REMARKS: Forum Deputy Manoni opens Regional Climate Security Dialogue

Opening remarks

Dr Filimon Manoni
Deputy Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum
at the Regional Climate Security Dialogue

PIF Executive Conference room
31 August-1 September 2022

Excellencies, Senior Officials and Colleagues, good morning to you all and welcome to the Regional Climate Security Dialogue.

Firstly, to our colleagues from UNDP, IOM and Adelphi, I want to thank you for your efforts to bring us all together today for this valuable Dialogue.

Thank you also for all of the work you have done to date to bring the Pacific Climate Security Project to fruition. It seems like a long time ago we were having our first discussions about approaching the UNSG’s Peace Building Fund for support.

We’re excited to be here today, to have these conversations, to share our experiences.

In 2018, Leaders met in Nauru, in the midst of an increasingly complex regional security environment driven by multifaceted security challenges.

Yet in the face of all that complexity, one thing was, and still is, very clear: Climate change is the single greatest threat to the livelihoods, security and wellbeing of the peoples of the Pacific.

In making the Boe Declaration on Regional Security, Leaders asked that we unify efforts behind one priority cause: securing our sovereignty and territorial integrity in the face of the impacts of climate change.

That was the position of Leaders in 2018, and it remains the position of Leaders today.

Through the recent release of 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent, our Leaders reiterated the region’s expanded concept of security, highlighting the many impacts of climate change and disasters and their threats to the future of the region’s people and the statehood of many Pacific nations.

To achieve our Leader’s ambition of securing our sovereignty and territorial integrity in the face of the impacts of climate change, we need to first understand the impacts that climate change will have on the regional security landscape.

Research and evidence-based knowledge products such as the regional Climate Security Assessment Framework that you will be deliberating on today and tomorrow are an important step in helping us to do just that.

This Assessment Framework should help to provide an evidence base for the Leaders’ regional position that climate change is the single greatest threat to the security and wellbeing of Pacific Peoples.

I’m pleased that you are all here today, in-person and online, to further shine a spotlight on climate change as a security issue.

I encourage you to share your knowledge with our visiting team here today.

I also encourage you to take advantage of having these specialists from across the globe here to bring some global perspectives and experiences to our regional conversation on climate security.

At the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, our key focus is delivering the Leaders’ vision of a region of peace, harmony, security, social inclusion, and prosperity.

Your work today and tomorrow is important, and appreciated, and will help us all achieve that vision.

Thank you all for being here to assist with this important work.

I wish you all the best for your discussions. — ENDS



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