BY KATIE - MYGREENPOD, 04 Aug '19

Nadi Bay Declaration calls for emergency-scale response and rapid coal phase-out

A ‘climate crisis’ has been declared in a special session during the 5th Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF) Leaders’ Summit and first Conference, echoing the global movement declaring a ‘climate emergency.’

The PIDF Leaders’ Summit had representation from 10 of the 14 member states, which are among those most at risk to climate breakdown. They include Fiji, the Solomon Islands and Timor Leste.

Regional institutions such as the Pacific Islands Association of NGOs, the Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation (PIPSO) and the University of the South Pacific (USP) were also represented.

A ‘visionary declaration’

‘This declaration makes clear that the current scale of the climate crisis calls for urgent action to phase out coal and other fossil fuels’, said Fenton Lutunatabua, regional managing director of 350.org in the Pacific.

‘This visionary declaration is a testament to the will of the Pacific people who have moved their politicians to show committed actions in confronting the climate crisis’, Fenton continued. ‘The collective futures of Pacific peoples depends on us being able to push back against the fossil fuel industry fuelling this climate crisis, and towards equitable and just solutions centred on people – this is what is at the heart of this important international statement.’

Calls for an urgent response

The Nadi Bay Declaration on the Climate Change Crisis in the Pacific was tabled to members and outlined proposed actions to urgently increase efforts to respond to the climate crisis.

It recognises ‘the urgent responsibility and moral obligation of fossil fuel producers to lead in putting an end to fossil fuel development and to manage the decline of existing production and the need to ensure the phase-out of coal power to achieve the Paris climate goals.’

The declaration calls on:

  • The global community to take serious action to urgently address the warnings of the IPCC Special Report on the dire consequences of lack of urgent actions to address climate change and sea-level rise.
  • Coal producers to immediately cease any new mining of coal and develop a strategy for a decadal phase-out and closure of all existing coal production.
  • All parties to take immediate measures to relinquish the subsidies to fossil fuel production and use and support a transition to appropriate and affordable technologies.
  • All parties to welcome the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C, and the upcoming Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate and the Special Report on Climate Change and Land by the 25th UNFCCC Conference of Parties to meet in Santiago Chile on 2-13 December 2019.
  • Relevant parties to the Kyoto Protocol to refrain from using ‘carryover credits’ as abatement for the additional Paris Agreement emissions reduction targets (seen as a blunt political statement to the Australian Government which is considering using this accounting trick).