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Posted on on October 28th, 2009
by Pincas Jawetz (


The 14 States of the Pacific Island Countries Forum, led by Australia, seem to ask for much less in the run-up to Kyoto then the Association of Small Islands States (AOSIS) which is open to European inputs. We wonder what happened to the New Zealand leadership of the Pacific Islands, did it evaporate when Australia started to reassert its position as the largest state in the region? Can one expect Australia to speak up for the much smaller islands, or indeed they be advised to look for allies elsewhere?


From: <Lice-Lia-Ann

   29 OCTOBER 2009 SUVA (Pacnews) — As the world counts down to Copenhagen for a possible new climate change deal,  some Forum Island Countries increasingly appear to align themselves to the position of the Association of Small Islands States (AOSIS) rather than the Pacific Islands Forum’s Action on Climate Change, endorsed in Cairns, in August this year.

   This position came out clearly at a panel discussion organised by the European Union in Suva last night.

   Deputy director of the Secretariat of the Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), Kosi Latu said the Pacific wants an ‘ambitious and legally binding agreement.’ “A political decision is of no use to us – he said.

   “Pacific Island Countries will take the AOSIS position to enable our voices to be heard.

   AOSIS comprises 39 small island developing countries in the Caribbean, Indian Ocean and the Pacific.

All 14 Forum Island Countries are members of AOSIS.

   In September, AOSIS declared its negotiating position calling on developed countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emission (GHG) by more than 45 percent below 1990 levels by 2020 and more than 95 percent by 2050.

   A month earlier, Pacific Islands Forum Leaders declared a ‘weaker’ position than AOSIS, Oxfam and Greenpeace said in August.

   The Pacific Leaders call to action on Climate Change ‘called on states to cut their GHG emissions by at least 50 percent below 1990 levels by 20050.

   “One of our biggest challenges going to Copenhagen is – which way do we go? Do we go the Funafuti (Tuvalu) way or the Canberra (Australia) way, said Fei Tevi, representing the Pacific Alliance of NGO’s.

   “That is clearly our dilemma. Pacific Leaders in Cairns came out with their position quiet different to the AOSIS position.

   Tuvalu’s long time climate change negotiator, Ambassador Enele Sopoaga said his country remains committed to the AOSIS position.

   “Urgent and ambitious actions are needed now or there will be catastrophic impacts on small island states like Tuvalu.

   “Copenhagen should provide a legally binding and ambitious deal for us, if not, there will be serious threats to the lives of our people in small low lying islands. “We want to retain and strengthen the Kyoto Protocol instead of a new successor agreement.

   Mr Sopoaga said, “we have to build on the experiences and achievements of the Kyoto Protocol.’ “We will prefer an amended Kyoto Protocol with new commitment period of 2012 – 2017, said Mr Sopoaga.

   A new climate change deal is expected to be placed on the table when world leaders convene in Copenhagen, Denmark in 26 days for the United Nations Framework Convention o Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties meeting….PNS 

   Lice Movono ROVA
   Info/Comms Assistant
   Politics/Trade/Media Section
   European Union
   Delegation of the European Commission for the Pacific
   360 Victoria Parade, Suva, FIJI


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