Climate change sceptics 'utterly stupid', Samoa's Prime Minister says

Published On: August 31, 2018 01:30 PM NPT By: Agencies

SAMOA, Aug 31: Samoa's Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi has hit out at climate change skeptics and says developed countries need to reduce pollution to save Pacific island countries from disaster.

He told the Lowy Institute in Sydney greater ambition is necessary to limit global warming to 1.5°C.

He said everyone knows the problem and solutions and all that's needed are the political guts to warn of the certainty of disaster.

"And any leader of any country who believes that there is no climate change, I think he ought to be taken to mental confinement. He is utterly stupid," Tuilaepa said.

Tuilaepa said Pacific island countries face the challenge of maintaining solidarity amid the intense engagement of an ever growing number of partners in the region.

"Under the flagship of our Blue Pacific identity, we are building a collective voice amidst the geopolitical din on the existential threat of climate change that looms for all of our Pacific family," he said.

The Pacific was increasingly empowered but beset with dilemmas, Tuilaepa said.

"As we seek to develop: do we give up our sovereignty, our uniqueness? An upgraded port, for example, may bring greater connectivity and opportunities for growth in some ways, but could it represent a ceding of sovereignty in other ways?"

In an increasingly contested space, the Samoan prime minister said regional and national stability had never been more critical.

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