 2009. pp.7-31
> > (25)
> > Authors: Niels H. Harrit, Jeffrey Farrer, Steven E. Jones, Kevin R.
> > Ryan, Frank M. Legge,
> > Daniel Farnsworth, Gregg Roberts, James R. Gourley, Bradley R. Larsen
>
> > So what else are they failing to report?
> > It is up to the people to demand truth. Apathy is rife in todays
> > psych. Wake up people!
>
> > --
> > ----------------------------------------
> > pacific islands media association
> > pima.n...@gmail.com
> > aotearoa, new zealand
> > ----------------------------------------
> > The pima.nius googlegroup is a facility for discussion and distributing
> > information. Content sent by this googlegroup are forwarded from various
> > networks and media publications.
>
> > DISCLAIMER: These emails are unedited and discussions made through this
> > googlegroup are unmoderated. Announcements made through this googlegroup do
> > not constitute endorsement for the organisations, individuals or opinions
> > featured. Please check the integrity of organisations and individuals before
> > exchanging personal information with them.
>
> > - - - - - - - - -
> > comment here:
> >http://groups.google.com/group/pima-nius/topics?hl=en
>
> > send an email comment here:
> > pima-nius@googlegroups.com
>
> > unsubscribe:
> > pima-nius+unsubscribe@googlegroups.com<pima-nius%2Bunsubscribe@googlegroups.com>
>
> > more options
> >http://groups.google.com/group/pima-nius?hl=en?hl=en
>
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Re: [pima.nius] Re: Lack of diversity in New Zealand newsrooms debated

12:45 AM |

Yes, everything that's gone wrong in your life is Some Else's Fault Panther.
 
It's Them!
 
You know - Them...from There!
 
Life must be wonderful when anything you don't like is caused by a sinister, globe-spanning conspiracy

By the way, kudos on the desperate segue from ethnic diversity in New Zealand newsrooms to full-blown 9/11 Trutherism, really a most impressive effort.
 
Few others would have made such an attempt, and there's a reason for that.
2009/12/23 panther <peterpanther08@hotmail.com>
Lack of Diversity in New Zealand news rooms debated. It seems apparent
to many people these days, that a few individual corrupt people high
up in the system are somehow managing to pervert the course of
balanced truthful media coverage. Who are these moles?
Their main agenda is to create a fascist capitalistic monoculture.
Their power over governments has been fuelled by money from oil.
Unfortunately for these megalomaniacs, their oil and money is soon to
run out. When this happens, hopefully their arms manufacturing
companies will turn to the manufacture of renewable energy
infrastructure and the world will return to a truly democratic society
where diversity is welcomed.

If one is sceptical as to the power these people have over the media,
then why was the following paper been kept out of the media? This
bombshell of a paper should have been front page headlines, but
Fairfax and Murdoch media groups seem to be in on the coverup.

Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade
Center Catastrophe
The Open Chemical Physics Journal. Bentham.org. Vol 2. 2009. pp.7-31
(25)
Authors: Niels H. Harrit, Jeffrey Farrer, Steven E. Jones, Kevin R.
Ryan, Frank M. Legge,
Daniel Farnsworth, Gregg Roberts, James R. Gourley, Bradley R. Larsen

So what else are they failing to report?
It is up to the people to demand truth. Apathy is rife in todays
psych. Wake up people!

--
----------------------------------------
pacific islands media association
pima.nius@gmail.com
aotearoa, new zealand
----------------------------------------
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aotearoa, new zealand
----------------------------------------
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[pima.nius] Re: Lack of diversity in New Zealand newsrooms debated

12:33 AM |

Lack of Diversity in New Zealand news rooms debated. It seems apparent
to many people these days, that a few individual corrupt people high
up in the system are somehow managing to pervert the course of
balanced truthful media coverage. Who are these moles?
Their main agenda is to create a fascist capitalistic monoculture.
Their power over governments has been fuelled by money from oil.
Unfortunately for these megalomaniacs, their oil and money is soon to
run out. When this happens, hopefully their arms manufacturing
companies will turn to the manufacture of renewable energy
infrastructure and the world will return to a truly democratic society
where diversity is welcomed.

If one is sceptical as to the power these people have over the media,
then why was the following paper been kept out of the media? This
bombshell of a paper should have been front page headlines, but
Fairfax and Murdoch media groups seem to be in on the coverup.

Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade
Center Catastrophe
The Open Chemical Physics Journal. Bentham.org. Vol 2. 2009. pp.7-31
(25)
Authors: Niels H. Harrit, Jeffrey Farrer, Steven E. Jones, Kevin R.
Ryan, Frank M. Legge,
Daniel Farnsworth, Gregg Roberts, James R. Gourley, Bradley R. Larsen

So what else are they failing to report?
It is up to the people to demand truth. Apathy is rife in todays
psych. Wake up people!

--
----------------------------------------
pacific islands media association
pima.nius@gmail.com
aotearoa, new zealand
----------------------------------------
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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

[pima.nius] PR: Calls Made For A Human Rights Commission

1:23 PM |


Pacific: Calls Made For A Human Rights Commission

Press Release – Secretariat of the Pacific Community

18 December 2009, Secretariat of the Pacific Community, Suva – Regional parliamentarians meeting in Brisbane have called for a regional human rights mechanism to facilitate handling the increasing number of inter-jurisdictional human rights issues such as …Pacific Parliamentarians Call For A Regional Human Rights Commission

18 December 2009, Secretariat of the Pacific Community, Suva – Regional parliamentarians meeting in Brisbane have called for a regional human rights mechanism to facilitate handling the increasing number of inter-jurisdictional human rights issues such as the effects of climate change and migrant workers.

The MPs from 11 countries around the Pacific are meeting to discuss human rights issues in the Pacific including violence against women, HIV, human rights and the law, human rights perspectives on climate change and human rights mechanisms.

This issue was raised previously in recommendations made by Pacific Island MPs at human rights consultations in Auckland in November 2007 and December 2008, as well as at a regional meeting of judges and magistrates in December 2007 in Brisbane.

The European, American, African and Arab regions have well-established regional human rights commissions with varying levels of authority to promote the concept of human rights and in some regions to adjudicate on human rights issues between countries and between citizens and countries.

In 2007 the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries agreed to set up an Asian regional human rights commission, a concept that had been under consideration for several years. This means that the Pacific will soon be the only region globally without one.

A regional human rights commission could facilitate rights specific to circumstances in the Pacific region while at the same time conforming to international human rights standards set out in UN human rights instruments. The African Human Rights Charter significantly guarantees all 'peoples' the right to a 'general satisfactory environment favourable to their development'. The San Salvador Protocol to the American Convention on Human Rights guarantees the right to a healthy environment and requires member states to 'promote the protection, preservation and improvement' of the environment. A similar mechanism in the Pacific would facilitate common Pacific human rights issues.

A Pacific regional human rights commission would complement current judicial systems as well as the development of harmonised human rights law between Pacific countries. It would also assist in the set-up of national commissions and complement their work.

Cook Islands MP Nandi Glassie expressed that some countries lack the resources and capacity to effectively run national human rights institutions. He asked: 'Would a regional human rights mechanism be the way for these nations to go?' Given the small size of most Pacific countries, there would be greater likelihood of independence from government with a regional commission than with a national commission. A regional human rights commission would not exclude the establishment of national human rights institutions. In the Americas, the regional human rights commission played a major role in the consequent establishment of national human rights institutions in countries party to the Inter-American Human Rights Commission.

A regional commission would also assist Pacific countries in reporting to various UN bodies on its human rights accountability before the treaty bodies and the Universal Periodic Review. It would promote and protect human rights standards in the region. It could also promote the rights of Pacific Islanders as a group.

The meeting of regional MPs is organised and hosted by the Regional Rights Resource Team (RRRT) at the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC). RRRT provides human rights training, technical support, and policy and advocacy services tailored specifically for the Pacific region. RRRT is an SPC programme under the Social Resources Division.

ENDS

Content Sourced from scoop.co.nz [1]
Original url [2]

Article printed from Pacific.scoop.co.nz: http://pacific.scoop.co.nz

URL to article: http://pacific.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/pacific-calls-made-for-a-human-rights-commission/

URLs in this post:

[1] scoop.co.nz: http://www.scoop.co.nz/

[2] Original url: http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00568.htm

Copyright © 2009 pacific. All rights reserved.

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[pima.nius] Lack of diversity in New Zealand newsrooms debated

1:18 PM |



Lack of diversity in New Zealand newsrooms debated



Pacific Scoop
Thakur Ranjit Singh, Pacific Media Centre.

An interactive forum organised by the Office of Ethnic Affairs, among other things, discussed the lack of diversity in New Zealand newsrooms. The Ethnic Media Workshop held at Alexander Park in Greenlane last week heard some distinguished speakers.

Former New Zealand Herald editor-in-chief Gavin Ellis explained why it was important to separate news and views, and how to protect facts in a world increasingly driven by opinion. Dominic Sheehan, Chief Executive, Broadcasting Standards Authority and Clive Lind, member NZ Press Council explained why a journalist needed to know about media and broadcasting standards in NZ.

Clive Lind who is also the Editorial Development Manager of Fairfax New Zealand Ltd told his mostly ethnic audience how the opportunities for internship could be accessed by Ethnic media students and journalists. He said that Fairfax had started an internship scheme in 2006 and this has given a break to people seeking a career in journalism. However, the opportunities were open to all and were not based on ethnicity. This led to discussion on the contentious issue of diversity in media. On question from one participant about the lack of colour and opportunity in New Zealand newsrooms, Lind agreed that the media should reflect the demographic make up of the country. He said in New Zealand, many media training institutions had largely Pakeha population. Perhaps greater diversity in this respect may encourage ethnic communities to show greater interest in media industry and media studies. He agreed that while some media organisations reflected some diversity, there were many other where a change was required and which would be desirable.

The forum heard from one recently graduated ethnic graduate of Communication Studies from a reputable University about his difficulties in getting employment in media industry, despite the claim by the industry that they were not getting applications from the ethnic communities. One participant raised another sensitive issue about the practice of racism in selection process where the job recruiters in the media industry were all Pakeha, especially in the mainstream media and they still appeared to harbour prejudices against the minorities. It was heard that such practices failed to make the New Zealand media industry as diverse as its population make-up and hence also resulted in stereotypes projected by the mostly Pakeha journalists when reporting on ethnic communities or on the Pacific.

It was suggested that perhaps Fairfax, together with the input and assistance from the Office of Ethnic Affairs could set up an ethnic media committee or a council or a forum where such issues could be discussed and where ethnic students may get better access to the mainstream newsrooms to project the true colour of New Zealand.

After the presentations and lunch, the participants were taken on tour of Maori Television Station and Newstalk ZB radio station in Auckland. The coordinator of the forum, Bernard Gomes, Senior Ethnic Affairs Advisor from the Office of Ethnic Affairs said that the ethnic participants very much appreciated this opportunity of seeing first hand how a busy newsroom operated in a TV and radio station respectively. He said that the reaction from these newsrooms were also very positive as it raised ethnic diversity profile of journalists. Seeing over twenty or so journalist from diverse community was a pleasant surprise for the media organisations and they discussed about further opportunities. Gomes said he received very positive feedback and the Office of Ethnic Affairs will continue in this area to raise awareness and develop interest of ethnic communities in the media industry and continue to provide platforms which promoted better networking and job opportunities for ethnic journalists.

Thakur Ranjit Singh is a postgraduate student in Communication Studies at AUT and a volunteer at AUT's Pacific Media Centre.



URL to article: http://pacific.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/lack-of-diversity-in-new-zealand-newsrooms-debated/


Copyright © 2009 pacific. All rights reserved.

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Monday, December 21, 2009

[pima.nius] Date 13 - COP 15 UNFCCC

12:25 PM |




Day 13 – COP 15 UNFCCC
Climate Pacific Team
Copenhagen, Denmark
18 December

http://climatepasifika.blogspot.com

•       Desperate negotiations to cut a climate deal before world leaders leave Copenhagen
•       Pacific Voices @ COP 15: SPREP's climate change adviser Espen Ronneberg on the eve of the final negotiations
•       Palau@COP 15: Protect the weakest and most vulnerable among us
•       Pacific Voices @ COP15: Waiting on an outcome, the evening of the last day of COP 15 negotiations
•       Leaked document alludes to no concrete financial commitments
•       Night in the Bella Center
•       Obama media feeding frenzy gets ridiculous at COP15
•       World leaders force a political outcome, breaks deadlock
•       COP15 confusion a COP-out, says activist
•       SPREP Director on SIDS Dock
•       Leaked UN report shows cuts offered at Copenhagen would lead to 3 degrees rise
•       Solomon Islands signs up to SPREP clean energy deal
•       SIDS Dock Launch
•       Small Islands Launch Energy Initiative to Reduce Emissions and Pursue Low Carbon Development
•       Fiji@COP15: Act now to save our countries, mankind and our planet
•       Papua New Guinea@COP15: Environmental Revolution
•       Samoan Minister fears malaria from climate change
•       Soundbites@COP15: Tuvalu Prime Minister Apisai Ielemia
•       Soundbites@COP15 - Dr Graham Sem, PNG
•       No U.S pressure on AOSIS, Ambassador Williams
•       INsideINsights@COP15 -- Lisa Williams-Lahari, Cook Islands
•       D-day: Leaders can still save Copenhagen, says WWF


Desperate negotiations to cut a climate deal before world leaders leave Copenhagen
Makereta Komai, PACNEWS, Climate Pasifika

Copenhagen, 18 December - With no imminent agreement in place as planned for Friday evening, meetings continued late into the night as negotiators desperately work to cut a deal to be signed by their leaders before they leave Copenhagen.  And the United Nations is reported to have asked world leaders to stay overnight, in anticipation of a likely agreement to be finalised Friday night.

"The secretary-general of the UN has asked people not to leave tonight," European Union Environment Commissioner Stavros Dima told Reuters.  He said he was confident that leaders would eventually reach a deal.

"I cannot imagine 120 leaders going back to their countries with empty hands. Everyone expressed commitment to fight climate change. OK, do it," he said.

A number of Pacific Island leaders have remained in the Danish city in the hope that they will leave Copenhagen with a deal in their favour.  A leading Pacific climate change negotiator, Ambassador Colin Beck of Solomon Islands said the Pacific, including the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) will not accept anything less than their 'minimum' position.

"As you know, our minimum position is to limit global temperature to well below 1.5 degrees and stabilise greenhouse gas concentration in the atmosphere to well below 350 part per million of carbon dioxide.  Global emissions should peak by no later than 2015 and to be reduced by 85 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.  Any outcome document or agreement that does not reflect that is an imposition of a death sentence on my people", said Ambassador Beck.

We will not accept anything less, and our leaders will not be party to an agreement that does not accept our position, he added.

As he prepared to sit it out with other Pacific negotiators for another night of marathon negotiations, he said, "We will fight until the end. This is not a question of how much money will be given by the developed and rich countries for adaptation and mitigation, but a matter of survival for our people.'

"There are certain elements in an agreement that can be negotiated. In our case, our 1.5 degrees to stay alive position is non-negotiable.  If not, then the world is signing the death certificate of vulnerable island states."

Since no concrete climate deal was negotiated in time for the world leaders, negotiators have now being pressured to deliver something before they leave Copenhagen."

Ambassador Beck said AOSIS countries were also disappointed with the approach taken by the Maldives, which is a member of the 43 member grouping.

"They seem to be taking an approach that runs counter to the AOSIS position.  They are part of the group of 24 countries that the President of the COP, the Danish Prime Minister conducted pre-COP consultations with."

Meanwhile, the so-called Copenhagen Accord that has emerged as the most likely text for the final outcome document has been rejected by a number of countries.

Venezuela's President Hugo Chávez criticised the UN climate conference for "a real lack of transparency", speaking on behalf of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas.  When he took the floor at the plenary, Friday afternoon, he accused US President Barack Obama of behaving like an emperor.

"He comes in the middle of the night … and cooks up a document, which we will not accept."

President Chávez said "all countries are equal".

He said the Bolivian Alliance group of nations will not accept a prepared text that is "slipped under the door" to be signed by others.

"We can't wait any longer, we are leaving … we are leaving, knowing that it wasn't possible getting a deal," he said.

Ambassador Beck said there's a real possibility that many countries will not sign on to the final document, if it doesn't meet their expectations.

Leaders of India, China, Brazil and South Africa met this morning to discuss their positions as emerging economies.

"We all agreed that whatever document that comes out of Copenhagen must be transparent and inclusive, said Shyam Saran, India's special climate change envoy.  He said, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Chinese counterpart, Premier Wen Jiabao expressed their disappointment that they were not consulted by the President of COP for a political decision to move the negotiations forward.

"The Chinese leader told us that he was not invited to the political consultations held by the Danish PM Friday. My Prime Minister was equally disappointed by the process, said Ambassador Saran.

"What we are now told is that a 3-4 page declaration reflecting what we have agreed from the two documents (AWG-LCA and AWG-KP) will form the basis of the outcome document.

He said the four emerging economies are united in their view that the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is not diluted, any post Copenhagen negotiations must be within the mandate of the Bali Plan  of Action and the Kyoto Protocol must be preserved.






Pacific Voices @ COP 15: SPREP's climate change adviser Espen Ronneberg on the eve of the final negotiations
Geoffrey Smith, Fiji TV, Climate Pasifika

Espen Ronneberg, SPREP's Climate Change Adviser

Transcript
Well, I have been, as I mentioned in earlier days I have been working with the adaptation group. We just completed a reading of the adaptation text that we have been working on since we came here, we managed to sort out a lot of issues that the other partners we've managed to get a lot of agreement in the text but we have still got to resolve a bunch of really important issues like the financing, the support that should be provided to developing countries, how it should be provided and what sort of functions we should assign to an international committee at the level of the COP to look into adaptation into the future so the paper that we've been working on, that's now going to be forwarded to the ministerial level.

We don't quite know what the process will be for handling the what we've been able to achieve, we don't know how they are going to resolve the outstanding issues where we couldn't agree so I'm really as much in the dark as everybody else as to how this will all end, but I have to say the pacific worked really hard in the adaptation working group and I think we managed to get a lot of good things in the final paper, the problem is that we now have just so many brackets remaining especially those relating to finance.

Well, the paper will be presented to the ministers and they will have to make some sort of decision on it whether they have a decision to continue work, that could be one option or perhaps they could resolve at the political level some of these issues that we at a technical level couldn't resolve.

So it remains to be seen how the evening progresses, we are not even sure if we at the technical level will be allowed into the room, this process has been really difficult in the last few days trying to understand how the work that we have been doing will fit in the final product, its been really difficult.

We stayed up all night, some of our colleagues had to sleep on the floor last night, its been really hard with the small team that we have to be able to cover the whole range of negotiations, its been really frustrating but we tried our best and I think we achieved some success but its the final product that will be the proof of our success.





Palau @ COP 15: Protect the weakest and most vulnerable among us
Mr. President, Mr. Secretary General, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am truly thankful for this opportunity to address the leaders of the Planet Earth.  I stand here by virtue of my status as a Head of State, but I address you as a Son of the Pacific Islands.

Mr. President,
Palau's legend teaches us that we spring from Mother Nature. And historically, we have shared a symbiotic relationship. But, as a result of abuse which mankind has committed against her, the capacity of Mother Nature for tolerance has been pushed to the breaking point. We now feel her wrath as she is rising to devour us.  She has gone from being our benefactor to our adversary in the form of climate change.  Now, we are engaged in an epic battle against climate change to save our planet and humanity.  Defeat is not an option.

Mr. President,
We are the ones who started this conflict with Nature, and we must bring an end to this conflict. To end this conflict, we need to work together to harness all our resources, creativity, and determination.  We need to move beyond distinctions of class, race, creed, ethnicity, national boundaries, and color – and together we must relearn to live in harmony with Nature.  The existential nature of our work requires that all inhabitants of our planet must work together, and in this context, we advocate on the inclusion of Taiwan in these discussions.

Mr. President,
Climate change is evidence of Mother Nature's desperation to be heard. I believe, if we listen carefully, we can hear in her voice the call for reconciliation; for, like a loving mother, she wants to bring us back to the right path. I'm afraid that if we don't heed her call, we may be doomed to eternal condemnation.

Mr. President,
Let us respond to Mother Nature's call by taking drastic action to minimize greenhouse gas emissions.  This includes moving from fossil fuels to renewable energy.  In this conflict, green energy is the antidote to the toxic effects of climate change.  I believe that Mother Nature is urging us to go green to save our planet and ourselves.

Mr. President,
We know the challenges facing mankind.  We need and must have a positive outcome from this historic meeting. I endorse the AOSIS position on climate change. It is a position that deserves to be adopted by this Conference. It will guarantee victory in this epic battle against climate change.  It will prove cost effective in the long run. To delay drastic action today will result in an exponentially greater cost, a cost which may prove prohibitively high.  The AOSIS position is the clear path to victory.

Mr. President,
Our first priority must be to protect the weakest and most vulnerable among us. And they include the low lying islands of Oceania, who are on the front line in the onslaught of climate change. The protection of the weakest and most vulnerable is a test of our humanity, courage and commitment to win our battle against climate change. To do this, we must all work together. To successfully protect the weakest and the most vulnerable necessarily assures us of the security of all. And, here I would like to ask our partners and our friends, and especially the industrialized nations, to come on board and to lead the battle against climate change. Fairness requires that more should be demanded from those nations which historically have contributed the most to climate change.

Mr. President,
I am an optimist and I believe that the human creativity and ingenuity which led to the industrial revolution should be refocused on the process to contain, and reverse the adverse effects of climate change. I believe that what men can do, men can undo.

Let us take prompt and remedial action by adopting a binding agreement here which will specify a strategy to effectively and immediately combat the adverse effects of climate change.  The future of mankind is in the balance. Time is of the essence and sometimes, defeat is just another word for too late.

This historic conference in Copenhagen should not be and must not be an exercise in futility.  Let us leave behind from this meeting a legacy of hope for the survival of our planet earth and the future generations of mankind.

Thank you.





Pacific Voices @ COP15: Waiting on an outcome, the evening of the last day of COP 15 negotiations
Geoffrey Smith, Fiji TV, Climate Pasifika - Copenhagen, 18 December
Transcripts
Ambassador Colin Beck, Solomon Islands
For the rest of the membership we are merely waiting.  Waiting in terms of discussing whatever the outcome within the context of our negotiating groups so definitely representatives of AOSIS within the group of 24 that is currently working on the text to report back to the group.  But I think interesting developments have occurred at the plenary this morning.  Two presidents more or less have rejected whatever the outcome of the 24 groups, what the friends of the chair are doing.  They were speaking on behalf of a number of countries as well. So it's giving a new dynamics, and I think we've always asked for a party driven process.  And for us it's really unfortunate that we've been left out of the whole process.

Georgina Makaa, Solomon Islands youth delegate
It's most likely that we wont achieve that we want, like from AOSIS we wanted a legally binding commitment.  I think the leaders should look down to us and see how we the AOSIS countries are suffering because our survival really depends on whatever the outcome from this meeting.

Christina Ora, Solomon Islands youth delegate

We the youths of the Pacific Islands, we all look up to them and definitely I must say a hundred percent, they have all let us down  I'm not only sad but pissed and angry, we need this deal - we don't want it, we need it.  It's our survival we are talking about here.  Please listen to us.  Even though we don't have a deal here this month or this year then there is a need for a deal in the future.

Dr. Al Binger - AOSIS
We won't take it. Personally my advice to the leaders would be - you're signing a suicide pact you're gonna kill your people.  It may be fast in some places and it may slow in others. You know, we did a study in the Caribbeans .. two degrees will guarantee us at least two degrees of seal level rise.  We did one study in the Caribbean, just the English speaking Caribbean and one meter of seal level rise, just infrastructure, 100 billion dollars.  No airports or ports, let alone if we start talking about settlements, agriculture and fresh water. So it's not a matter of whether we have room to maneuver. The room we had to maneuver was ten, twelve years ago.  We've wasted all of this time and now the clock is running out. We will be the last to walk.  Our point is, if we walk away, we live business as usual and business as usual is killing us. So nothing we will do is going to jeopardize our future by our own actions.





Leaked document alludes to no concrete financial commitments

Cherelle Jackson, Environment Weekly, Climate Pasifika

Copenhagen, 18 December - A leaked document outlining the proposed decision by the Conference of the Parties in Copenhagen makes no mention of any numbers in regards to finance of climate change adaptation and mitigation.  The document which is a draft version to be signed by those representing parties to the Kyoto Protocol specifies a limit to global emissions at 1.5 degrees proposes a Copenhagen Climate Fund to be established as a result of the meeting.

Titled the 'Copenhagen Accord' it states: "We decide that the Copenhagen Climate Fund shall be established as an operating entity of the financial mechanism of the Convention to support projects, programmes, policies and other activities in developing countries related to mitigation including REDD-plus, adaptation, capacity building, technology development and transfer."

This was the only mention of finance in the whole document.

But money matters have long been a point of argument at COP15, as developing countries, facing the imminent threat of sea level rise, droughts and extreme weather events, demand high compensation and assistance from developed nations at the conference.

The financing is intended to help poorer nations to build coastal protection, modify or shift crops threatened by drought, build water supplies and irrigation systems, preserve forests, improve health care to deal with diseases spread by warming, and move from fossil fuel to low-carbon energy systems, such as solar and wind power.

The Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) last week announced that the proposed US$10 billion dollar a year discussed amount falls short of a responsible number.

Dessima Williams, the Chair of the group said: "AOSIS outlines specific financing mechanisms in it's proposal to the Conference of the Parties. The document demands developed country Parties to provide new, additional and predictable financial resources to support enhanced action on mitigation and adaptation in all developing countries.  The provision of financial resources shall be guided by the principles of the Convention and the priorities of developing countries that are Party to this Protocol, especially particularly vulnerable developing countries."

On Thursday the US pledged $100 billion dollars to a fund to assist developing countries, but it came with heavy conditions, which include but not limited to certain commitments by China.

EU leaders ended a Brussels summit last week with a three-year deal to pay 7.2bn euros to help poorer nations cope with climate change.  But some say the sum offered by the EU is inadequate.  The 7.2bn euros is Europe's contribution to a proposed package of $10bn a year designed to help Africa, island nations and other vulnerable states cope with climate change from next January until 2012.

This however is not enough according to Williams who says an adequate amount should be at least $86 billion or as high as $250 billion dollars in three years.

"When we talk about adequate levels of financing think about the Philipines, think about the water loss in Kiribati, what will it cost to give people a guarantee of clean water in every country in the 21st century. Is it $1 billion dollars? No.

"So we are clear that the figures have to be raised and we welcome all the negotiators including EU for putting more ambitious figures on the table."

Other leaders have pledged numbers, but no deal has been made to make them obligated.  Britain has said it will contribute $1.3 billion over three years, and Sweden will give $1.2 billion.  The Dutch say they will contribute $442 million dollars over three years, and the Belgians $221 million.  But Europe, along with other rich countries, have a poor track record on meeting its commitments to climate finance.

With a few hours to go in negotiations, only time will tell if the developed countries will maintain their bad track record or not, because for now, the numbers are but empty promises until they sign a deal.




Night in the Bella Centre
Rachna Lal, USP Journalism, Climate Pasifika

Copenhagen 18 December - With negotiations reaching the final 24 hours, hundreds of delegates have had to spend nights here at the Bella Center due to meetings ending in the early hours of the next morning.

Several nights before that, negotiaters had been up in meetings the whole night and were rushing back to refresh then return, while others were entering the building to start meetings at 5am.

Diane McFadzien, the Policy Coordinator of WWF, slept at the conference venue after the negotiations ended at 4.30 am on Friday morning.  She said all the couches at the venue were filled with people sleeping on them and had to sleep on the floor.

"There must have been like more than 100 people who stayed back and many were here because they would have had to come back early before 8 a.m. the next morning anyway."

She indicated that the last metro train leaves at 4.30 a.m. and when they missed it, she and her colleague came back into the center and spent the night in one of the negotiations room.

 "We slept hidden behind tables so that no one would see us but in the morning we woke up with the sounds of a technician checking the microphones and when we were trying to quickly get up, he said it is all right and we could go back to sleep,"  McFadzien said.

After spending two full days in the conference venue, McFadzien is definitely looking forward to going back to her comfy bed.

"I feel so tired and I cannot wait to get out of this place," she added.

And who said those who get to travel across the world on meetings have all the fun!





Obama media feeding frenzy gets ridiculous at COP15
Friday 18 December 2009, COPENHAGEN --Media and press unable to get into the tightly restricted High Level Plenary session had to make do with jostling for space to film, of all things, a household-size HD TV screen (above). Those with wi-fi enabled laptops watched the US President present on their screens then rapidly dispersed after his closing remarks. Media and press still got a better deal than NGO's, who were barely visible inside the Bella Centre today but braved the chill and snow blasting through Copenhagen to make their anger known.--ENDS





World leaders force a political outcome, breaks deadlock
Makereta Komai, PACNEWS, Climate Pasifika

Copenhagen, 18 December - World leaders present in Copenhagen Friday, with the hope of signing a legally binding climate change deal, will have to settle for a political accord.  This was hinted by most of the leaders that took the podium at the High Level Segment today, including United States President, Barack Obama.

"After months of talk and two weeks of negotiations, I believe the pieces of that accord are now clear."

President Obama said, "This is not a perfect agreement and no country will get everything it wants.  The bottom line is – we can embrace this accord, take a substantial step forward and continue to refine and build on its foundation.

"We can do that and everyone who is in this room will be part of an historic endeavour – one that makes life better for our children and grandchildren", said Obama.

He refused to budge from his position saying the United States will continue to invest in renewable energy and pursue a clean energy economy.

"America is going to continue on this course of action no matter what happens here in Copenhagen.

For the United States there will be no change in position until all major economies put forward decisive national actions on emissions reductions and 'begin to turn the corner on climate change.'

"We have charted our course, we have made our commitments and we will do what we say", said Obama.

Three positions pushed by the Obama administration in the climate change talks are – major economies must put forward decisive national actions on emissions targets, a mechanism to review commitments and exchange of information in a transparent manner and a financing package for mitigation and adaptation.

US Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton Thursday announced a fast start funding of $10 billion for 2012 and the U.S will mobilise $100 billion in financing by 2020.

European Union President, Jose Manuel Barroso was less optimistic but hopes that COP16 in Mexico will 'progress discussions on transparency and internationalisation of actions' as provided for in the Bali Plan of Action.

"What remains in our sight is a critical milestone. It's now obvious that we cannot get everything that we hoped for."

Prime Minister Tilman Thomas of Grenada speaking on behalf of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) expressed the disappointment of the 43 member group saying whatever political outcome that will come out of Copenhagen is 'not under the mandate of the Bali Plan of Action.'

"It is not a legally binding outcome.

The response, so far for small island states is – the outcome document is 'inadequate.'  However, 'We hope the post Copenhagen period will be characterised by the full implementation of the political will shown here to save the planet."

"More efforts should be on getting the job done and not only get the talks done", said PM Thomas.

Appealing for conscience, common sense and compromise, UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon urged world leaders to 'seize the opportunity and prove their legacy to the world.'

"We are united in purpose. Now is the time for us to be united in action."

India, one of the more vocal major developing economies within the G77 group said while the accord 'falls short of expectations, it can be regarded as a significant milestone.'

"India supports calls for subsequent negotiations towards building a truly global and genuinely collaborative response to climate change being concluded in 2010."

The Indian Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh said all effort should now be diverted to continue post Copenhagen negotiations on the basis of the Bali mandate.





COP15 confusion a COP-out, says activist
Lisa Williams-Lahari, Climate Pacific media
Friday 18 December 2009,COPENHAGEN--When one delegate laughed to another "let  us pray" when sitting to lunch on day 12 of COP15,  it was not the food they were referring to. Process and rules of procedure for COP meetings have borne the brunt of frustrated groupings, particularly from developing country and small islands nations who are feeling marginalised and disowned by what they call a lack of transparency. Even the much awaited whistle stop visit by US President Obama, despite stopping traffic and stirring media and delegates into a frenzy, roused other world leaders wanting to vent as the reality of a political agreement rather than a legally binding outcome set in. We caught up with COP veteran, Cook Islander Diane McFadzien, who had spent her one hour of sleep in the last 30 hours or so, at the Bella Centre:
TRANSCRIPT: DMcF: I think there's a lot that can still be done but also at this stage of the process, we don't even know what we're really going to get at the end of today. We still have a lot of text that's still in draft form, or absolutely full of brackets. Theres almost every option on the table. The good the bad, it's just sad. I don't even know what we will end up with.
LWL: Is this the scenario you expected, even at its worst, before you came to COP15?
DMcF: No.
LWL: What did you expect?
DMcF: I think I expected things to be run a little bit more transparently. I think a lot of the problem why so many of us don't know really know what we're getting is at the moment there's a lot of rumours going around...LWL: In all the years you've been at COP and you've been at many, how does this one compare?
DMcF: It's the most confusing COP I've ever been to. It's a COP where nobody knows what is going on. It's my least enjoyable COP.
(on the question of whether the leaders should take a 2deg. or more deal or walk)
DmcF: I don't know what our leaders will do but personally I wouldn't sign a deal that was a suicide pact. I don't think that I would come here and represent my country and sign the dotted line on something that I knew would put my countrys' existence under threat. If I was a leader, l wouldn't do it.
LWL: As an NGO activist then, any last words, in the last hours?
DMcF: I have to keep thinking optimistically. People keep telling me deals can be made at the last minute behind closed doors. So I kind of hope that some of our leaders will hold on strong and push their way through. I don't know if it's possible but I just hope they will do something that will just make us proud.




SPREP Director on SIDS Dock
Geoffrey Smith, Fiji TV, Climate Pasifika

Copenhagen, December 18 - SIDS Dock is an innovative project jointly implemented in the AOSIS regions, the Caribbean, the Pacific and the Indian Ocean in relation to encouraging renewable energy and improving energy efficiency.

Its called SIDS Dock because its acting as a docking station for funding which comes in association with the carbon markets and can be docked in this and distributed to Pacific countries.

Today we had a ceremony attended by the prime minister of St Lucia, ministers of many other Caribbean and Pacific countries signing this agreement so it's the launch of the project. It will address the needs of island countries in our region and the Pacific to move and shift away from the very expensive diesel petrol to shift to other forms of energy as quickly as possible.

Partly as a result of COP15 its likely that there will be increased finance for mitigation efforts in particular to funding that's associated with carbon markets and this will provide a  the SIDS Dock for money to be docked and then allocated.

Today we looked at the memorandum of understanding involving SPREP the Caribbean Climate Change Centre and member countries.

This is an initiative launched today and will have major implications in terms of encouraging renewable energy in the island countries      and shift away from petroleum and diesel fuel as a key source of energy so it is quite an important and exciting initiative.

Well I think there are some tangible benefits, clearly an initiative like the SIDS Dock, clearly there's also increased financing that will flow.

The mechanics of that are still to be worked out. But there are many significant commitments on the table.

Many commitments which are targeted to the most vulnerable countries which obviously include the island countries and many other partnerships which have been developed at COP15 so there are some positive elements coming out of this COP and the final outcome we still waiting to see.

So we hope we will still have a positive outcome there.




Leaked UN report shows cuts offered at Copenhagen would lead to 3 degrees rise
A leaked United Nations report says emissions cuts offered so far at the Copenhagen climate change summit would still lead to global temperatures rising by an average of three degrees celsius.  The confidential analysis was obtained by the British newspaper, The Guardian.  With the talks entering the final 12 hours, the emergence of the document seriously undermines the statements by governments that they are aiming to limit emissions to a level ensuring no more than a 2 degrees celsius temperature rise over the next century, and indicates that the last day of negotiations will be extremely challenging.

A rise of 3degrees celsius would mean up to 170 million more people suffering severe coastal floods and 550 million more at risk of hunger, according to the Stern economic review of climate change for the UK government – as well as leaving up to 50 percent of species facing extinction. Even a rise of 2 degrees would lead to a sharp decline in tropical crop yields, more flooding and droughts.

Another key obstacle – the fate of the Kyoto treaty – was solved, with China and the developing world seeing off attempts to kill the protocol. But the UN analysis suggests much deeper cuts will have to be agreed today to achieve the stated objective of limiting temperature rises to 2 degrees.

The document was drafted by the UN secretariat running the Copenhagen summit and is dated 11pm on Tuesday night. It is marked 'do not distribute' and 'initial draft.'

It shows a gap of up to 4.2 gigatonnes of carbon emissions between the present pledges and the required 2020 level of 44Gt, which is required to stay below a 2 degrees rise. No higher offers have since been made.

"Unless the remaining gap of around 1.9-4.2Gt is closed and Annex 1 parties [rich countries] commit themselves to strong action before and after 2020, global emissions will remain on an unsustainable pathway that could lead to concentrations equal or above 550 parts per million, with the related temperature rise around 3 degrees," it says. It does not specify a time when 3C would be reached but it is likely to be 2050.
Greenpeace campaigner Joss Garman said: "This is an explosive document that shows the numbers on the table at the moment would lead to nothing less than climate breakdown and an extraordinarily dangerous situation for humanity.

The UN is admitting in private that the pledges made by world leaders would lead to a 3 degrees rise in temperatures. The science shows that could lead to the collapse of the Amazon rainforest, crippling water shortages across South America and Australia and the near-extinction of tropical coral reefs, and that's just the start of it."

Bill McKibben, founder of the campaign 350.org, said: "In one sense this is no secret – we've been saying it for months. But it is powerful to have the UN confirming its own insincerity."

The goal of keeping the increase in global average temperatures below 2C, relative to pre-industrial levels, has become the figure that all rich countries have committed to try to achieve in Copenhagen. However, 102 of the world's poorest countries are holding out for emission cuts resulting in a temperature increase of no more than 15 degrees celsius.

Failing to do that, they say, would leave billions of people in the world homeless, facing famine and open to catastrophic weather-related disasters. But such an ambitious target would mean carbon would have to be removed from the atmosphere.

The internal paper says: "Further steps are possible and necessary to fill the gap. This could be done by increasing the aggregated emission reductions [in rich countries] to at least 30% below the baseline levels, further stronger voluntary actions by developing countries [such as China and India] to reduce their emissions by at least 20% below business as usual, and reducing further emissions from deforestation and international aviation and marine shipping."

Oxfam International's climate adviser, Hugh Cole, said: "At this stage, a deal that fails to keep temperature rises below two degrees is simply not good enough."

Earlier this week, Dr Rajendra Pachauri, who heads the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, said that even with 1.5 degrees rises, many communities would suffer.

"Some of the most vulnerable region in the world will be worst affected. These will be the largest countries in the developing world. They have little infrastructure that might protect them from climate change. The tragedy of the situation is that those countries that have not at all contributed to the problem of climate change will be the ones most affected," he said.

As reported from The Guardian




Solomon Islands signs up to SPREP clean energy deal
Evan Wasuka, Solomon Islands One News, Climate Pasifika

Solomon Islands has put its name down to be part of a Pacific Caribbean arrangement on clean energy.  The deal will set up a mechanism to assist countries in the Pacific and Caribbean to access cleaner and more efficient energy sources.

With the ongoing climate change talks at the UN meeting still in free fall, the Friday morning signing was the week's first good news for Pacific and the small island development developing states – in a long week dominated by snow and even frostier like negotiations.

The leader of the Solomon Islands delegation says the initiative would not only go towards reducing greenhouse gases, but it would also result in energy efficiency for its members, as well as being more cost effective for the economies of small island countries.

"We spend something like 70 percent of our foreign reserves on purchasing fuel," this arrangement will take pressure off our finances," says Environment Minister Gordon Darcy Lilo.

Millions of dollars are spent on importing diesel to run generators that provide the main source of electricity to Solomon Islanders.

Solomon Islands deputy director of energy Nixon Kua says the arrangement will allow his country to gain access to new developments in the energy sector.

"There are some technology projects that we,  for us in the Solomon Islands can take on to mitigate climate change - hydro, geothermal….we have potential in geothermal and we need to further investigate this," says Kua.

The ultimate aim of SIDS Dock, as the initiative is called, is to increase energy efficiency by 25 percent and to generate a minimum of 50 per cent of electric power from renewable sources, as well as a 20-30 percent reduction in the transportation of fuel.  All this is to be achieved by 2033.  SIDS Dock will be jointly managed by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme, SPREP and the Caribbean Community Climate Change Center.  Kua says an important feature of SIDS Dock is provides a platform for the trade in carbon as well as access to other renewable energy sources.

"It will be a docking station for overseas countries and companies to deal with us on energy and this will benefit us."






SIDS Dock Launch
Rachna Lal, USP Journalism, Climate Pasifika
The Small Island Developing States (SIDS) launched their Sustainable Energy Initiative called SIDS Dock today at the COP15.

SIDS annually spends in excess of 25 percent of their foreign exchange earnings on fossil fuels, on which they are highly dependent.

The Director of Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), David Sheppard said SIDS Dock is an institutional mechanism that will facilitate the development of a clean energy economy within the SIDS.

The Work of SIDS doc will be in assisting SIDS with developing a sustainable energy sector, increasing energy efficiency and development of renewable energy resources together with other important key functions.

The Prime Minister of Saint Lucia, Stevenson King in giving his full support to the Dock said, "The SIDS Dock provides one new window of opportunity to reduce our emissions."

By providing SIDS with a mechanism to pursue sustainable energy, SIDS Dock will make it easier for multilateral organization, private sector and donor countries to invest across multiple island states.





Small Islands launch energy initiative to reduce emissions and pursue low carbon development

In spite of concerns that current climate talks may not reach an agreement that guarantees survival of small, vulnerable island nations, several small islands today have taken matters into their own hands to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and improve energy efficiency.

They have signed a historic agreement to combine resources and work together to pilot a unique sustainable energy initiative which will improve their energy efficiency, reduce their reliance on fossil fuel and reduce greenhouse gas emissions against targets they have established or will establish for themselves in the near future. The initiative, known as SIDS-Dock, is essentially an institutional mechanism which will combine creative financing tools, capacity building and logistical resources that aim to radically transform the collective energy sectors of island nations.

Speaking at the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding establishing SIDS-Dock, during a side event at the UNFCCC COP 15, Prime Minister of Saint Lucia, the Honourable Stephenson King, stated that for small island developing nations, making the transition to a clean energy economy is highly dependent on the availability of cost-effective solutions and secure financing. However, he stressed that a clean energy economy is absolutely essential for meeting the challenges posed by climate change in pursuing sustainable development.

The Honourable Lormus Bundhoo, Minister of Environment and NDU for Mauritius, another of the signing countries, added that the SIDS are uniquely vulnerable to the negative impacts of climate change in terms of ecosystem sensitivity, economic structure, small geographic size and adaptation capacity.

"SIDS-Dock has the potential to help us address these vulnerabilities by strengthening our ability to secure from bilateral sources, markets and philanthropy, a pool of capital to invest in low carbon energy projects and in so doing help advance sustainable development of small islands nations," he said.

The Environment Minister highlighted that Mauritius has established a 40 million dollar sustainable energy fund which will help his country reduce its reliance on petroleum and reduce emissions.

The key elements of SIDS-Dock revolve around the cooperative nature of the initiative and its structure that will allow it to access the global carbon capital markets and other green and socially responsible investment funds, but also to access technology and effect transfer as needed.

"SIDS-Dock is so named because it is intended to be a "docking station" for the European and US carbon markets," explained Science Advisor to AOSIS Al Binger. "The potential value of trading avoided GHG emissions is estimated to be between USD $100-400 billion annually. It will thus be a mechanism that facilitates technological transfer and flow of financial capital we intend to for small islands to derive significant benefits through SIDS-Dock".

"When operational, SIDS-Dock will assist Island nations in assessing the potential options for attracting investments for the development of a particular renewable energy or for energy efficiency improvements or conservation, which is very important," he said.

"We will then work on setting emission reduction targets and begin implementing the energy strategy required to achieve these standards."

Twelve Small Island member states of AOSIS (the Alliance of Small Island States) signed the agreement establishing SIDS-Dock today. They are The Commonwealth of the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Jamaica, Mauritius, Palau, Samoa, Saint Lucia, Seychelles and Solomon Islands.

They will work in cooperation across the three SIDS regions towards their goal of increasing energy efficiency by 25% (2005 baseline) at a minimum and to generate a minimum of 50% of electric power from renewable sources, and a 20-30% decrease in liquid petroleum transportation fuel use by 2033.
Contact:
Seema Deo +45 5275 8247 seemadeo@gmail.com
Al Binger +45 5395 3164 yengar@hotmail.com






Fiji@COP15: Act now to save our countries, mankind and our planet

Mr. President
Heads of State and Governments
Excellencies
Colleagues
Ladies and Gentlemen

The Prime Minister of the Republic of The Fiji Islands, Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama, was all prepared to leave Fiji and join us here when, a Cyclone struck Fiji two day ago, ravaging and devastating parts of Fiji. The timing of the Cyclone sent a strong, loud and clear message to this momentous Conference on Climate Change. That message is: ACT NOW TO SAVE OUR COUNTRIES, MANKIND and OUR PLANET. The Prime Minister remained in Fiji to oversee the "picking up of the pieces".

Mr. President
If there ever was an event in the history of mankind requiring unity and a commitment to a common, universal cause, this is it. If there was a moment on our planet requiring concerted action, it is now. If there was a place where we could collectively and unanimously demonstrate to future generations that we sincerely care for the world in which we live, it is here in Copenhagen.

All credible indicators are confirming that our survival as humans is under serious threat. Our way of life, customs, homes, markets, land, our corals, reefs, ocean, our very future, are all at stake. We are challenged by a phenomenon so massively destructive that if we fail to act now, we shall individually and collectively suffer the consequences and will have only ourselves to blame.

Sir, Fiji is a Small Island State. The adverse effects of climate change on our islands are visible and real. Our coastlines are eroding; cyclones are becoming frequent, more intense and destructive.

They bring death and injury to our people, destruction to farms and businesses, devastation to our economy and impose enormous demands on our social services. Our country and our people are under siege from the effects of global warming.

Mr. President
Fiji is privileged to be a member of SIDS, AOSIS and of the Group of 77 and China. It has given strength to our representations. Throughout the process leading to Copenhagen, the needs and interests of Small Island Developing States have come to be recognized and appreciated in their peculiarity. For too long, we have been uncomfortably associated in a development grouping with diverse interests that threatened to drown the realization of our own.

Mr. President
Our interests are not sophisticated. They are not insurmountable either. In terms of financing, all we ask for is a transparent, practical mechanism that ensures ready access to funding. We are not experts at mountain climbing. We will find it frustrating to conquer the steep slopes of application procedures with a thick canopy of financial institutions and implementing agencies which frustrate the delivery of funds to the ground while consuming inordinate portions of the said funds in administrative costs.

Mr. President
As Government, it is our duty, obligation and responsibility to facilitate and promote national development and a better life for our people. Our coffers to address the deleterious effects of climate change on our nation are not bottomless or inexhaustible. Storm surges, flooding, cyclones, saltwater intrusion and rise in sea levels, are phenomenon which have been exacerbated by human activities. Sadly, most of these activities are perpetrated somewhere far away from our shores. I urge all to let us respond now, at this moment, together, to address global warming. If we act now and together, victory over global warming shall be ours - yours and mine.

Mr. President
Fiji, like most others in AOSIS, have been consistent and clarion in our call for deep cuts and reduction in carbon emission by developed countries. This is because we have no other options open to us as small island nations. To request that we give up our call for 350ppm and the 1.5 degree Celsius would be akin to asking SIDS to commit suicide. We do not have the leeway or option to make that decision.

Fiji now calls on the bigger developing countries also to reduce their emission. It is indefensible to hide in the cloak of under-development so as not committing to a universal responsibility to reducing carbon emissions. Together we aspire, together we shall achieve. We all, industrialized countries, major developing countries and others, must prevent the profligate carbon emission bird of sorrow from nesting in our hair.

Mr. President
In the global scheme of things, Fiji's emission is very insignificant, some 0.001%. We see Reducing Emission from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD), and enhancing forest carbon stock in developing countries (REDD+) as a small but meaningful way in which our country can contribute to mitigating climate change...Fiji is well ahead in the formulation of REDD policies. We believe that a robust, equitable and transparent Agreement for REDD is a must.

Finally Mr. President,
I express my Delegation's gratitude to you and the peoples of Demark for the warmth of the welcome and reception during our stay in this great and historic city of Copenhagen. We pay tribute to the Danish Government for leading the way in the development of green technology. The greatest tribute we can pay to Copenhagen and to humanity is to agree, sign and fully implement; either now or soon, a legally binding instrument that addresses challenges imposed by climate change.

THANK YOU MR. PRESIDENT






Papua New Guinea@COP15: Environmental Revolution

Prime Ministerial Statement
COP15
Copenhagen

Obviously this is not an audience that needs to be convinced that climate Change is real.

For Pacific Island states, however, some of our habitats and islands face total obliteration.  Without question, climate change is the greatest challenge of our time.

Therefore, my objective in coming to Copenhagen is to identify what needs to be done by our countries together - rich and poor!  Papua New Guinea seeks to contribute to a legally-binding, robust and effective outcome as soon as possible.

Today, humanity stands at a cross-road.  Old energy technologies are bringing about untold damage due to global warming.  At the same time, we have the knowledge and technology necessary to totally power our economies from renewable energy while halting forest loss and improving food security.  Leaders, such as myself, must seize this challenge and fundamentally restructure our developmental pathways.  Economic growth must be forever disconnected from carbon emissions.  With thoughtful support, maybe developing countries, like mine, can frame the next 'revolution' – the 'Environmental Revolution.'

Do we stand a chance? As we are seeing in Papua New Guinea, we must understand that climate change is occurring faster than the experts predicted.  Indeed, it is likely that we need to stabilize at 350 parts per million, not 450 parts per million!

To return to 350 parts per million, however, we must protect and increase our forests and broadly apply new technologies including carbon capture and storage and negative carbon.

Therefore, rather than blaming our problems on others, Papua New Guinea is focused on becoming part of the solution. Last Wednesday, my Government adopted a Draft 'Climate Compatible Development Plan.'

In summary, my Government has accepted the challenge to become effectively carbon neutral by 2030, meaning a 100% reduction against Business As Usual, while at the same time tripling our GDP-per-capita.  Obviously, this objective is highly dependent on adequate, predictable, and sustainable financial support.

In order to do this, we must focus on three key mitigation areas:
1.      Land Use ;
2.      Power Generation; and
3.      Transportation.

At the same time, we must simultaneously adapt to these five challenges:
1.      Coastal Flooding;
2.      Malaria;
3.      Inland Flooding;
4.      Agricultural yield change; and
5.      Damage to coral reefs.


While it may appear to some that our goals are overly ambitious for a Small Island Developing State, we believe otherwise.  In fact, we believe it would be NEGLIGENT to pursue any other course.  For most developing countries, our forests and rivers have sustained us for thousands of years. But, in some ways, we now feel trapped!  The old ways allowed us to survive, but cannot prepare our children for the future.  With the ecosystem services of our land valued at zero, our rural communities that depend on and care for forests must make a living in other ways.
The result is around 20% of global carbon emissions.

Clearly, we cannot defeat the ravages of climate change without also defeating deforestation!

The challenge of REDD+, therefore, is to value forests more alive than dead.

But, how much is enough?  The recent international effort which focused on the interim financial needs for REDD+, has determined that between 15 to 25 billion Euros may underwrite a 25% reduction in global rates of deforestation by 2015.

At first, that sounds like a lot.  Put another way, we are talking only 1.5 cents-per-day for the citizens of the United States and Europe - OR - about equal to the Goldman Sachs bonus pool for the year of 2009.

If we can make REDD+ work, our communities can continue to live sustainably, something most of the world has forgotten---in the rush to get ahead!

To conclude, if we are to slow, stop and reverse the effects of global warming, we must thoughtfully redesign our value frameworks.

For example, Exxon, the remaining king of the 'Age of Oil,' is valued at over $325 billion; while Google, the champion of the 'Information Age', is valued around $190 billion.  At the same time, left standing, the world's last great tropical forests are valued at ZERO!

If Exxon and Google together disappear tomorrow, the vast majority of humanity will not even notice.

While if the world's tropical forests disappear into smoke by morning, every human on earth will wake up to a world forever changed!

This is not rational!  Therefore, we must act now!

To succeed in Copenhagen by Friday, clearly, bold leadership will be required on both sides of the economic divide to forge this change!

Leadership is also essential for effective implementation.

Sheikh Zaki Yamani, the former Minister for Energy of Saudi Arabia, famously opined: "The Stone Age did not end for lack of stone, and the Oil Age will end long before the world runs out of oil."

The Copenhagen Climate Change process must result in a legally binding agreement.  Such an agreement can catalyse the necessary 'Environmental Age', lest we suffocate life on earth beneath our greed!

Thank you!





Samoan Minister fears malaria from climate change
Cherelle Jackson, Environment Weekly, Climate Pasifika

Copenhagen, 17 December- Fears of new vector born diseases are imminent in Samoa as a result of climate change.  Minister of Health, Hon. Gatoloai Amataga Gidlow said climate change will threaten not just the environment but the health of Samoans.

"There is a growing fear of the introduction of malaria as climate change worsens," she said.  Gatoloai was speaking at an event hosted by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to discuss the impacts of climate change on health at the United Nations Conference on Climate Change.

"I would like to highlight that like most developing island countries, we grapple with diseases such as dengue fever and typhoid, my fear of climate change is that these are going to be more common and prevelant."

Her fears of the introduction of new diseases and the increase in existing infections are shared by WHO.

Maria Neira, Director of Public Health and Environment says the impact on health is tremendous the world over.

"The human cost of climate change may be measured in the toll imposed by droughts, floods and heat-waves. The World Health Organization and climate change experts have warned of the adverse effects global warming has on air quality, food production, water availability and the distribution of infectious diseases."

For Samoa, fears of malaria are legitimate.

Caused by a parasite of the Plasmodium family, malaria is transmitted by the bite of a female anopheline mosquito.  The parasite infects human red blood cells, resulting in lysis of the red blood cell.  As the world heats up, ecosystems struggle to cope with the rapid ecological changes. Global warming trigger weather changes which includes but is not limited to heat waves and shift in wet and dry seasons of the Pacific.

Because the mosquitoes that carry the disease do not thrive in cooler climate some researchers have suggested a link between a rise in mosquito population and climate change.  WHO suggests that a modest increase in temperature could lead to a population boom in mosquitoes and therefore malaria.

Gatoloai, Samoas Health Minister says Samoa cannot afford to have malaria or an increase of any other disease in the small island.

"We simply do not have enough Doctors and trained medical personal to cope with an influx in hospital admissions," she said.

Since 1988, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has reviewed scientific research in its most recent report, concluded that the average temperature of the earth's surface has risen by 0.6 °C since the late 1800s.  It is expected to increase by another 1.4–5.8 °C by the year 2100 – a rapid and profound change.  This according to WHO can only increase the threats on health.

Neira of WHO said: "Health systems have been protecting people from the hazards of weather and climate for years. Early warning systems, public education for behavioral change, disease control, disaster preparedness, mosquito control, food hygiene and inspection, nutritional supplementation, vaccines, primary and mental health care, and training have been shown to reduce vulnerability to the effects of climate change."

Over 150,000 deaths annually are attributed to climate change, WHO says this number will no doubt increase with the rise in temperatures.






Soundbites@COP15: Tuvalu Prime Minister Apisai Ielemia
Ahimsa Kibikibi, PNG National Broadcasting Corporation, Climate Pasifika

Copenhagen, 17 December - Tuvalu's Prime Minister Apisai Ielemia is standing firm and will not be signing any deal unless it is legally binding and promotes concrete commitments for deeper emissions reductions from developed countries, that will significantly reduce greenhouse gas levels down to safer levels.

At a final press conference before the climate change talks head into the last but crucial 24 hours, Mr Ielemia made it clear his country will not be accepting anything less.

He explains why.

Transcript:"It is now or never, we wait for next year or the year after or whatever year, to sign it, it is going to be more risky, to our people and to our islands.  You will hear from your part of the world, that our island nations have been destroyed by a tsunami or a strong wave, just over night.  You have seen how little our islands are.  The wave can just come from one side of the ocean to one side of the sea, so that's how dangerous our situation is and we are putting this forward at this very conference," he said.
Soundbites@COP15: Dr Graham Sem
Ahimsa Kibikibi, PNG National Broadcasting Corporation, Climate Pasifika

Copenhagen, 18 December - As climate talks fast approach the end, the world anticipates and asks - is a legally binding agreement anywhere in sight?

Climate Pasifika poses the question to Dr Graham Sem, who has been to 10 COP meetings, in his role as negotiator, adviser and his previous role in the UNFCCC.

Transcript:
"Everybody was saying that we will go to Copenhagen, we'll negotiate, we'll probably not get the deal we are looking for.  We'll probably agree to some kind of framework and then we will continue discussing and that could be one of the issues.  From my point of view, I think that will be a good option, because no deal is better than a bad deal."






No US pressure on AOSIS, Ambassador Williams
Makereta Komai, PACNEWS, Climate Pasifika

Copenhagen, 18 December - One of the leading strong advocates for the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), Grenada's representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Dessima Williams has refuted claims that the United States is pressuring AOSIS to abandon its 1.5 degrees, the ceiling for global temperatures.  Ambassador Williams admitted that the U.S President, Barack Obama has spoken to her Prime Minister, Tilman Thomas to discuss the AOSIS position.

"My PM had conversation with President Obama Wednesday evening and indicated to him that all of the AOSIS position remains on the table.  President Obama did not indicate any areas that need 'heavy lifting' from AOSIS", Ambassador Williams told journalists.

Immediately after the press conference, Ambassador Williams and a group of AOSIS senior officials were scheduled to speak with major European countries to discuss the 1.5 degrees to stay alive position.  The European Union agrees that the global temperature must be below two degrees but has not put any specific number on the table.

"1.5 and 2 degrees are currently on the draft text now being negotiated, but there is increasing consensus for 'below two degrees", said Yvo de Boer, UNFCCC executive secretary.

PM Thomas of Grenada, in his statement at the High Level Segment on behalf of the 43 AOSIS members, maintained that a Copenhagen climate deal must 'proceed along a path that will restrict long term temperature increases to well below 1.5 degrees celsius above pre-industrialised levels.





INsideINsights@COP15 – Lisa Williams-Lahari, Cook Islands
Pacific media freelancer Lisa Williams-Lahari talks about digital access, short term funding, and the power plays that make UN meetings on climate change such a dynamic source of stories for newshounds.

"You don't just report on the frustrations and tensions here, you have to admit you are a part of it all, while trying to step back and do your job."
http://climatepasifika.blogspot.com/2009/12/insideinsightscop15-lisa-williams.html




D-day: Leaders can still save Copenhagen, says WWF
Makereta Komai, PACNEWS, Climate Pacific media
Friday 18 December 2009, COPENHAGEN--Leaders arriving to sign a Copenhagen climate agreement and finding that they now need to salvage it need to take a global rather than national approach to the numerous outstanding issues, WWF said today.

"It looks like The Copenhagen Climate Summit could have made it through the valley of death", said Kim Carstensen, Leader of WWF's Global Climate Initiative.

"It's encouraging that some new offers are starting to hit the table. Now is the time for Heads of States to show their leadership skills. We need to turn the positive dynamic into a real domino effect, so that actions by countries add up to a global effort that protects us from climate change." Carstensen said that after days of deadlock there was renewed movement on the long term climate financing issue. If the renewed finance discussion also leads to willingness for more ambition on emissions reductions targets, there could still be a Copenhagen climate deal with some substance.

"Europe has often claimed a leadership role on climate and now is the time to exercise it," said Carstensen.

"A bold step forward on emissions cuts to 2020 – moving to at least the necessary 30% cut from 1990 levels – could be the deal making gesture the climate talks need at this point. The developing world would be able to see that some of the developed world is listening to their concerns."

Carstensen said it was welcome to hear US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tell the Copenhagen climate conference that the US stands ready to do its fair share.

"US help in mobilising an additional $100 billion annually by 2020 to help climate change initiatives and adaptation in the developing world is also extremely welcome", Carstensen added. However, we need to know that this is new and additional money and not a reshuffling or double counting of existing aid."

To back up the positive signals sent to the international negotiations in Copenhagen, WWF calls on President Obama to make domestic climate and clean energy legislation his top priority. WWF hopes that positive moves by the US and the EU could also inspire China to up the ante. "The levels and conditions of transparency of emissions cuts in the emerging economies are another sticking point in Copenhagen that's still clouded in silence" said Carstensen. "A move from China on this highly contentious issue could break a real deadlock."

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[pima.nius] Copenhagen: Looking back, looking forward

11:49 AM |


- Pacific.scoop.co.nz - http://pacific.scoop.co.nz -

Copenhagen: Looking back, looking forward

Posted By selwyn On December 20, 2009 @ 11:03 am In Articles, Columns, Opinions | 2 Comments


Barry Coates writes from Copenhagen.

Pacific Scoop
By Barry Coates in Copenhagen.

This is the way the summit ends. Not with a bang, but with a whimper. 119 world leaders came, they saw and they certainly didn't conquer. They were captured by their limited vision, their vested interests and the lack of trust between them that has it roots in long standing divisions, including a denial of historical responsibility on the part of the major developed countries.

There was some serious damage done to reputations. The United Nations processes were deeply flawed, countries like New Zealand have been exposed as self-interested blockers and President Obama doesn't walk on water. Some leaders came out with credit. The vulnerable countries, particularly the Pacific, negotiated hard and fought for 1.5°C to be included in the Copenhagen Accord – they succeeded but their efforts to have a clear aim for a legally binding treaty through this process was stripped out late last night. President Lula from Brazil assumed the mantle of world statesman with a powerful speech and an offer to help other developing countries. Thousands of civil society activists were able to build public support and attention across the world.

But to little avail. The final agreement was empty of content and extremely weak on the level of ambition. We came into the Summit calling for a Fair, Ambitious and Binding deal. We lost the Fair early on when Annex 1 countries could not agree to a financing package beyond the next three years. It was closely followed by the Ambition – leaders could not even commit to a global goal of keeping global temperature rise below 2°C. Then in the wee hours of this morning, the Binding was stripped out in a very untransparent way.

Next steps are for emissions reduction offers to be tabled by 31st January 2010. As explained below, that is a dangerous development, given the lack of political will to decent offers from Annex 1 countries. Then there will be a two week negotiating session in Bonn Germany from 31 May to 11 June 2010, followed by the next annual UN Climate Change Conference (CoP 16) towards the end of 2010 in Mexico City. None of that gives us much confidence that they will be able to muster the political will or bridge the political divides that are needed to provide the political mandates that are essential for a FAB deal.

Because their job is not done, nor is ours. We need to build a far more powerful campaign for the future. We must ensure that the politicians who caused this problem are held to account for this missed opportunity.

I am in a hotel with Oxfam colleagues from around the world, all having worked so hard but feeling pretty empty after this empty outcome. We are off to a bar to cheer ourselves up and to ask some of the tough questions about where to from here. And I will do so with partners in the Global Campaign for Climate Action (the TckTckTck campaign). Anything is on the table for re-thinking. Except wavering in our determination to secure this FAB deal. Anything else is unthinkable to ourselves, our kids, our planet and for billions of vulnerable people.


Oxfam New Zealand Executive Director Barry Coates is writing from the United Nations Climate Conference in Copenhagen.

Since waking up this morning, I have been working with colleagues to prepare the following analysis. I hope you find it useful.

But now I'm signing off from this blog and will take a few days off, to recover my health and my sleep. Happy Xmas to you all and thanks for reading these posts.

What the Copenhagen Decisions mean:

There is extreme urgency. The scale of the crisis means that emissions need to peak within five years. People are already suffering unnecessarily from a lack of protection and support. We have just lost a year. The hope of millions of people has been frustrated and potentially a base of political support has been lost.
Status of Decisions:


AWG-LCA: Document UNFCCC/CP/2009/L6

The document setting out the conclusions of the work of the AWG-LCA was agreed. Tuvalu and Barbados sought to ensure the process would lead to a binding protocol.

CoP Decision: "CoP takes note of the Copenhagen Accord 18 Dec 2009." It is not agreed, only noted. Because there was not consensus on the Accord, it was agreed the Parties supporting it would be listed.

The Reasons for the Impasse

There were two interrelated issues that were to blame for the turmoil during the summit, although it should be recognised that the roots of this failure extend back at least to the initiation of the Bali Action Plan.

1. The Process:

There were a small number of countries that came to this Summit without the intention of negotiating in good faith. They were generally countries that have massive vested interests in fossil fuels, or that exclusively focus on their short-term competitiveness. These countries often undermined the negotiations dynamic.

Many countries were left out of the 'friends of the Chair" process and withheld their agreement. While there was an attempt to include negotiating groups, the selection of participants was not open and transparent. The problem was also that the Danish Presidency grossly mismanaged the process. It was most unfortunate that Heads of State found themselves effectively negotiating from the podium, rehearsing their national positions rather than proposing breakthroughs which had not been achieved in the preparatory meetings.

The usual brinkmanship was relied on to deliver an agreement after hours of late night working. This forced an agreement under conditions of tiredness, stress and bilateral influence (which opens up the potential for bullying and favours, reinforcing the positions of the larger and more powerful countries).

The breakdown of this process may signal that the days of stitching up deals in small selective groups and then expecting all countries to sign up are over. There must be questions over the style used for consensus building and decision making.

Climate change negotiations are starting to look eerily like trade negotiations, including the dominance of commercial self-interest in the position. We need processes which move us away from competitive negotiations, where countries try to minimise their concessions, to collaborative actions informed by the science, for example, conducting problem-solving sessions in mixed groups rather than blocks. It is clear that the UNFCCC negotiating process would need substantial reform to handle the complexity of this issue.

While the security challenges of such a meeting are huge, it is inexcusable that the forward planning did not take account of needing civil society and other observers to be present for transparency and legitimacy.

2. The Substance:

The Annex 1 countries didn't come to Copenhagen with sufficient offers and then didn't improve them. Even the offer on long term finance was full of caveats and loopholes. The rich countries did not make offers that were based, even loosely, on sound science. We were told there would be final offers made during the last hours. These were never tabled.

Some developing countries came with proposals and concessions (eg. China on MRV, Brazil on financial contribution for developing countries and MRV, South Africa offer on emissions reductions). An analysis of Annex 1 offers compared to major developing countries offers on a consistent basis of below BAU (Business as Usual) is likely to show that at least some major developing countries are more ambitious than average Annex 1 levels (particularly when omissions and loopholes offered to Annex 1 countries such as on surplus AAUs, LULUCF accounting rules and bunker fuels are taken into account).

The loss of full agreement, that would have included international MRV for China, means that we potentially lose an important step that could help unlock the negotiations. Also at risk from the lack of full agreement is the agreement to the starter funding for adaptation and the goal on long term finance (even if not a commitment).

On the other side, the lack of full agreement means some of the unhelpful parts of the Accord are not locked in, such as a systematic lowering of ambition and a lack of clear commitment even to 2°C. The process for agreeing mid-term targets, without a criteria for burden sharing and a top down process to test the adequacy of targets, is of serious concern. Continuing the current pledge and review approach undermines equitable burden sharing and a level of ambition based on science. Current emissions reductions pledges by Annex 1 countries are outweighed by the loopholes. On current pledges, we are headed for a 3.9°C temperature rise.

On the positive side, there is at least a consolidation into a Chair's text for AWG-KP and AWG-LCA which has helped unblock the large accumulation of previous texts that Parties refused to take off the table.

The Politics:

The agreement with China is a step forward in terms of gaining political capital for the Obama Administration's position in the US; however, a full agreement to the Copenhagen Accord would have been more helpful. Unfortunately, the adversarial atmosphere in Copenhagen might be used to provide opponents of climate change and multilateralism with ammunition. More broadly, the lack of clear success might mean that some Heads of State would be wary of coming to the next Summit on climate change.

We face major challenges in calling for Parties to get back to negotiations given the likelihood that there will be a widespread perception that this would fail again. The lack of trust is even deeper than it was before Copenhagen (it should be observed this is not unique to the UNFCCC process – the Doha trade negotiations process isn't much better). Moving forward, we will be challenged to say what has changed in the underlying political conditions where 116 Heads of State have failed.

Article printed from Pacific.scoop.co.nz: http://pacific.scoop.co.nz

URL to article: http://pacific.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/copenhagen-looking-back-looking-forward/


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