Coal hurting us, says Bainimarama

FIJI has told Australia to shift away from coal and fossil fuels because climate change is hurting Pacific island nations.
Coal hurting us, says Bainimarama Coal hurting us, says Bainimarama Coal hurting us, says Bainimarama Coal hurting us, says Bainimarama Coal hurting us, says Bainimarama

Frank and Mary Bainimarama COP21

Staff Reporter

Australia must not put the interests of a single industry above the lives of Pacific nations battling climate change, Prime Minster Scott Morrison was told, according to a report by Australian television news service SBS.
Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama made the remarks at an official dinner to mark a newly announced partnership between the nations.
He said the only way to guarantee the survival of Pacific island countries was for Australia to shift away from fossil fuels.
"I urged your predecessor repeatedly to honour his commitment to clean energy," Bainimarama said at the function in Suva.
"From where we are sitting, we cannot imagine how the interests of any single industry can be placed above the welfare of Pacific peoples and vulnerable people in the world over.
"Rising seas threaten whole communities, forcing them to endure the trauma of relocating from land they've endured for generations.
"Fijian farmers are watching their crops perish in soil that has been spoiled by the heightened salinity that is associated with sea level rise."
Bainimarama said the evidence of climate change was clear in the disappearing coastlines in Bangladesh and worsening flooding in the US.
"And in Australia as well, where soaring temperatures have reached record highs in several major cities just this week.
"This cannot be written off as a difference of opinion.
"Consensus from the scientific community is clear and the existential threat posed to Pacific island countries is certain."
Morrison responded in his speech, praising Bainimarama for Fiji's global leadership on climate change.
"I pay respect in particular to Mr Bainimarama's international leadership on climate change and oceans," Morrison said.
"You have heard him speak passionately about this-this evening and it was that same passion he took into the leadership of the COP process over the past 12 months."
In Vanuatu earlier last week, Morrison promised Pacific nations Australia would directly fund projects tackling the impact of climate change.