Moon reef spinners.
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A monthly update of IUCN news in the Oceania Region: March 2012


Melanesian leaders make serious commitment for nature and climate change

IUCN applauds the recent Declaration by Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) leaders to move forward with more serious steps on environment and climate change issues. The Declaration on Environment and Climate Change, signed by the Prime Ministers of Fiji, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea and the Front de Liberation Nationale Kanak Socialiste (FLNKS), is a result of discussions at the first Climate Change and Environment MSG meeting held in January in Nadi, Fiji.

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protected area, papua new guinea

More solar systems for Tonga

43 new solar home systems have been installed and are now in full operation on the island of Lofanga in the Kingdom of Tonga. This is the third solar project completed by IUCN Oceania and the Government of Tonga, with support from the Governments of Italy and Austria, in the remote islands of Ha'apai.

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People fishing Pacific islands

Melanesian countries can lead processes for sustainable fisheries, says Nature Roundtable

Melanesia is in a good position to influence national and regional processes for sustainable fisheries and responsible oceans governance says the Offshore Fisheries Working Group of the Pacific Islands Roundtable for Nature Conservation, in a presentation last week to Prime Ministers, Ministers and senior government officials attending the weeklong Melanesian Spearhead Group Summit in Suva, Fiji.

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Participants at the workshop.

Access and Benefit Sharing: South Pacific Countries gear up to implement the Nagoya Protocol

IUCN Oceania is part of regional discussions to assist South Pacific Island Countries meet their obligations to the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing Arising from their Utilization. The first of a series of workshops was held in Nadi, Fiji on March 19-22 and brought together representatives from ten South Pacific Island Countries and donors and experts from regional organizations and academia.

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Tuna longliners at Rarontonga, Cook Islands

Green growth opportunities can help rebuild Tonga's economy

Latest statistics show alarming declines in Tonga’s economy. In light of this, the National Reserve Bank of Tonga organized the First Economic Dialogue on March 6-8 to highlight the status of Tonga's economy and the challenges at hand and to generate discussions on possible solutions for economic growth and improved livelihoods.

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Shown here - 3 energy efficiency measures in a newly built home: ceiling fans, tinted casement and awning windows.

Energy audit training in Palau

Staff from the National Development Bank of Palau, the implementing partner of IUCN's energy efficiency home loan project, were recently trained on energy auditing in a workshop conducted by The Secretariat of the Pacific Community.

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World Water Day in Fiji

Fiji, an IUCN State Member, and several other partners including IUCN Oceania, celebrated World Water Day by conducting a week-long awareness drive in schools in the Western Division of Viti Levu, Fiji's main island. Beginning from the town of Rakiraki and ending in Sigatoka, students were informed on the critical role of water in society and the importance of healthy ecosystems for safe and clean water sources. On Thursday, March 22, World Water Day was officially celebrated in the town of Nadi in a gathering of 500 students with opening remarks by Fiji's Minister of Primary Industries, Honorable Joketani Cokanasiga.


New reviews show worrying decline in world's seabirds

The status of the world’s seabirds has deteriorated rapidly over recent decades and several species and many populations are now perilously close to extinction. These are the findings of a major new review published this week in the scientific journal Bird Conservation International.

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The SULi Specialist Group is a joint initiative of CEESP and SSC: at the recent SSC Chairs’ meeting in Abu Dhabi, CEESP Chair Aroha Mead, SULi Chair Rosie Cooney, and SSC Chair Simon Stuart embrace the new collaboration. Photo: Monika Bohm.

Introducing SULi: the new CEESP-SSC Specialist Group on Sustainable Use and Livelihoods

The Sustainable Use and Livelihoods Specialist Group, or SULi, is a cross-Commissional Specialist Group focused on the sustainable use of wild living resources. This new group builds on the extensive previous work of the SSC’s Sustainable Use Specialist Group, and stems from a Resolution from the Barcelona World Conservation Congress calling for cross-Commission collaboration on sustainable use. Ms Rosie Cooney is the newly appointed Chair of SULi.

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Welcome Patricia Parkinson

Patricia Parkinson

This month we welcome our new Senior Environmental Law Officer, Ms Patricia Parkinson. Patricia, who is a French-Australian environmental law specialist with a wealth of experience, is a valuable addition to our Environmental Law Programme. Contact Patricia at


Pacific Islands Roundtable for Nature Conservation: 9th Conference on Nature Conservation and Protected Areas- 2013 Preparatory Meeting - 23-24 April. Honiara, Solomon Islands.

Pacific Islands Species Forum - 25-25 April. Honiara, Solomon Islands.  More

Pacific Launch of the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All - mid-May. Suva, Fiji.

World Environment Day - 5 June

12th International Coral Reef Symposium - 9-13 July. Queensland,  Australia.

World Conservation Congress - 6-15 September. Jeju, Korea. More

International River Symposium - 8-11 October. Melbourne, Australia.



World Conservation Congress

2012 Congress logo Registration is now OPEN! for the 2012 IUCN World Conservation Congress in Jeju Island, Republic of Korea. 

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IUCN helps the world find pragmatic solutions to our most pressing environment and development challenges. It supports scientific research, manages field projects all over the world and brings governments, non-government organizations, United Nations agencies, companies and local communities together to develop and implement policy, laws and best practice.