Local Group: 350 PNG
“Through 350 PNG, we hope to create a generation of young people willing to stand up not only for PNG and the Pacific Islands, but the world.”
– Arianne Kassman, 350 Papua New Guinea
Who are 350 PNG, and what’s it all about?
350 PNG first formed with the help of the Youth Against Corruption Association (YACA) in September 2013, and today 350 PNG still operates under it.
Despite being young ourselves, we are still the first youth climate change movement in PNG. We’ve found that despite the many climatic challenges which are being made worse by climate change throughout PNG, many of today’s youth didn’t really understand what’s actually happening to our climatic system. We hope that our efforts can help educate and empower the young people within PNG to fight back against climate change. We see a new generation of young people willing to stand up and fight for the safe climate they deserve.
What climate changes are occurring in Papua New Guinea, and what’s next?
- Average temperatures continue to rise: Maximum temperatures have increased on average .11°C every decade since 1950.
- Sea level has risen: At a rate more than double the global average, at 7mm per year. While this may be due to decadal fluctuation, it remains worrying and is expected to continue.
- Oceans continue to grow more acidic: Since the 18th century, acidification of the ocean around PNG has slowly increased, and is expected to continue increasing.
- Less frequent but more intense storms: Wind speeds expected to increase, as well as rainfall intensity.
- More extreme rainfall days: These will occur more often, increasing the likelihood of flooding.
- Climate Refugees: In 2009, some residents of the Cateret Islands 80km off Bougainville became the first climate refugees following years of worsening storm surges and king tides.
More detailed information from the Australian Government’s ‘Pacific Climate Change Science Program’ can be downloaded here –> PNG Climate Change Factsheet PDF.
What is the PNG government’s official stance on climate change?
In 2011, Vice Minister for Forests and Climate Change in Papua New Guinea Mr Ronald Asik made a statement at the UNFCCC 17th Conference of the Parties in Durban South Africa. His statement surrounding climate change (and forestry policy) can be found at this link.
What’s the overriding message of your campaigns?
We aim to show the youth of PNG that it’s possible to change the path. We want the people of the PNG to understand climate change itself, understand the threats that climate change may impose upon PNG, but also understand that a collective voice can make a difference. Through the combined efforts of our elected representatives, businesses, civil society organisations, faith based organisations, individual citizens, and a government committed to the fight against climate change, we can together effectively reduce our carbon footprint and secure a future for generations to come!
What’s next for 350 PNG?
The first thing we’ve planned is the Youth Climate Change Warrior training, which is the first of its kind in PNG! The program will run over the 18th – 20th of January 2014, and our progress will be shared on the 350 Pacific Facebook page. More events planned for 2014 include: an informal, national 350 PNG day, photo campaigns, youth forums and many more!
Contact 350 PNG
For more information on how to get involved, email the 350 PNG coordinator on firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!