Smaller Island States Leaders’ Port Moresby Declaration on Climate Change

We, the Leaders of the Pacific Smaller Island States, represent the most vulnerable countries in the world and at the frontline to the impacts of climate change.

We are deeply concerned that the future of our nations is threatened by the impacts of climate change.

We are already suffering the impacts of climate change and call upon the international community to respond with a concerted and ambitious approach to address the greatest threat to humanity.

The world must rapidly transform its use of energy from fossil fuels to low carbon development, including renewable energy and other technologies that may become available to move to zero emissions.

At the end of this year, nations will come together in Paris for the COP 21 to agree on a new protocol, legal instrument or an agreed outcome to address climate change. This is our last chance to reach an outcome that must reverse the global warming pathway to ensure the future survival and existence of our nations, people and culture.

We reaffirm our call for a new and ambitious international climate change agreement that will be adopted in Paris. It must be comprehensive, forward looking, effective and legally binding in all aspects.

We, Leaders of Pacific Smaller Island States recognise and align with the positions expressed in the statements issued by other Pacific Summits on Climate Change, in particular the Suva Declaration on Climate Change in September 2015, the Nuku’alofa Ministerial Declaration on Sustainable Weather and Climate Services for a Resilient Pacific in July 2015, the Polynesian Leaders’ Taputapuatea Declaration on Climate Change in July 2015, the Lifou Ministerial Declaration on Climate Change in April 2015, the SIDS Accelerated Modalities of Action (SAMOA) Pathway in September 2014, the Majuro Declaration on Climate Leadership in September 2013, and the Niue Declaration on Climate Change in August 2008.

To this end we urge that COP 21 must deliver a legally binding agreement, which will:
a) Limit global average temperature increase to well below 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels;
b) Ensure that human rights to exist as a people are protected;
c) Uphold the polluter pay principle;
d) Address all sources of greenhouse gas emissions including those from international transport;
e) Carry out a review to conduct a major renewal of international mitigation commitments every five years with flexibility for Small Island Developing States and Least Developed Countries, to examine the most recent science, as well as pathways for higher ambition, and provide an opportunity to recommit to stronger action;
f) Include a mechanism to address loss and damage as a stand-alone element of the agreement and within that mechanism create a facility to effectively support people displaced by the impacts of climate change;
g) Ensure ease of access to adequate and predictable finance, technology and capacity building to ensure that Small Island Developing States and Least Developed Countries can transition to fossil fuel free economies and to have the ability to adapt to the impacts of climate change; and,
h) Recognise the special circumstances of Small Island Developing States and Least Developed Countries and direct additional efforts to assist them meet the challenge of climate change.

We, Leaders of the Pacific Smaller Island States also call on all nations, particularly the advanced economies in our region and beyond, to rise to the challenge of climate change and take transformational action to steer us on a path where climate change is no longer a threat to our planet.

As a first step in this direction we call for a global moratorium on all new coal mines. We cannot afford to lock in any further fossil fuel emissions. Green-Blue economies must be the way for now and into the future.

We, Leaders of the Pacific Smaller Island States are committed to a sustainable and resilient future. We call on all others to follow and to leave no one behind.