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   Government of the Republic of Fiji

  Ministry of Foreign Affairs

    A Better Fiji through Excellence in Foreign Service

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Media Release

Fiji to address UN Oceans Program

3rd December, 2011, Durban, South Africa: Fiji has been invited to address the Oceans Day event at Durban today as part of the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the 7th Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties (CMP7) to the Kyoto Protocol that has been meeting in Durban, South Africa from 28th November to 9th December 2011.

Luke

Fiji’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York Mr. Luke Daunivalu will address the Climate Change Response Expo as part of a high level panel of international experts on, “Oceans and Climate Issues in Small Island Developing States.”

This is the third Oceans Day at a UNFCCC Conference of the Parties. The Global Ocean Forum has previously organized at Copenhagen at the UNFCCC COP 15, on December14, 2009 (first-ever Oceans Day organized at a UNFCCC COP) and at Cancun at the UNFCCC COP 16, on December 4, 2010.

Oceans Day at Durban will draw high-level attention to ocean issues at the climate talks at COP 17 in Durban. Oceans Day will highlight the directlink between climate change, the health of the oceans, and human well-being, as well as the need for sufficient funding to support bold mitigation and adaptation measures that will minimize climate change impacts on coastal communities and ocean ecosystems and resources.Oceans Day at Durban will highlight the importance of linking the COP17 deliberations to the Rio+20 Conference to achieve a significant ocean outcome. The objectives of the program are:

• Raise awareness of the central role of oceans in global climate processes, and the fact that coastal and island communities are at the frontline of climate change, and will suffer disproportionate impacts from climate change, e.g. ocean warming, sea level rise, extreme weather events, and ocean acidification;

• Support the development of a coastal and ocean caucus of countries and support the countries in efforts to bring the ocean and coasts issues into the UNFCCC negotiations on mitigation, adaptation, financing, and capacity development/technology transfer.

The Fiji Delegation to COP17 is led by the Permanent Secretary for Local Government, Urban Development, Housing and Environment, Mrs. TainaTagicakibau and includes the Acting Deputy Secretary Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation Mr. PenijaminiLomaloma, Director Environment Mr. Jope Davetanivalu, Director Meteorology Mr. AlipateWaqaicelua, Deputy Permanent Representative of Fiji to the UN Mr Luke Daunivalu, Deputy Consevator of Forests MrSamuelaLagataki, Dr Helena des Combes of USP, Lami Town Council CEO Ms Preeya Ieli, Ms. AlisiPulini Climate Change Officer Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation, including Fiji’s High Commissioner to South Africa Mr. Ben Salacakau.  The Minister for Local Government, Urban Development, Housing and Environment Colonel Samuela Saumatua will be joining the Delegation later when the Higher Level Sessions begin the following week.

(Photo caption: Fiji’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York, Mr. Luke Daunivalu)