Vulnerable nations seek common climate stand

08:20, November 10, 2009      

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Ten of the world's most climate vulnerable nations met in the Maldives on Monday to adopt a common stand in international negotiations on climate change.

The meeting, held in Bandos Island about 7 km northwest of the capital Male, comes weeks before the UN Climate Conference in Copenhagen next month to negotiate a successor to the Kyoto Protocol.

During the two-day meeting, delegates will discuss challenges, opportunities and circumstances of the most vulnerable countries for climate adaptation and sustainable development.

Mohamed Nasheed, president of the Maldives, opened the meeting expressing concern over the lack of progress in international climate change negotiations.

Nasheed called on poor, vulnerable countries to show "moral leadership" by shifting from fossil fuel to renewable energy.

"At the moment every country arrives at (international climate) negotiations seeking to keep their own emissions as high as possible. This is the logic of the madhouse, a recipe for collective suicide," said Nasheed.

"We don't want a global suicide pact ... We want a global survival pact," Nasheed stated.

"Some might prefer us to suffer in silence but today we have decided to speak .. We will not die quietly," said the president of the tiny Indian Ocean archipelago.

President Anote Tong of Kiribati, foreign and environment ministers from Bangladesh, Nepal, Vietnam, Ghana, Kenya and Tanzania, as well as representatives from Barbados and Bhutan are taking part in the Climate Vulnerable Forum.

China, Denmark, France, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Britain and the United States are attending the forum as observers.

Organizers of the forum say the aim of the meeting is to amplify the voices of vulnerable, poor nations, who often go unheard in international negotiations.

They hope the forum, which is the first of its kind, will mean a better outcome at Copenhagen for vulnerable, developing nations.

In March this year, the Maldives announced plans to become the world's first carbon neutral nation.

The carbon neutral plan includes proposals to switch from oil to 100 percent renewable energy production.

Source: Xinhua
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