Solomon Islands pushes for Adaptation Fund beyond 2020

,

Island Sun Newspaper, Bonn, Germany

 Solomon Islands delegation to COP23 in Bonn

SOLOMON Islands and other Pacific Islands are pushing for the Climate Change Adaptation Fund to continue when the Kyoto Protocol lapses in 2020.

This is one of the main items Pacific Islands’ delegates are negotiating at the Conference of the Parties (COP23) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) currently underway in Bonn, Germany.

“Solomon Islands and other Pacific Islands countries are negotiating for the Adaptation Fund to continue when the Kyoto Protocol lapses and the Paris Agreement supersedes it in 2020,” said Mr Exley Taloiburi who is the Climate Change Finance Adviser for the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS).

Toloiburi explained that the Pacific Islands delegates wanted a specific change in the Paris Agreement: replace  "Should" with "Shall" in the clauses relating to the climate fund.

“In order to allow the continuity of the climate adaptation fund to address our climate change challenges,” Taloiburi said.

He noted that climate change adaptatio - not reducing its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions or mitigation - is the priority issue among the Pacific Island countries. “The Pacific Islands countries put together only emits 0.03 percent of GHG so it’s not an issue for us, explained Toloiburi.

“The global finance allocation is such that only 8 percent goes to adaptation whilst 92 percent to mitigation. So there is a huge mismatch and that is why we demanded that the adaptation fund to continue post 2020 when it will come into force. “We see this fund as the only dedicated fund to support concrete adaptation projects under UNFCCC.” Taloiburi said.

Solomon Islands has benefited from this fund under a special project called the 'Strogem Waka Lo Community Fo Kaikai' (SWoCK) which aims at enhancing resilience in the local communities of Solomon Islands against the adverse effects of climate change on their food security and agriculture.

The five year project which began in April 2011 was allocated US$5,533,500 

According to Taloiburi,  Papua New Guinea, Cook Islands and Samoa have also benefited from this international fund that finances projects and programs aimed at helping developing countries to adapt to the harmful effects of climate change.

Negotiations at the COP23 will end today before heads of government that are parties to the UNFCCC adopt the outcome of this annual climate change summit at the end of the week.

Poland will host COP24 in 2018.