Posted inOpinion / Our region

Pacific Elders’ Voice statement in support of Vanuatu-led initiative seeking ICJ Advisory opinion on Climate Change

PEV support Vanuatu’s efforts to bring questions around the legal implications of climate change and call for urgent global actions to reduce GHG emissions

The Pacific Elders’ Voice (PEV) congratulates the Pacific Island Forum Leaders for their endorsement of Vanuatu’s initiative to secure an Advisory Opinion from the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the legal obligations of states in protecting the rights of current and future generations from the adverse of climate change.

PEV pays tribute to the dedication and resilience of the Pacific Islands Students Fighting Climate Change (PISFCC) for their advocacy, campaigns and unrelenting belief in their actions in support of climate justice and a safer, more equitable world for future generations.

Climate change, driven by anthropogenic emissions of greenhouses gases, is the defining challenge of our time, and must be urgently addressed. The PEV reiterates that climate change remains the single greatest threat to the livelihoods, security and wellbeing of the peoples of the Pacific, and to human communities worldwide, particularly the poorest and most vulnerable.

Pacific Island Countries (PICs) are among the most climate-vulnerable nations on earth, facing the most severe consequences of climate change – consequences that will only worsen in years to come. PICs have already been heavily affected by a host of climate-related disasters, including cyclones and other extreme weather events. Sea level rise has displaced entire communities and upended livelihoods across the region, while superstorms, droughts and wildfires wreak havoc the world over. These impacts of climate change are now also affecting the human rights of people everywhere. Most basic rights, such as those to life, health, water, sanitation etc. are among others that are being impacted as a result of climate change.

Addressing these impacts is a matter of survival.

“We support Vanuatu’s efforts at the UN General Assembly to bring questions around the legal implications of climate change, and call for urgent global actions to immediately reduce GHG emissions and provide new and additional support for adaptation to deal with the climate impacts.

“We applaud the Government of Vanuatu as well as the young people for their foresight in progressing this important initiative,” said a statement released by PEV leaders.

This opinion was originally published at PEV on 04 August 2022, reposted via PACNEWS.

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