Focus on the transport sector

The bumper to bumper traffic jam at Makoi Nasinu during the peak hour. Picture: FILE/RAMA

DELAYS in incorporating the transport sector into Pacific nationally determined contributions will not only delay the decarbonisation process, but could also undermine the diplomatic leverage of the Pacific Island countries in demanding action from nations responsible for much larger shares of carbon emissions.

This was highlighted by the University of the South Pacific as it announced that it will be hosting the Pacific Islands Transport Forum and Expo from November 8 – 10, 2018 to mark its 50th anniversary and to further the discussion on decarbonisation of the transport sector in the Pacific in support of the 1.5 degree climate goal.

It said during the forum government representatives would review the current status of the transport sector in the region, define national targets for transport emissions reductions in the 2030 and 2050 timeframes, and begin developing pathways towards achieving these targets.

The university believes that for each country, steps toward understanding the contribution of the transport sector (including land, sea, and air) to national GHG emissions will be identified, and government representatives will have the opportunity to engage with the private sector, development partners, and regional and international organisations.

According to the statement the event will be co-chaired by Fiji as the host nation and the Republic of the Marshall Islands as the first Pacific Island Country to integrate transport targets into its NDCs.

It said other partners included the COP23 Presidency, Asian Development Bank, Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), and International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF), and Pacific Community (SPC) and UN agencies, among others.

Such an event is being organised since PICs recently took on a global leadership role in addressing climate change impacts, hence it is imperative that each country’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) address all sectors that generate greenhouse gas emissions.