페이지 정보Write 관리자 Date15-09-09 11:29 Hit2,200
This past August 27 10 a.m., the President of Kiribati, H.E. Anote Tong, gave a lecture at climate forum entitled “The Climate is our future” at Seoul City Hall. The event was sponsored by Seoul City.
The forum kicked off with a video presentation called “Promises of Seoul for climate change,” followed by “A letter from Kiribati” made by the Sunhak Peace Prize Committee.
Afterwards the Seoul Mayor, H.W. Won-Soon Park, welcomed the audience through a video. Mayor Park introduced the Seoul civic awareness on climate change and promised to actively participate in creating a solution. Next, Co-President Yeol Choi of the environmental foundation ‘Climate Action’ delivered his Welcoming Address, followed by National Assembly members Je Nam Kim and Ha Na Chang’s Congratulatory Addresses.
President Tong was greeted with loud applause as he walked on stage. His Excellency introduced the difficulties surrounding Kiribati due to climate change, and emphasized that “It is not a future threat but an ongoing problem,” and that it is no longer only an issue for small island countries such as his.
Recently, the superpowers including the U.S. have positively changed their stance toward climate change to one that is more developmental, but emphasized that there is still a long road ahead and urged for more immediate action.
Pres. Tong explained his “Migration with Dignity” relocation program for his people at risk of becoming climate refugees, as well his marine conservation activities, namely creating the Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA) and the Pacific Oceanscape framework.
Pres. Tong reiterated that both countries and individuals alike all need to switch from a mere “perception” of climate change to a more aggressive “action” oriented mindset.
After his lecture, the audience had a chance to ask him questions. One student asked Pres. Tong “What made you create the Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA) while forgoing financial benefits to your country?”
Pres. Tong replied, “Although we had to sacrifice our key source of national income coming from ocean resources, through designating the Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA), we hoped to provide the momentum needed offset change in the international community’s awareness of climate change,” he answered. The audience largely seemed to be impressed by Pres. Tong’s decisive action.
As the question and answer session ended, the next session was a talk concert.
One audience said, “I was astonished because many young students are interested in climate change. I wish the government would be more interested in the environmental issues and provide policies.”