UNITED Nations’ member states and stakeholders participating in the climate summit in New York has been strongly urged to take a holistic and appropriate steps towards addressing climate change issues.
Pacific Indigenous Peoples (PIP) made the statement before distinguished chairs, panelists and delegates with one voice for urgent action.
Solomon Islands Dr Samson Viulu who represented PIP said islanders become so concerned with the lack of any tangible progress made on climate change mitigation by member states since the expiry of the Kyoto protocol in 2012.
Dr Viulu stressed that it is saddening to note indigenous peoples have not been directly involved in the climate summit debate to make their voice heard.
“In the next few years, mass exoduses of islanders are projected. In fact a whole township, a first ever of its kind in the world is being relocated due to the direct effect of sea level rise.
“There is no other time than now that the people of the Pacific are faced with possible extinction due to climate change,” Dr Viulu said.
He said including indigenous peoples in the planning and implementation stages of the processes is vital with consideration given to the traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples.
Dr Viulu called on developed states to renew their commitment to mitigating climate change and allocating more technical and financial resources that will empower communities to adapt to the impacts of CC.
He said the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) should also focus on new mechanisms and structures that involve private sector/ multi-national companies and their role in protecting and enhancing the lives of indigenous communities.
“Support organic/ fair trade initiatives at small medium enterprise to national levels. As the engine of economic growth, the private sector, in the next set of SDGs, should take on more responsibility in this area.
“The SDGs should also touch upon trade agreements which will harm traditional knowledge and practices (incl. intellectual property) and ensure that states honor the outcome document and UNDRIP to ensure that indigenous communities are not disadvantaged from unfavorable trade agreements,” Dr Viulu added.
By DANIEL NAMOSUAIA