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Climate plea

Dawn Gibson From Apia, Samoa
Friday, August 29, 2014

THERE is a pressing need for more people to become involved in small — often seemingly inconvenient — activities such as switching off lights when not in use or walking to the shop instead of using a vehicle.

Because if there was one thing participants learned yesterday at the Pacific Media Assistance Scheme (PACMAS) pre-UN SIDS conference, it was that these small steps, when made by large groups of people, make a big difference.

Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Program (SPREP) climate change advisor Diane McFadzien yesterday said the potential impacts of more people taking small positive steps could be transformative in terms of the planet's climate plight.

"I think it would definitely be effective because every single step that anyone takes counts," she said.

"Even if every individual themselves in their own countries took small steps like just turning off their lights, it would have a large impact globally."

She said it was important people understood that in many circumstances, paying for the more expensive, more energy-efficient appliance could mean a great deal for the earth's survival.

"Another thing that people need to realise is that cost saving factor as well, like it might have cost them a little more initially to get it, but the payback period particularly in our region would be very fast.

"This is because for us, electricity is so expensive that our payback would actually be a lot shorter than for a country like Japan for instance.

"So I think with energy efficiency in particular, there are so many savings that could be made and it will definitely have an impact globally if every citizen just did that."

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