World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Anote Tong Announced as Hillary Laureate 2012

EMBARGOED MIDNIGHT 17 September 2012

GLOBAL MEDIA RELEASE

The Hillary Institute of International Leadership today announced its 2012 global Hillary Laureate; His Excellency, Te Beretitenti, (President) Anote Tong of Kiribati.

The Institute’s international board, the Hillary Summit, has selected President Tong as its 4th annual Hillary Laureate awardee and the first for Leadership in “Climate Equity”, which is the Institute’s Leadership focus until 2015. Former Hillary Laureates are Jeremy Leggett (UK-2009), Peggy Liu (China-2010) and Aimee Christensen (USA-2011). Ms. Liu also won the Hillary Step prize earlier this year.

Says Institute Chairman David Caygill: “No nation symbolises more dramatically than Kiribati both the impact of climate change and the inequity of that impact on different nations. President Tong has been tireless in his efforts to draw these concerns to the attention of the world. We hope this award assists his endeavours."

Hillary Summit Governor and IPCC* Chair, Dr Rajendra Pachauri adds; “I am truly delighted at the selection of President Anote Tong. I cannot think of a more deserving person for this recognition and honour."

The Hillary Summit selected President Tong from a global watch-list the Institute has built on Leaders in mid-career whose leadership on Climate Equity issues is exceptional and inspirational.

Says a spokesperson for President Tong , “His Excellency Te Beretitenti is most delighted and honoured to have been considered as the recipient of this award and would be extremely pleased to accept such honour on behalf of his people and his nation and others similarly affected by climate change”.

President Tong is the recipient of many awards and recognition for his leadership, the most recent being the Peter Benchley Ocean Award for Excellence in National Stewardship of the Ocean (Huffington Post, 12/8 2012).

Given the stark sea-rise realities confronting his nation however, in what could be the world's first climate-induced migration of modern times, the Kiribati President has recently been in talks with relevant authorities in Fiji to buy up to 6,000 acres of freehold land initially as an investment option and a food security safety net in response to increasing challenges posed by climate change. Some of Kiribati's 32 pancake-flat coral atolls, which straddle the equator over 1,350,000 square miles of ocean are already being seriously affected requiring the relocation of some village communities.

The Hillary Institute will work with President Tong, to enhance his work, both within his home community and internationally. He will also lead the Institute’s 5th Annual Symposium on Climate Equity in Christchurch, in November.

PRESIDENT ANOTE TONG;

Is in his third term as President of Kiribati. In 2008, under his leadership Kiribati made a grand gift to the world: it declared 150,000 square miles of its Phoenix Islands marine area a fully protected marine park, making it off limits to fishing and other extractive uses.

This ocean wilderness (the size of California), has been designated a UN World Heritage Site. It has been described as one of the most pristine parts of our blue planet, with rich biodiversity including an abundance of healthy corals, sharks, grouper, tuna, giant clams and other species that have been depleted in much of the rest of the world.

FORCED MIGRATION

Most of Kiribati’s 113,000 people are crammed on to Tarawa, the administrative centre, a chain of islets which curve in a horseshoe shape around a lagoon. "Our people will have to move as the tides have reached our homes and villages."

President Tong says that “part of the worst case scenario adaptation strategy to the challenge of climate change would be to upskill our people in order to better equip them for relocation and integration. This would not only enable them to migrate with dignity but also to make a positive contribution to their destination country's economy”.

HILLARY INSTITUTE:

www.hillaryinstitute.com

Five years old, the New Zealand-based Hillary Institute was launched with Sir Edmund Hillary and its patron, former NZ Prime Minister Helen Clark in 2007.

In honouring Sir Edmund’s legacy (who passed in 2008), its mission is to recognize exceptional international leadership in mid-career through selecting one global Hillary Laureate annually, and awarding the four yearly, NZD100K, Hillary Step prize.

(*Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change)

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Release Of 200 Nigerian Girls Held Captive By Boko Haram

UN envoy Gordon Brown welcomes release of 200 Nigerian girls held captive by Boko Haram More>>

Ban Calls For Immediate End To Hostilities In Northern Mali

Chadian UN peacekeepers heading to their base in Tessalit, northern Mali. Photo MINUSMA/Marco Dormino More>>

New UN Special Envoy On Ebola Response Visit To Sierra Leone

29 April 2015 – The United Nations World Health Organization ( WHO ) today said that surveillance and community engagement still require improvement in some areas of Guinea and Sierra Leone where new cases continued to surface, a day after the ... More>>

Somalia Registers Record Export Of Livestock In 2014

Somalia registers record export of livestock in 2014 due to trade boost with Gulf States More>>


United States: Riots In Baltimore – National Guard Sent In [graphic Images]

Riots have broken out in Baltimore following the funeral of Freddie Gray, a 25 year old black man who died from injuries sustained while in police custody. More>>

West Papua: “Lest We Forget”

AS Anzac approaches and Australians and New Zealanders remember those who fought and lost their lives on Anzac Day, it is hoped we will also remember the unfree people of the Pacific region and in particular those who are still suffering from human ... More>>

Iran: 81 Executions In One Week

Coincident with mass executions in the prisons of Ghezel-Hessar, Karaj and other cities, the anti-human regime of mullahs sent 16 other prisoners to the gallows in Mashhad and Birjand (northeastern Iran). Twelve of them were hanged collectively ... More>>

Al-Shabaab: Four Unicef Staff Killed In Somalia

Four UNICEF staff members have been killed in an attack on their vehicle in Garowe, Somalia. Four other UNICEF colleagues are in a serious condition. The IED (improvised explosive device) attack occurred when the staff were travelling from their guest ... More>>

UN: Suicide Attack In Jalalabad Condemned

NEW YORK/KABUL/GENEVA (18April 2015) – “I strongly condemn the brutal suicide attack that coincided with my visit to Jalalabad today,” said United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Šimonović during his visit to Afghanistan. ... More>>

Save The Children: STC Urges EU Leaders To Act To Prevent More Mass Drownings

Save the Children Urges EU Leaders to Act to Prevent More Mass Drownings at Sea. More>>

ALSO:

Japan: Independent Experts Slam Japan’s New Whaling Plan

Independent experts slam Japan’s new whaling plan and declare no more whales need to be killed for Antarctic research More>>

Gaza Strip: Attacks In The Border Areas

Following disengagement from the Gaza Strip in September 2005, Israel unilaterally and illegally established a so-called “buffer zone”, an area prohibited to Palestinians along the land and sea borders of the Gaza Strip. The precise area designated by ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news