Pacific Islands

The Cartagena Protocol and the Pacific islands

Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Palau, PNG, Samoa, Solomon Islands, and Tonga are party to the Protocol which is linked to the Convention on Biodiversity, which, helps to protect Pacific communities and biodiversity from the consequences of living modified organisms.

The Cartagena Protocol was adopted on 29 January 2000 as a supplementary agreement to the Convention on Biological Diversity and entered into force on 11 September 2003.

This protocol helps to ensure the safe transport, handling and use of these LMO's from biotechnology.

Protecting our biodiversity, the Pacific islands share their stories on global stage

All delegates and countries come together united in their commitment to halt the loss of biodiversity.

Fourteen Pacific island countries are Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity for which the 13th Conference of the Parties started last week in Cancun, Mexico (CBD COP13).

All have committed to achieving the 20 Aichi Biodiversity Targets with the ultimate goal of reducing biodiversity loss.

Agreement boosts disease response in Pacific Islands

The Pacific Community (SPC) and the Fiji National University (FNU) have signed an agreement for the further development, implementation and accreditation of the region’s Postgraduate Certificate in Field Epidemiology, also known as the Pacific Data for Decision Making Training course.

 “We’re very pleased with this new agreement with FNU that will help in building sustainable human resources for public health data analysis, surveillance and epidemiology in the Pacific,” said SPC Director of Public Health, Dr Paula Vivili.

NZ furthers climate support commitment to Tokelau, Pacific

RNZ reports Paula Bennett was speaking in Marrakech where countries which signed up to the Paris Agreement are holding the first meeting of the Parties to the Agreement.

The minister said New Zealand's latest step was significant for Tokelau and the Pacific.

She said New Zealand and Pacific countries were serious about addressing climate change at home and in the world.

According to Mrs Bennett, New Zealand is providing up to $US142 million dollars for climate-related aid over the next four years, with most of it going to the Pacific.

Economies in the Pacific Islands ease rules for entrepreneurs

Doing Business 2017: Equal Opportunity for All, released, finds that four of the ten Pacific Island economies measured by the report have implemented reforms making it easier to do business - for a total of 9 reforms.

  This is an increase from only three reforms in the previous year.  Fiji, the Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu implemented reforms to improve the business environment.

Disney film Moana appropriating Samoan culture: Arieta Rika

But some people have said the film and its merchandise are appropriating Samoan culture.

Arieta Rika, who founded a website called Talanoa as a home for Pacific stories, told the BBC how she wants her culture to be celebrated.

As a Pacific person, I can't tell you how excited I am to see this movie. Seeing faces that look like mine, telling a story that relates to me. I just don't have the words.

I haven't felt this excited about a Disney film in decades.

Research shows some Pacific islands in water stress

RNZ reports most of these islands are dependent on ground water that is replenished by rainfall.

Researchers from Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, as part of a UNESCO study, looked at the state of ground water in 43 small island states in the Pacific and the Indian Oceans.

Their study has now been published in Nature Climate Change and author, Diana Allen, said when they looked at the ability of aquifers to recharge they found many small islands in a state of water stress.

She put this down to warmer temperatures causing higher evaporation.

Money lost to illegal fishing tops $600 million US

RNZ reports under an international agreement via the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission, also known as the Tuna Commission, 34 countries including the United States have signed an agreement to stomp out IUU fishing.

American Samoa is now part of the international enforcement of an anti IUU regulation which would identify violators, seize their catches and stop them from continuing to trade illegally.
Murray Bauer, from American Samoa's Office of law Enforcement, said they are mainly targeting foreign vessels by closing off local ports.

New Zealand Scholarship Undergraduate Student Summer Internship for 2016-2017

This is following a successful introductory programme last summer.

A group of 16 talented New Zealand Aid Pacific and Timor Leste Scholars will be using their summer to give them a professional edge before returning home to find employment.

This year the programme will include 16 scholars as drive to build with host agency engagement continues, PCF Programme Development Manager Leaupepe Taala said.

“We are excited about the summer internship as we have another group of high calibre scholars , and increased interest from the private sector,’’ Ralph says.

Tevita’s hopes to reach people with his music

Tevita Halahingano Hafoka an emerging artist from Tonga hopes to spread happiness to people with his group Kava Drive.

Tevita’s passion for singing began when he was 5 years and his family started signing him to sing for occasions like birthdays and singing competitions.

“I started singing in Tonga and it was in those performances I began to enjoy singing and found I had a passion for it as well as listening to music”

“Singing became an escape from any form of disappointment and still is to this day”