Pacific Church Leaders Speak out on Climate Change as their Homes Flood

10th September 2015

Pacific Leaders TourAs part of an exciting new partnership with Tearfund NZ, A Rocha joined with Tearfund, Oxfam, 350 Aotearoa and the Auckland Diocesan Climate Change Action Group to bring two Pacific Island church leaders to speak directly to New Zealand church leaders.

Hundreds of people listened as Rev. Tafue Lusama told harrowing stories of how cyclones, sea levels, and changes to crops and fisheries are already impacting his nation of Tuvalu and other low-lying nations across the Pacific.  “Our elders can no longer predict weather patterns and salt water not only encroaches on land but rises directly out of it, destroying our crop lands. Cyclone Pam in March was also unprecedented.”  Dr Murray Sheard, Chair of A Rocha and Tearfund Education and Advocacy Manager, says climate change is now undermining development gains.  “Since 1990, people have lifted themselves out of poverty faster than ever before.  But the more we succeed on development, the more we fail on sustainability. That’s a recipe for disaster, and Pacific peoples are the canary in the coal mine.

Three main follow-up actions have sprung from the tour.

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