Kainaki II Declaration for Urgent Climate Action Now

Kainaki II Declaration for Urgent Climate Change Action Now

Securing the Future of our Blue Pacific 

We, the Leaders of the Pacific Islands Forum, meeting in Tuvalu see first-hand the impacts and implications of the climate change crisis facing our Pacific Island Nations.

Right now, climate change and disasters are impacting all our countries. Our seas are rising, oceans are warming, and extreme events such as cyclones and typhoons, flooding, drought and king tides are frequently more intense, inflicting damage and destruction to our communities and ecosystems and putting the health of our peoples at risk. All around the world, people affected by disaster and climate change-induced displacement are losing their homes and livelihoods, particularly the most vulnerable atoll nations.

As Leaders, we reflect and acknowledge the substantial work and investment over two and half decades of climate change negotiations, commitments, and scientific advancements, all intended to avert the crisis we now face. However, we are concerned that progress within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) must keep pace with the challenges we face today and in the future, in line with the Boe Declaration on Regional Security.

We hear the voices of our youth and the most vulnerable within our societies, having a loud and resounding impact. In amplifying the alarm we have been sounding for decades, including the youth of Tuvalu who called for the preservation of their homeland and culture. We welcome the Republic of the Marshall Islands’ role as co-lead on the United Nations Secretary General (UNSG) Climate Action Summit’s Youth and Public Mobilisation track, including through promoting the “Kwon Gesh” Youth Climate Pledge.

We welcome the work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which remains the authoritative scientific body on climate change and is regarded as providing governments the best available science on climate change. The IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C indicates that in model pathways with no or limited overshoots of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, global net anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions decline by about 45% from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching net zero around 2050.

We note with grave concern and fear for our collective future that global greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise, reaching record levels; and based on current trends, without urgent action, we will exceed 1.5°C by as early as 2030 and reach 3°C or more by the end of this century.

We are of the conviction that the shared prosperity and security of our Blue Pacific can only safely exist if the international community pursue efforts to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, as set out in the Paris Agreement. The science is non-negotiable. Urgent action by the international community to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is critical to keep us on the 1.5°C pathway.

Urgent action is needed to ensure our shared needs and interests, potential and survival of our Blue Pacific and this great Blue Planet.

It is clear that to overcome the climate change crisis facing our Pacific Island Nations, we must increase our global solidarity and align our actions with our common concerns. Any failure to act will impact not just us, but our children and all generations to come. The time to act is now.

The Pacific Ocean is at the heart of our Blue Pacific narrative and critical for our future. As Leaders of the Pacific Islands Forum, custodians of the world’s largest ocean and carbon sink, and representatives of our Pacific peoples, we call for immediate action and not just discussion of ambition. Action must be taken in our region, and internationally, to support clean, healthy, and productive oceans, the sustainable management, use and conservation of marine resources, growth in the blue economy and address the impacts of climate change on ocean health.

We, the Leaders of the Pacific Islands Forum, call for:

 

As we approach the 2020 milestone, all parties to the Paris Agreement to meet or exceed their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) in order to pursue global efforts to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, recognising that this is critical to the security of our Blue Pacific. For those that are not a Party to the Paris Agreement, we believe they should take similar steps to pursue efforts to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels;

 

(ii) All Parties to the Paris Agreement to formulate and communicate mid-century long-term low greenhouse gas emissions development strategies by 2020. This may include commitments and strategies to achieve net zero carbon by 2050, taking into account the urgency highlighted by the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, and establish the necessary policy, financing and governance mechanisms required to achieve this;

 

(iii) All countries to recall the United Nations Secretary General’s opening remarks at the Pacific Islands Forum Leaders-UNSG High-level Dialogue in May 2019 regarding carbon pricing, fossil fuel subsidies, and just transition from fossil fuels, and invite all Parties to the Paris Agreement to reflect on these views when updating their NDCs and formulating Low Emissions Development Strategies (LEDS);

 

(iv) The members of G7 and G20 to rapidly implement their commitment to phase out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, acknowledging the priorities of the United Nations Secretary General for the upcoming Climate Action Summit;

 

(v) The international community to continue efforts towards meeting their global climate finance commitment of USD 100 billion per year by 2020 from a variety of sources in the context of meaningful mitigation actions and transparency on implementation, through bilateral, regional or global mechanisms, including the replenishment of the Green Climate Fund; and to complete work required to enable the Adaptation Fund to serve the Paris Agreement;

 

(vi) The international community to immediately increase support and assistance for Pacific-led science-based initiatives intended to improve our understanding of risk and vulnerability, including through support for modelling and risk mapping capabilities, the development of methodologies for understanding, projecting and responding to climate change-related economic and infrastructure impacts, and capacity building support for evidence-based decision-making and project development;

 

(vii) The international community to welcome the work of the IPCC and consider in relevant decision-making the findings of the Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, the Special Report on Climate Change and Land and the upcoming Special Report on Oceans and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate;

(viii) All parties attending COP 25 to welcome the focus on oceans, and consider developing a work programme on oceans within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change process and convene a workshop on the climate-ocean nexus in 2020;

 

(ix) All countries to accelerate support for the work of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage associated with Climate Change Impacts and ensure that efforts to avert, minimise and address loss and damage are key elements of the financial support needed to meet climate change and development challenges in the Pacific region; and,

 

(x) The United Nations Secretary General to urgently appoint a Special Adviser on climate change and security and the United Nations Security Council to appoint a special rapporteur to produce a regular review of global, regional and national security threats caused by climate change, in recognition that climate change is the single greatest threat to the Blue Pacific region as reaffirmed in the Boe Declaration on Regional Security and is a growing global security threat.

 

Read the full declaration HERE

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