Keisha Castle-Hughes returns from Pacific with message for John Key
Auckland Tuesday June 30 – Kiwi actress Keisha Castle-Hughes has returned from a trip documenting climate change impacts in the Pacific, with a clear message for John Key: act now.
“Our Pacific Island neighbours are suffering. I saw the real and devastating impacts of a changing climate – coral bleaching, homes battered by cyclones, erosion and food crops affected by rising sea levels. The Prime Minister may see some of this for himself next week when he goes to the Pacific.
“I haven’t come out of the trip with the knowledge of a scientist, nor have I come out with all the answers on how to solve climate change but I do have a stronger passion than very before to see New Zealand do its fair share in this global crisis.”
Castle-Hughes spent two days in port on the Greenpeace ship the Esperanza in Rarotonga, before transiting 18 hours on the ship to Aitutaki, a tourist haven that’s bearing the brunt of climate change.
“The locals were all extremely welcoming and happy to share their stories of how their daily lives have been impacted. It was a real eye-opener.”
She also met with the Cook Islands Prime Minister, Minister of Tourism and Queen’s Representative to discuss the issue. Her experiences travels (including video diaries) can be read and viewed at: www.signon.org.nz.
Castle-Hughes is one of a range of high profile climate ambassadors working with Greenpeace New Zealand on the Sign On campaign. The campaign calls for the New Zealand government to adopt a 40 per cent by 2020 emissions reduction target. This is the same target that the Alliance of Small Island States is asking all developed countries to commit to.
“When John Key attends the meeting of Pacific heads of State in August, and the UN climate summit in Copenhagen in December, he needs to remember that our Pacific neighbours need us. The most important thing we can do for them is commit to that emission reduction target.”
See www.signon.org.nz for more info