The Report Card is a product of a year-long project to analyse and co-ordinate the work of 60 Pacific climate change experts, including our Samoa-based regional scientist Patrick Pringle, with marine scientists from the United Kingdom.
The report card summarises current scientific understanding of climate change impacts on the region’s marine environment. The document is intended to help Pacific islanders and decision-makers to understand and respond to the likely impacts of marine climate change.
The Report Card initiative is a product of a dynamic collaboration that includes the UK’s Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), the Secretariat for the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), UN Environment, The University of the South Pacific, The Secretariat for the Pacific Community (SPC) and Climate Analytics IMPACT project.
We and our partners have launched the first @CME_Prog Pacific Climate Change Report Card on #WorldOceansDay!— Cefas (@CefasGovUK) June 8, 2018
The work summarises current scientific understanding of #climatechange impacts on the region’s marine environment. https://t.co/9g71PkcDo8 pic.twitter.com/5ENanMOB4v
The user-friendly presentation of the most current scientific knowledge on climate change and the Pacific’s marine environment is particularly important for supporting sustainable decision-making in the ocean-dependent Pacific islands. According to the study, projections of rising sea levels, more intense storms, floods, higher temperatures, and ocean acidification place fundamental needs such as living space, housing, food and water security, culture, health and wellbeing at risk.
The report card underscores the urgency of action, and recommends measures for addressing the projected impacts including:
- Emphasising the importance of significantly reducing existing pressures from pollution, marine waste, population growth, overfishing and coastal development, to increase resilience to climate impacts.
- Further incorporation of knowledge and needs of social and cultural groups in adaptation planning.
- Ensuring that coastal planning and management are adaptable, and can be further developed with time, in line with future climate change.
- Developing a better understanding of localised climate impacts, by bringing scientists and local communities together.
13 detailed supporting reviews that accompany the report card provide further information on each of the topics.