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For Immediate Release: Small Islands Call For Urgency in Warsaw in Wake of Deadly Typhoon

on November 11, 2013

Warsaw, Poland—At the opening of the latest round of United Nations climate change talks here, where the negotiations open against the backdrop of yet another tragic climatic event, the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), a coalition of island and low-lying coastal nations that are among the most highly vulnerable to climate change impacts, called on the international community to act urgently to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions responsible for the crisis and laid out key priorities for the talks.Olai Ngedikes, lead negotiator of AOSIS, released the following statement on behalf of the group:

“The tragic aftermath of Supertyphoon Haiyan, one of the most powerful storms in history, serves as a stark reminder of the cost of inaction on climate change and should serve to motivate our work in Warsaw.

“Science has confirmed that unless we begin to reduce emissions immediately, the opportunity to keep global warming below the critical 1.5 degree threshold could be irrevocably lost.

“It is with that urgency in mind that we proposed a plan under ADP Workstream 2 that would complement the negotiations with a new line of talks focused squarely on implementing solutions to the crisis—a novel idea for this process.

“In fact, AOSIS has brought renewable energy experts from each of our member regions—the Caribbean, AIMS, and Pacific regions—to share stories about solutions that are going a long way to reduce emissions in their countries, while at the same time bringing the benefits of greater energy security and economic savings.

“We think broadening this kind of discussion—by bringing together leading experts from governments, the private sector and civil society that are actually implementing solutions—will give parties confidence that they can, in fact, do what is necessary to address the crisis. It also provides an opportunity for developed countries to show leadership by examining the solutions available to reduce their own emissions and mobilizing the finance necessary to get the job done.

“Finally, it has become clear that there are now impacts from climate change that can no longer be avoided: It therefore essential that we establish an international mechanism on loss and damage here in Warsaw and address this crisis for once and all.”
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CONTACT: Contact: Michael Crocker, michael.crocker@aosis.org, + 1 978 968 9499
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