Fiji Time: 12:19 PM on Tuesday 1 December

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Climate change challenge

Repeka Nasiko
Saturday, June 21, 2014

PACIFIC Islands Development Forum chairman Prime Minister Rear Admiral (Ret) Voreqe Bainimarama has expressed the region's collective disappointment at the international community's failure to address the challenges that Pacific islanders face because of climate change.

Rear Admiral (Ret) Bainimarama said the rising sea levels caused by global warming threatened the existence of some of Fiji's regional neighbours like Kiribati, Tuvalu and Marshall Islands.

He said the collective will of the global community to adequately address this crisis was receding.

"This is certainly the case in our own region, where the election of the new government in Australia last September has seen a distinct change of rhetoric about cutting carbon emissions," he said at the Second Summit for the PIDF in Nadi.

"I appeal to Australia and other countries not to behave selfishly over the catastrophic prospect facing small island developing states.

"History will judge you harshly if you abandon us to our apparent fate of sinking below the waves because you don't want to make the necessary adjustment to your domestic policies."

The PIDF Summit ended on Denarau yesterday.

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