Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama speaking at the UN Ocean Conference on behalf of the Pacific Islands Forums in Lisbon Portugal. [Source: Frank Bainimarama / Twitter]
Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has again put the world on notice telling leaders that we face two possible futures, one in which our ocean becomes our greatest opportunity, and the other in which it is degraded beyond recognition.
Speaking during the UN Ocean Conference on behalf of the Pacific Islands Forums in Lisbon Portugal, Bainimarama says the ocean is the planet’s healthiest set of lungs yet the least funded of all SDGs.
He stressed that if nothing is done now, the consequences will be inevitable.
The Prime Minister said that he also hopes to see an ambitious, legally-binding Treaty of the High Seas next month.
Bainimarama said to stem the tidal wave of unregulated pollution crashing at our shores, they too look forward to the upcoming negotiations for a global treaty of plastics.
He stressed they totally condemn any threat of ocean dumps of nuclear waste as this would be both catastrophic and horribly traumatic for the Pacific people who still suffer from the nuclear testing inflicted on our region.
The Prime Minister stated that Fiji has the will to put resources behind the most far-reaching transformation in our history.
Bainimarama said Fiji has already banned deep seabed mining and by 2030, 100% of our waters will be sustainably managed, with 30% designated as marine protected areas.
He told leaders that these protections and investments can’t wait.
Fiji will also launch the first tranche of a blue bond by this August to blue our economy and take on external threats like overfishing and acidification.
According to Bainimarama, that’s the world’s burden that Fiji will be borrowing to bear.
But he added that no matter how ambitious or how big and blue Fiji’s commitment may be, our single effort isn’t enough and this is why he is here to call on partners for their support and on the world to follow our lead.