President Addresses European Leaders on Climate Change at European Development Days
Palikir, Pohnpei (FSM Information Services): October 26, 2009 - Stockholm, Sweden-October 26, 2009- President Emanual Mori addressed European and other world leaders on the issue of climate change during the Fourth 'European Development Days' Conference held in Stockholm Sweden during the past week. This year's three day Conference focused on three primary development issues facing the planet: the global economic downturn, democracy and development, and climate change.
In his address, President Mori stated that he chose to accept the invitation of the Presidents of the European Union and the European Commission to attend the Conference and speak on the issue of climate change because "My country is on the verge of drowning." As the President of a small island nation, President Mori indicated that he represented the interests of the most vulnerable nations of the world, but also the future health of the planet. Small island nations were also represented at the conference by Edward Natapei, Prime Minister of Vanuatu.
In his representation of the most vulnerable nations, the President stated that, "within just a few generations, we have become the front line of a global crisis that threatens not only our water supplies, our agricultural productivity and our ocean resources, but also our very existence." In this regard, President Mori spoke of the recent title surge in Micronesia that inundated atolls less than a meter above sea level, flooding taro patches, destroying crops and polluting drinking water, all which demonstrated "just how powerless we are to stem the coming tide of global warming." President Mori consequently warned that the people of the planet "must change our lifestyles and learn to consume less of our planet's resources or we will be overcome by our own gluttony."
The President noted that even with appropriate mitigation efforts, the impact of climate change will still adversely impact small island nations and therefore stressed that the developed nations of the world must move forward in funding an Adaptation Fund through dedicated and predictable bilateral and multilateral funding mechanisms.
In his conclusion, the President encouraged developed and developing nations alike to 'Seal the Deal' during the upcoming 15th Conference of the Parties to be held in Copenhagen, Denmark in December of this year and put into place a climate change agreement for the future which adequately replaces the Kyoto Protocol.
During his stay in Stockholm, President Mori met with the President of the European Union, Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt and the President of the European Commission, Manuel Barroso, with whom he discussed not only the issues of climate change, but also the FSM's initiatives to respond to climate change, biodiversity losses throughout Micronesia, and the world and the global impacts of greenhouse gasses.
The President cited the Micronesia Challenge and the proposed Micronesia Center for a Sustainable Future as critical response measures to these environmental issues and stressed that assistance from the European Union, as well as its European member states, was imperative for the development of the capacity of the FSM and the Micronesia region to global environmental issues that were not of the making of the FSM or other partner countries in his region.
During his stay in Sweden, the President was interviewed, along with the Vice President of the European Commission, by Al Jazeera News. He was also interviewed by Italian news. During his stay in Sweden, President Mori had an audience with Swedish Crown Princess Victoria.
On his travels to Sweden, President Mori stopped in Tokyo and met with former Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori on his way to the Conference. The President reported on the progress of the Pohnpei Airport runway extension and offered his thanks to the Prime Minister for his past and on-going assistance in moving forth economic assistance from Japan to the FSM.
The President was accompanied on his trip to Sweden by Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Lorin Robert, Director of SBOC, Fabian Nimea, Special Advisor to SBOC, Larry Goddard and Conchita Taitano of Guam EPA.
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