COOKS SEND BIG DELEGATION TO COPENHAGEN

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Entourage includes 14 public, private officials

RAROTONGA, Cook Islands (The Cook Islands Herald, Dec. 2, 2009) - The Cook Islands is to send a delegation of 14 members to Copenhagen, Denmark for the Climate Change Conference to be held from 7 to 18 December 2009.

The Climate Change Conference consists of several sessions. Some Delegates have already departed to attend sessions being held in the first week while the main group which includes the Prime Minister will attend the high level segment in the second week.

At that session, leaders of each country who are a signatory to the Kyoto Protocol, will speak beginning with Heads of State (Presidents) then Prime Ministers then Ministers deputizing for Prime Ministers. It is not known when our PM will speak but he will be given about five minutes.

Leading the Cook Islands delegation is the Prime Minister Honourable Jim Marurai who will be accompanied by his Executive Advisor Trevor Pitt.

Environment Minister Honourable Ngamau Munokoa is also attending along with her CEO Arthur Taripo and Delegate Ngari Munokoa.

Attending from Environment Service are: Tania Temata, Pasha Carruthers, Miimetua Matamaki, Rikana Taiti Torama Tuhe.

From Foreign Affairs will be: Myra Moeka’a-Patai.

From the Office of the Prime Minister: Liz Wright-Koteka.

From WWF: Diane McFadzien.

From the Foundation for International Environment Law and Development: Linda Siegele.

From Pacific Wave Media: Ulamila Wragg.

Other Cook Islanders who will be in Copenhagen but not as part of the government delegation, are: David Ngatae representing Cook Islands Climate Action Network.

Helen Maunga representing Cook Islands Workers Association, International Trade Unions Asia Pacific Rep.

Luana Bosanquet Heays who is the Pacific Survival Project Youth Rep.

Nanette Woonton who is the SPREP Media Officer.

Lisa Williams who is a journalist and Yvonne Underhill-Sem of Auckland University.

The Cook Islands is expected to adopt the stance taken by the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) as set out in their 2009 declaration on Climate Change announced in New York on 21 September 2009. An extract of point number six is set out below.

"6. We assert thus that the outcome to be concluded at the fifteenth session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Copenhagen in 2009 should inter alia:

(a) Use the avoidance of adverse climate change impacts on SIDS as one of the key benchmarks for assessing its appropriateness, consistent with the precautionary principle and the principle of prevention;

(b) Adopt a package of mitigation activities, now, up to and beyond 2012 that provides for:

(c) Provide SIDS with new, additional, predictable, transparent and adequate sources of grant-based financing to fully meet the adaptation needs of these particularly vulnerable countries, and ensure for SIDS that access is timely, direct, prioritized and simplified.

(d) Call for an urgent and significant scaling up of the provision of financial resources and investment that is adequate, predictable and sustainable to support action on mitigation in developing country Parties for the enhanced implementation of national mitigation strategies; including positive incentives, the mobilization of public- and private-sector funding and investment and facilitation of carbon-friendly investment choices.

(e) Ensure that renewable energy and energy efficiency form essential pillars of future mitigation actions by all countries, taking into account national circumstances.

(f.) Establish a mechanism to address loss and damage from climate change comprised of a disaster risk component, insurance, and compensation funds, to help SIDS manage the financial and economic risks arising from climate impacts; to assist in the rapid recovery and rehabilitation from climate related extreme weather events and to address unavoidable damage and loss associated with the adverse effects of climate change.

(g) Provide support to SIDS to enhance their capacities to respond to the challenges brought on by climate change and to access the technologies that will be required to undertake needed mitigation actions and to adapt to the adverse impacts of climate change, noting the obligations of Annex 1 countries under the UNFCCC in this regard,"

There are seven small island states in the Pacific with more in the Caribbean.

The Cook Islands Herald: http://www.ciherald.co.ck/Times.htm Copyright 2009 © Elijah Communications Ltd. All rights reserved

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