FIJI and the rest of the Pacific island states need climate scientists to tackle climate change and its effects.
Presenting effects and causes of climate change at a national summit in Labasa, USP Pacific scientist Elisabeth Holland said since 1992 global sea level had risen 55 mm (2.2 inches).
"It may sound small but it has had effects with rising sea water seeping into villages in our local communities," she said.
"We need to develop our own Pacific understanding of climate science and we need Fiji and Pacific Islands climate scientists."
Since 1850, sea level has risen from 200milimetres with scientists predicting it will rise to 2000mm by 2100. "The impact on the planet will last thousands of years. We need to work together on new creative solutions. Climate change is the greatest challenge of the century."
Ms Holland said planet warming was driven by human activity with greenhouse gas emissions from industrial and agricultural activity. Sea level is rising and more hurricanes are predicted. We need to understand the climate science, so that we can anticipate the risks and potential harm." Ms Holland urged stakeholders to work with the community for a way forward in dealing with climate change issues.
"Fiji uses minute fossil fuel and if we start now and change the direction. there are chances that our voices will be heard at the international level and a chance to move forward and work with the rest of world."