24 Oct 2009

Pacific countries unite in day of climate action

11:42 am on 24 October 2009

The organisers of a global action on climate change on Saturday say every country in the Pacific is taking part.

The group 350 dot org argues that 350 parts per million is the safe upper limit for atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide.

It maintains the current level of between 387 and 389 is causing damage to the world's most vulnerable people and puts Pacific people among the most severely affected.

350's Pacific Regional Co-ordinator, Fiona Hodge, says taking part in a global action day is helping Pacific Islanders overcome the feelings of disempowerment they have around climate change.

"For these people climate change is so very real, you know it's all around them and it's sort of affecting their daily lives and their immediate future so maybe they overestimate how real it is for everyone else. I think maybe a lot of politicians and diplomats and people from the western world like Europe, North American and Australia and New Zealand would do well to think a little bit more about what climate change could mean for these people."

Fiona Hodge says people in the Pacific are optimistic that the global climate change meeting in Copenhagen in December will benefit them.