The National – Wednesday, December 22, 2010
By EVAH KUAMIN
ALL provinces throughout the country have done very little in combating the effects of climate change in the country, a young environmental science student from the University of Papua New Guinea said.
David Amos, a fourth year environmental science student argued that unless action was first taken locally to address the problem, people would continue to suffer.
Amos in his presentation on the effects of climate change and global warming at the Kokopo Secondary School a week ago, warned that the situation would continue to get worse unless authorities take the matter seriously.
He said that the world meteorological organisation (WHO) reported that 2000-09 had been the hottest decade on record, with eight of the hottest 10 years having occurred since 2000.
He said it was not just the heat that had been posing threats.
Scientists, he added said that global warming had been speeding up the cycling of water between the ocean, atmosphere and land, resulting in more intense rainfall and droughts at the same time across the globe.
“Because of this, there have been many conventions held across the globe to address the greatest threat to humanity and its inhabitants.”
Amos said climate change had been a direct result of global warming with increases in the average temperature of the earth’s surface, air and oceans which had the potential to greatly affect humanity and other living organisms if corrective measures were not taken.
According to Amos, the impact of climate change on PNG communities had been immense affecting cash crop production with increase in diseases, potato blight, cocoa pod borer, coffee berry borer, fruit flies and low crop production resulting in food shortage and malnutrition.
In health, he said malaria was now found in the Highlands region as cooler regions were becoming warmer with disease vectors such as mosquitoes migrating.
Amos said signs of climate change in East New Britain had been seen in the Duke of York Islands sinking, rise in sea level, coastal erosion, and salt water intrusion and longer dry spells.