The Catholic Agency for Justice, Peace and Development

State of the Environment

The Caritas State of the Environment for Oceania Report:  Waters of Life, Oceans of Mercy was launched on St Francis Day, 4 October 2018, during the week-long Caritas Oceania Forum held at the Home of Compassion, Island Bay.

In its fifth environment report for Oceania, Caritas has called for an integrated approach to tackling climate change that prioritises the needs of the poor. The call comes ahead of the release of a Special Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)  on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.

The state of the environment report, published by Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand on behalf of the region, tracks five key environmental issues affecting the lives of Oceania’s peoples. These issues are coastal erosion/sea level rise; food and water; extreme weather; offshore mining and drilling; and climate finance. The report puts a human face on how climate change and other environmental issues are affecting people dependent on the oceans, freshwater and healthy sustainable land use for their survival, livelihoods and identity.

State of the Environment for Oceania 2017 report

Caritas’ fourth State of the Environment for Oceania report, Turning the Tide, was released on St Francis Day, at Te Ngākau Tapu Parish in Porirua, Aotearoa New Zealand.

State of the Environment for Oceania 2016 report

“People have died and have been sick because they have no food to eat and no safe, clean water to drink.”

Tony Inikre (Caritas Coordinator for Vanimo Diocese in northwest Papua New Guinea), in February, during the peak of the El Niño drought in Papua New Guinea.

State of the Environment for Oceania 2015 report

“For us Oceania peoples, ... climate change is a daily struggle. For many of our Oceania countries it is a question of whether we remain on or leave our sinking homes. Our livelihoods are linked to the Pacific Ocean. Sea level rise and ocean acidification and other effects of global warming threaten our way of life – and even our national identities. For us it is a matter of life and death.”

- Caritas Oceania leaders

Foundational State of the Environment for Oceania 2014 report

In 2014 we produced our foundational report on the environment in Oceania based on interviews with our partners in the region. We took the title, Small yet strong: Voices from Oceania on the environment, from the Pope Francis quote below.

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Tutu ana te puehu - Stirring up the dust