Miss Solomon Islands Camilla Grossmith says women can be agent of change to make our environment a better place to live.
This was highlighted in her speech at the 30th Miss Pacific Islands in Apia, Samoa, Friday, where she was second runner-up in the show.
Camilla, who spoke on the topic “The Environment”, said most of the population in the Pacific depend on the environment for living but there are environmental issues which women can help to address.
She highlighted that as Pacific islanders everyone shared a common interest on the use of the natural resources.
“We depend on the environment however, in the ever changing of the world we live today, the environmentcontinues to be a massive experimental ground where we fuel our carbon footprints, dump our rubbishand exploit our resources from,”she said.
She said too often we take more than we need from the environment and consequently impose more harm than good.
Camilla said it is important we consider certain environmental issues we face and address them with tangible solutions.
She said one of the environment issues that we need to address is the negative impact of logging on the environment and its inhabitants.
She said in Solomon Islands 70 percent of primary commercial forest resources have been logged.
Camilla acknowledged that logging contributed to about 60 percent of the economy of the country but 90 percent of the time the landowners did not receive a fair share.
“With this environment issues women can take the initiative to empower their communities to earn income without exploiting their resources and their environment,” Camilla said.
She said a fine example of such initiative is work done by Women Encouragement Award Dr Alice Pollard’s savings and lending scheme which helped hundreds of local women to save money.
She said the women group have saved over a million dollars over a period of two years and they were able to support their families without exploiting the environment.
“Women can also take such initiatives like making recycling bags and other paper based products to discourage people from buying and using plastic products and dumping them in the ocean and land.”
She said women can be agents for change by using their charisma and influence to provide awareness programmes for their communities about sea level rise and adaptation methods to adopt and survive in the face of adversity.
Camilla said she is convinced that women can contribute substantially to making our environment a better place to live.
By CHARLES KADAMANA