Island voices

Published: Friday 31 October 2008

On September 23 and 24, people in the Fijian capital, Suva, were treated to a unique film festival. The films on show were about climate change affecting the Pacific Ocean islands. The festival was rganized by the iucn, the Pacific Regional Environment Programme--an intergovernmental agency--and the British High Commission in Suva

"The challenge before the Pacific island countries is not only to encourage a greater understanding of the issue, but also to draw on the strengths of communities to adapt to climate variability, the festival's brochure noted.

The films were true to this call. Take, for instance, Kia Vai Teateamamao (Be Prepared). This documentary produced by the Cooks Islands' National Environment Service examined traditional methods of forecasting extreme weather changes in the islands. Then there was Naamon Marae's The Island of my Ancestors, an intriguing look at the climate-related problems faced by Kiribati.

Comprising entirely low-lying atolls, Kiribati will bear the brunt of sea level rise resulting from climate change.

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