Press release – San Borja (Lima Peru) 8 December 2014
Ambassador Makurita Baaro took the audience into a journey of reality, beginning with the show casing of a local climate change song and video clip by the Kiribati Climate Change Children’s Network, where the children of Kiribati plea to world leaders for climate justice.
She then told participants that while the islands will not disappear in the next decade or so, climate change has already taken a toll on the islands with coastal erosion, constant sea intrusion affecting water lens and water supplies, Government expenses on the rise to protect public infrastructure, and agricultural activities difficult from the onslaught of sea level rise coupled with poor in-fertile soil.
Our Government has taken every effort to adapt to these new realities, Ambassador Baaro says, now it is has launched a comprehensive joint implementation plan on climate change and disaster called the KJIP and is taking a whole of nation approach to tackle the problem as well as preparing for the worst case scenario in the future.
She adds the four-month old grouping of the most vulnerable countries called the coalition of low lying atoll nations on climate change – CANCC – is another undertaking by Government to leverage advocate and tell the story of the plight of peoples in small low lying countries like, Tuvalu, Maldives, Tokelau, Marshall Islands and Kiribati. Uniting to join forces to focus global attention on the plight of their people, these atoll nations are barely three meters above sea-water level. The CANCC inaugural meeting was held in Tarawa, Kiribati in July this year and is an open coalition inclusive of potential atoll islands including country and development partners genuinely interested in supporting their cause.
“It is no longer about who is to blame and what caused it?” she said. It is a common problem affecting us all and affecting our children and theirs. It is about working together, all of us within our capabilities, working together as good global citizens to address a major challenge to our one and only home…our Planet Earth”
‘We are the early warning system for the world, what’s going to happen to us will also happen to millions of people living in major coastal cities around the world, acting now is the only possible and most appropriate cause of action,’ she said.
Ambassador Baaro also took a time to acknowledge the continued partnership the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) has done to Kiribati in many different areas that have had impact on Kiribati’s effort to tackle climate change.
The Kiribati-ITRI join side event was also attended by a Parliamentary delegation from Taipei, Taiwan.