06/12/2013 Community Representatives to Warsaw, Poland on Climate Change
Niue Government Climate Change Adviser, Rossy Pulehetoa-Mitiepo, and Civil Society Rep, Ritchie Mautama, returned home last week after a month of travel to and from Warsaw, Poland to attend the high level Climate Change conference and that involved intensive lobbying and demanding debates.
Both citizens from Hakupu accompanied the Associate Minister of Climate Change, Hon, Dion Paki Taufitu to the international meeting renowned to involve World Leaders, Ministers, Government officials and Civil Society members.
Climate Change remains, no qualm about it, the most unpredictable and frightening challenge to our lives on this beautiful paradise.
The Warsaw conference ended with most likely mixed success about the final outcome depending on the perception and varying country positions of developed countries on this major topic. If the conference success is measured on the final press statement of the conference, its best shot hinge on the premise to keep governments on track towards a 2015 climate change agreement including new decisions that will cut emissions from deforestation and on loss and damage.
Deforestation is a term used to describe the cutting and burning down of trees or forests for agricultural, commercial and housing purposes thereby affecting the natural vegetation and wild life in the area. For instance, if the whole Huvalu Forest is cleared for tourism development we’ll find the great loss of biodiversity life, native trees the treasure habitat for birds, land crabs, fruit bats including damage of carbon dioxide gas released from trees which sustain mammal and human life.
An international funding mechanism for vulnerable communities and population has been established as from next year 2014. Governments clarified how to mobilize funding to assist developing countries actions to curb emissions and adapt to climate change.
In Warsaw a milestone was set with 48 of the poorest countries of the world finalized plans to deal with the inevitable impacts of climate change. The next UNFCC will be in New York next Sepetember.
The focus of discussions now are on economic activities of developing countries where we need to include climate change planning into the village development plan says Rossy Mitiepo.
It is the fervent hope that developed countries and mainstream donors will fulfil their pledges for finance to reach communities in support of their climate change adaptation plans and activities on the ground, she said.
It is such a long process, tiring and repetitive but we just have to move with the rest of the world, She concluded.
On the ground, we have seen on TV and definitely learn from many workshops on climate change conducted locally growing concern of remote populations around the globe. Our own people participated in local sponsored climate change talent quests with meaningful songs which enhance their understanding of what and how to mitigate climate change disasters. Years and old generation past with almost the same messages being advocated the world over.
Country leaders from those nations like USA, Australia etc with money to spare continue to make political tactics and defy technical and scientific advice on climate change negative scenarios.
Small Island Developing countries counting Niue and Cook Islands have fought more than hard to convince developed countries with changing achievement. Frequently, we find more being said no matter SIDs present themselves as one bloc very little success come by. Such is the quelling game of international diplomacy that is usually or fair to say always dominated by bullying political powers that fight hard in principle to agree on the negative effects of climate change but neglect the real impacts these events cause to the planet over other priority issues such as political interest and economic development.
“Sadly various sub-continents have their own exclusive climate situations to deal with. The massive surge storms in the Philippines revealed the truth or cruel reality of extreme climatic events on human lives.”
“But the Warsaw conference outcome still made diplomatic progress for governments to do further work at the country level. And the hope is we can do our homework so that we can make a difference and be counted.”
“Our children study about it in school and perform skits on climate change awareness, particularly, some of them featured in TV advertisements on water and health promotion marketing education. Today we are seeing more bush fires, the scorching heat from the sun and sporadic illness to human lives. Pests attack root crops and our native trees and plants. The sea conditions have been erratic.”
“We have seen and will continue to see the devastating effects of climate change with our own eyes” she concluded.
“No one knows for sure when the next disaster happens, that’s how worrying it is”.
The national cyclone season alert notice is already in place and the village people are asked to take serious note about weather updates and what precautionary actions that must be taken.