9 Jul 2015

Pacific body wants strong commitment at COP 21

9:07 am on 9 July 2015
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Photo: RNZ

Scientists at the Secretariat of the Pacific Community say there must be an ambitious climate change agreement by world leaders when they meet in Paris in December.

An SPC scientist, Raphaël Billé, says if they do not commit at least to the recommended 2 degree target for temperature increase by the end of the century all ocean protection and management processes in the Pacific would be rendered useless.

Mr Billé, who contributed to a paper published to coincide with a scientific conference on climate change in Paris this week, says it is easy to be sceptical but he is holding out hope world leaders will do what is right.

"I really believe that more and more countries are actually aware now that an ambitious agreement is completely necessary to get from Paris and that the pressure from the society is now too high to fail."

The paper published by the Oceans 2015 Initiative in the journal, Science, warns that an immediate and substantial reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions is needed to prevent massive and irreversible impacts on ocean ecosystems and their ability to capture CO2 and absorb heat.

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