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Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on July 14th, 2010
by Pincas Jawetz (PJ@SustainabiliTank.com)

Pacific Islands Roundtable for Nature Conservation Meets in Samoa.

BY PACIFIC REGIONAL ENVIRONMENT PROGRAMME.
Honiara, 15 July 2010

Press Release – “Climate Solutions: Invest in Biodiversity” is the theme of the thirteenth gathering of the Pacific Islands Round Table for Nature Conservation that opened in Samoa this morning.

The coalition of nature conservation partners works to improve collaboration and coordination towards effective conservation action in the Pacific region.

Close to 100 participants will discuss effective biodiversity conservation as the key frontline response to climate change.

Opening the meeting at the Development Bank Building in Apia today, the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment of the Government of Samoa, Hon. Faumuina Tiatia Liuga asked that participants not only focus on climate change but also recognise the importance of other environment concerns such as biodiversity conservation.

“While climate change is perceived as a hot topic on the international agenda, don’t lose sight of other environment issues in our region. Nature conservation is important and it is linked to our cultures and traditions.”

2010 is the International Year of Biodiversity which underlies the importance of the meeting of the Pacific islands roundtable for nature conservation. Nations around the world are expected to have met key international targets for biodiversity loss as agreed to by Heads of State at the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable development to halt biodiversity loss by 2010. The Pacific has adopted the theme “Value Biodiversity – It’s our Life” to celebrate this year.

Mr. Taholo Kami, Chair of the Pacific Islands Roundtable for Nature Conservation and IUCN Oceania Regional Director, welcomed participants to the regional meeting and urged them to also celebrate good conservation efforts in the region.

“We haven’t come close to reaching the 2010 target to have a declining biodiversity loss and climate change hovers as a threat and challenges us as Pacific islanders with our livelihoods and as conservationists. From this meeting we should have exciting outcomes as we look at the link between biodiversity and conservation and take time to learn from each other in the region. “

Pacific Islands Roundtable for Nature Conservation partners have been encouraged to sign a charter outlining their commitment to the 2008 to 2010 Action Strategies and Principles adopted at the 8th Pacific Nature Conservation and Protected Areas conference held in Alotau, Papua New Guinea in 2007. 13 key partners have now signed this charter.

This week the 2010 Round Table meeting aims at setting longer term priorities for the next 10 years which will be consolidated to develop as priorities for the next Action Strategy for 2013 to 2017. The role of biodiversity as a climate change solution may be reflected in the coming priorities.

Mr David Sheppard the Director of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) during his keynote speech on Climate change and Natural solutions outlined that effective biodiversity conservation is the key frontline response to climate change.

“We need to develop more effective links between climate change and biodiversity as well as Pacific solutions to Pacific problems. Nature based solutions to climate change should be given more emphasis.”

The conference ends on Friday with a presentation of meeting outcomes and resolutions. Participants are meeting in the Development Bank of Samoa in Apia and they represent nature conservation and development organisations, governments, inter-government, donor agencies, Pacific governments and community groups with an interest in Nature Conservation.

Source: www.sprep.org/article/news_detail.asp?id=797

 www.solomontimes.com/news.aspx?nw…

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Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on July 13th, 2010
by Pincas Jawetz (PJ@SustainabiliTank.com)

Wednesday, July 07, 2010 10:31 AM
Bottom-UP- Approach
BY GEORGE SAEMANE FROM HONIARA

 www.solomontimes.com/letter.aspx?…
Thank you Dr. Tara for your analytical and thought provoking article that painted the true picture of the last four years.

I pledge no addition or edition of your opinion but simply to ask those who are intending to contest the next election not to hide behind politic rhetoric to confuse the voters to vote for you.

Please give us a clear definition of how our villages are going to included in your plan and do not cover it with pictures of utopia because we know things will get tougher.

We want people who can distinguish between their entitlements and public money.

Marginalization of the villages in meaningful development of villages is an old issue, we have hoped to instill change in the previous elections but failed.

Most new MPs who we banked on were caught unprepared by, gold, glory and you name it.

In this election the loudest voice calling for change are the existing politicians and they are doing this by forming Political Parties left, right and center. Is this not a political ploy to divid us to vote them in, only to find that they throw their different colors and wear the same coats we see in the last house?

Old times we know your works and some a below satisfactory, you have nothing to prove cause your history has already proven who you are and what you are capable of doing.

New Kids on the Block, please if you are going to represent us then go in and do not be lured by power,money and entertainment. We want our villages to have good water supply, sanitation, improved housing, road systems and skills to run our canteens, grow our cocoa, coconut plantations etc. We want to be players in the economic activities in this nation.

We believe you have enough money to achieve the above in the next 12 years if our friend in need and indeed Taiwan continues t help us

Please do not confuse us in the name of dialogue by linking us with the Arab league, they have enough internal problems. Please do not allow us to bear part of their problem. History has shown over and over again that money is linked to human resource.

Old Timers there is still time for you to change your attitudes to deserve our votes. There is room for improvements

New candidates you must be a changed person to induce change . For we can only offer what we have.

Let us forget about “Bottom up Approach”, Rural Advancement” and Rural Development to talk more about Village Development, after all Solomon Islands is made up of villages.

God Bless our villages and Solomon Islands.

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Wednesday, July 07, 2010 8:21 PM
Green Party Charter
BY PAUL DRAKE FROM NEW ZEALAND

 www.solomontimes.com/letter.aspx?…
Dear Editor; a couple of weeks ago I wrote to the Solomon Times suggesting that a Solomon Island Green Party be formed.

I have had quite a few enquiries for the Green Party (NZ) constitution from Solomon Islanders in Brisbane, Wellington Taiwan and Japan and I hope they take the initiative and form a SIGP by the next election.

I have read a very good letter from Travis Kalione advising voters to steer clear of candidates making promises. I agree promises are cheap!

Those standing for parliament, however should state very clearly what they stand for; eg. Labour or business etc.
“A man who does not stand for something.
Will fall for anything”
G.K. Chesterton.

This is the Aotearoa New Zealand Charter:

The charter is the founding document of the Green Party of Aotearoa , New Zealand.

The Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand accepts Te Tiriti o Waitangi [The Treaty of Waitangi] as the founding document of Aotearoa NZ; recognises Maori as Tangata Whenua in Aotearoa NZ; and commits to the following four principles.
[Tangata Whenua; means the 1st people of the land]

Ecological Wisdom:
The basis of ecological wisdom is that human beings are a part of the natural world.
This world is finite, therefore unlimited material growth is impossible. Ecological sustainability is paramount.

Social Responsibility:
Unlimited material growth is impossible; therefore the key to social responsibility is the just distribution of social and natural resourses, both locally and globally.

Appropriate Decision Making:
For the implementation of ecological wisdom and social responsibility, decisions will be made directly at the appropriate level by those affected.

Non Violence:
Non violent conflict resolution is the process by which ecological wisdom, social responsibility and appropriate decision making will be implemented. This principle applies at all levels.

The above is the Greens philosophy in a nut shell, the constitution is an elaboration of the above.

The Charter is simply a declaration of what a party or individual stands for.

The above document can be used as a good yard stick to measure the other parties in the coming election.

Any more inquiries are welcome you can e-mail me at ekard at slingshot.co.nz

God bless

Paul Drake

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Tuesday, July 13, 2010 10:20 AM
SI Independence Celebrated in Adelaide, South Australia
BY APOLLOS KALIALAHA IN ADELAIDE

The highlights on the occasion were the Warriors welcome performed by the community’s men and the community’s Children singing the two National Anthems of Solomon Islands and Australia.

The Solomon Islands Community in Adelaide, South Australia, has celebrated the Solomon Islands 32nd Independence Day on the 10th July, 2010.

It was a real Pacific Island atmosphere, as those took part and attended included friends from Fiji, Papua New Guinea, North Solomons, Tuvalu and Tongan communities. Others were friends, in-laws and Ex-RAMSI officers.

The two special guests on the occasion were the South Australian Lieutenant Governor Mr Hieu Van Le and the Solomon Islands High Commissioner to Australia His Excellency Mr. Beraki Gino. The Governor in his speech spoke highly of the effort that the Solomon Islands community has put together to register their community in the Multicultural Community of South Australia.

In his capacity as Chairman of South Australian Multicultural and Ethnic Affairs Commission, the Governor has pledged his support for the Solomon Islands Community just as any newly formed community in South Australia. Solomon Islands High Commission to Australia His Excellency Mr. Beraki Gino has congratulated the group and thanked them for inviting him to this historical event.

“Because this is the first official event the community has hosted since becoming a community last year, it was indeed an honor to be part of the celebration,” he said.

As guest of honor he cut the Solomon Islands birthday cake, kindly donated by a PNG family who are very close to the SI community. The High Commissioner hosted a breakfast with the Solomon Islands community before catching his flight back to Canberra the next day.

The highlights on the occasion were the Warriors welcome performed by the community’s men and the community’s Children singing the two National Anthems of Solomon Islands and Australia. Food for the night was an Island dinner menu, something that really impressed most of the guests.

President of the Solomon Islands Wantok Association of South Australia, Apollos Kalialaha thanked the Solomon Islands community and guests for their attendance.

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Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on August 16th, 2008
by Pincas Jawetz (PJ@SustainabiliTank.com)

WIP on our website means WORK (WRITING) IN PROGRESS – or simply unfinished article. When finished the WIP will be taken off but the article will stay in place without the UPDATED designation. Nevertheless, theses introductory lines will remain as a reminder that the article had a long birth.

***

The meeting, August 15, 2008 was chaired by the Ambassador For Palau. Present were also the Ambassadors from Nauru and from Fiji. Many other Missions were represented – some of these missions have representatives on the working committee. Involved are also some of the active NGOs.

At present the sponsors of a resolution to be brought before the UN General Assembly are 11 from among the 14 Pacific Small Island Developing States – Fiji, Marshall Islands, The Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu; the Maldives and Seychelles from non-Pacific SIDS; Canada, the Philippines from among larger States. But these 15 States will pick up many more co-sponsors. Mentioned were Turkey, the EU, Austria and Iceland that have expressed their eagerness to join. There is no opposition we were told – but only some hesitation because it is seen as a new approach to the problem of the humanitarian impact of climate change that goes on already – this while in major UN institutions the debate has not led yet to action. The inhabitants of the small islands of the Pacific are the first to lose their habitat – and what we see is the eradication of UN Member States by this predictable catastrophe.

On our website we announced this encounter between the proponents of the resolution and the NGOs:

Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on August 15th, 2008
by Pincas Jawetz (PJ@SustainabiliTank.com)We also pointed out the topically relevant event at the Lincoln Center’s “Mostly Mozart Festival” when Lemi Ponifasio’s REQUIEM had its two evenings before a New York audience.The history of this special effort by the Pacific SIDS started on February 15, 2008, in a speech by Ambassador Stuart Beck of Palau, before the UN General Assembly:www.palauun.org/news_archive.cfm?news_id=189Palau Calls for Security Council Action to Protect Island Nations From Sea-Level Rise.

NEW YORK, NY,  www.islandsfirst.org February 15, 2008 — Addressing the General Assembly of the United Nations at the High Level Debate on Climate Change, H.E. Stuart Beck, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Palau, citing the “life or death” nature of sea-level rise for the world’s island nations, urged the Security Council to utilize its powers under Chapter VII of the UN Charter to address this threat to member states by imposing mandatory greenhouse gas emission standards on all member states, and utilizing the power to sanction, if necessary, to encourage compliance with such standards.

He said:
“The waters continue to rise in Palau, and everywhere else…Though this litany of disasters has become well known in these halls, no action with remedial consequences has been taken…We take this opportunity to respectfully call upon the Security Council to react to the threat which we describe. Would any nation facing an invading army not do the same?”

States reacted swiftly to the statement. This week, Ambassadors are meeting in New York to draft a General Assembly Resolution requesting Security Council intervention to prevent an aggravation of the climate change situation caused by greenhouse gas emissions by states. Pacific Island states will be in the forefront of the effort, since they are both the most vulnerable states, and amongst the least responsible for the problem.

Last year, the Security Council debated the security implications of climate change. Its then President, Foreign Minister Margaret Beckett of the United Kingdom, affirmed that climate change is a threat to “our collective security in a fragile and increasingly interdependent world”. Chapter VII of the UN Charter conveys to the Security Council the necessary tools to address the problem, as it has done so in recent years in connection with terrorism and HIV/AIDS. No other international body has the power to mandate change in an effort to save the threatened island cultures of the world.

The full text of Ambassador Beck’s remarks at the UN Climate Change debate is as follows:

“Mr. President, esteemed colleagues, friends:

The waters continue to rise in Palau, and everywhere else. Salinization of fresh water and formerly productive lands continues apace. The reefs, the foundation of our food chain, experience periodic bleaching and death. Throughout the Pacific, sea level rise has not only generated plans for the relocation of populations, but such relocations are actually in progress. Though this litany of disasters has become well known in these halls, no action with remedial consequences has been taken. Larger countries can build dikes, and move to higher ground. This is not feasible for the small island states who must simply stand by and watch their cultures vanish.

Is the United Nations simply powerless to act in the face of this threat to the very existence of many of its member states? We suggest that it is not.

Last April, under the Presidency of the United Kingdom, the Security Council took up the issue of climate change. At that time, while there were some expressions of discomfort with the venue of the debate, a discomfort which we decidedly did not share, there was general agreement with the notion expressed by the President of the Security Council, UK Foreign Minister Margaret Beckett that climate change is a threat to “our collective security in a fragile and increasingly interdependent world”.

Islands are not the only countries whose existence is threatened. Ambassador Kaire Mbuende of Namibia characterized climate change as a ” a matter of life or death” for his country, observing that ” the developing countries in particular, have been subjected to what could be described as low-intensity biological or chemical warfare. Greenhouse gases are slowly destroying plants, animals and human beings.”

Speaking on behalf of the Pacific Island Forum at last years Security Council debate Ambassador Robert Aisi, of Papua New Guinea observed that climate change is no less a threat to small island states than the dangers of guns and bombs to larger countries. Pacific Island countries are likely to face massive dislocations of people, similar to flows sparked by conflict, and such circumstances will generate as much resentment, hatred and alienation as any refugee crisis.

Ambassador Aisi observed then, and we reiterate now, that it is the Security Council which is charged with protecting human rights and the integrity and security of States. The Security Council is empowered to make decisions on behalf of all States to take action on threats to international peace and security. While we applaud the efforts of the President of the General Assembly and the Secretary General to shine a light on this awful problem, we take this opportunity to respectfully call upon the Security Council to react to the threat which we describe. Would any nation facing an invading army not do the same?

Under Article 39 of the Charter, the Security Council “shall determine the existence of any threat to peace…and shall make recommendations…to maintain or restore international peace or security”. We call upon the Security Council to do this in the context of climate change.

Under Articles 40 and 41 of the Charter, it is the obligation of the Security Council to “prevent an aggravation of the situation” and to devise appropriate measures to be carried out by all States to do this. While we Small Island states do not have all the answers, we are not unmindful of the scientific certainty that excessive greenhouse gas emissions by states are the cause of this threat to international security and the existence of our countries. We therefore suggest that the Security Council should consider the imposition of mandatory emission caps on all states and use its power to sanction in order to encourage compliance.

We further propose that under Article 11 of the Charter, the General Assembly is empowered to call to the attention of the Security Council “situations which are likely to endanger international peace and security” and, at the appropriate time, we will call upon this body to do so. In the event that the General Assembly chooses not to avail itself of this right, then we will call upon the countries whose very existence is threatened to utilize Article 34 of the Charter, which empowers each Member State to bring to the attention of the Security Council any issue which “might lead to international friction”.
I think we can all agree that international friction is a mild term to describe the terrible plight in which the island nations now find themselves.

Our Charter provides a way forward. Our Security Council has the wisdom and the tools to address this situation. And while we debate, the waters are rising.

Thank you.”

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