Climate change is one of the greatest barriers to sustainable development for small island countries, says Ministry of Foreign Affairs director Political Treaties, Mr Esala Nayasi.

Mr Nayasi said the adverse effects of climate change is a security threat to Pacific Island Countries (PIC’s) as it greatly affects the survival of people through the impact it has on resources.

Speaking at the “First Open Discussion Workshop about Climate Engineering: Perspectives of Pacific Small Island States” at Holiday Inn on 22 August, Mr Nayasi highlighted the need for research, scientific studies, data and even climate engineering in addressing the impact it will have on these nations.

As PICs, it is incumbent on us to endeavour to advance our interest within the international community and we need science, we need research, we need data and we need climate change engineering,” he said.

Mr Nayasi said Fiji had long recognised that individually it cannot hope to achieve change but needed to use collective strength to persuade communities on the absolute imperative for action on climate change.

He noted that there were some countries that were now providing research funding for climate change studies.

The workshop is a joint effort of the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies and the University of the South Pacific’s Pacific Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development, where experts from both these institutions would share their findings with the participants over the three day meet.

The meeting which is being attended by 12 PIC’s is looking at progress, research and data on climate engineering as a mode of addressing climate change.

Climate engineering, a term that has been around since the 1990’s, is the deliberate and large-scale intervention in the Earth’s climatic system with the aim of reducing global warming.

Mr Nayasi said through its annual National Climate Change Summit, which had its second meet in Narewa village, Nadi last week, Fiji was mapping out a comprehensive plan of action to address climate change through clear time bound and detailed implementation strategy.

He encouraged the participants to learn all they can from the experts about climate engineering and to share the information in their respective countries.