IF ever there was a time for Pacific countries to work together for the common good, it is now, with their very survival at risk. Two critical global events this month have highlighted the absolute need for the region to form a unified bloc which can effectively challenge global superpowers. For without a joint front, Pacific leaders will find that the metropolitan powers will be able to pick them off individually with extreme ease.
At COP21 – the world forum on Climate Change in Paris – and Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission in Bali, large powerful nations showed they had no mercy for Small Island Development States. Tuvaluan Prime Minister, Enele Sopoaga, publicly accused the United States of working towards dividing island leaders and threatening the survival of low-lying atolls. Sopoaga alleged that the US wanted a trade-off.
Instead of accepting the scientifically recommended and proposed 1.5 degrees Celsius temperature rise target, Washington offered a stand-alone loss and damage mechanism.