By Cherelle Jackson, Pacific Communications Team, Poznan, Poland
Sunday: December 07, 2008
The African islands of Seychelles today said they identified more with the threats facing Pacific islands due to climate change, more so than their own neighbours.
“The Seychelles and Maldives are similar to the Pacific islands, we have the same fears,” says Seychelles Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ronny Jumeau.
“We will lose 60 percent of our islands due to sea level rise, most of our neighbours do not have atolls. Although we are part of the same family we do not feel it. They do not speak the same way I do when it comes to climate change,” Jumeau said.
Speaking at the Development and Climate Days side event at the Conference of the Parties (COP) 14 in Poznan, Poland, Jumeau said his country fully supports the stance of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) in demanding more proactive actions from developed countries.
Chief Bill Erasmus of the Arctic Athabaskan Council, and representative of the Indigenous people’s movement says that preconceived imagery of countries affected by climate change does not help the cause.
“When you think of the arctic you think of the melting ice caps and the polar bears, you don’t really think of the people whose lives are going to change as a result,” Erasmus said.
According to him indigenous people like those of the Pacific stand to lose more than their homes as a result of climate change – cultures and ancestoral ties are at stake too.