They are young, Pasifika and their message is clear: Ban seabed mining and protect the moana of the Pacific.
The call comes from a group of young socially conscious Pasifika leaders who last night helped Greenpeace Aotearoa launch the social media campaign, Oceanic Voices.
The launch of Oceanic Voices saw several young Pasifika community leaders post key messages about Greenpeace Aotearoa’s seabed mining campaign across their respective social media channels.
The leaders include Isoa Kavakimotu, Brianna Fruean, Pati Apa, Tina Maro, John-Paul Foliaki, Dom Tupou, Aigagalefili Fepulea’i- Tapua’i, Sabrina Manu, and Astley Nathan.
Greenpeace Aotearoa seabed mining campaigner James Hita says Oceanic Voices encourages Māori and Pasifika communities to support a ban on seabed mining in Aotearoa and the Pacific.
"This is about the rights of indigenous peoples across the world, and especially in the Pacific where communities are the first to feel the impacts of climate inaction. Together with indigenous leaders we are taking action, and sharing with our communities what needs to be done to stop deep sea mining. I’m inspired, excited, and extremely grateful to have these amazing young people coming together to tautoko the campaign."
"Their willingness to be part of Oceanic Voices tells me that more people are becoming aware of seabed mining in our waters and the Pacific but are also wanting to stop it through a ban. So my hope is that their followers resonate with the campaign and sign the petition to ban seabed mining."
Pacific Media Network’s Tina Maro, who is one of the social media and community leaders, says Oceanic Voices provides the perfect opportunity for Māori and Pasifika to engage with this issue.
"There isn’t much written about this issue to our people; especially young Māori and Pasifika peoples. So, this social media launch is perfect for that. It will engage the issues with them but the messages are also coming from people who they will know and recognise."
"Seabed mining in our waters and around the Pacific will have devastating impacts for generations to come if it continues to progress. We are tangata moana, we are people from the sea, so we have a responsibility as kaitiaki to ensure its sustainability."
Oceanic Voices launched on the respective social media platforms last night and will be shared on Greenpeace Aotearoa’s social media channels.