The former president of the Maldives has said that Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate accord is a “death sentence” for his country.
Mohamed Nasheed insisted the man-made changes in climate that the accord is designed to limit have big impacts on island communities like his.
The archipelago is the flattest country on Earth and experts say it is extremely vulnerable to sea level changes.
Mr Nasheed, who appeared on Sky News to appeal to Mr Trump to change his mind, said: “President Trump’s repudiation from the Paris agreement in effect is a death sentence on the Maldives, a number of low-lying islands and coastal areas.
“It is being on death row.
“But the silver lining here is that this has brought the issue more to the front. We want to highlight the issue.
“The Maldives is just 1.5 metres above sea level. It’s a very fragile country and small changes to climate has a big impact on the Maldives.
“Coastal erosion is a big issue, coral bleaching is a big issue, water contamination is a big issue, dwindling fish catch is a big issue. It has a number of impacts on our livelihoods.
“For the Maldives it’s not something in the future. It is already happening.”
He claimed that Mr Trump’s determination to switch back to coal as a power source was out of date.
He cited a recently commissioned renewable energy power plant in India which is able to produce electricity more cheaply that one powered by coal.
Mr Nasheed and his entire cabinet wore scuba gear to have a meeting underwater in 2009 to highlight the risk to his country from global warming.
The latest world leader to comment on the decision by Mr Trump to withdraw from the landmark agreement to cut greenhouse gases was Vladimir Putin.
The Russian President said he did not “judge” his counterpart in Washington and told world leaders “don’t worry, be happy”.
Mr Trump appeared to have performed a u-turn on Saturday when his ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, said he was not a climate change denier.
She told CNN’s State of the Union: “President Trump believes the climate is changing. And he believes pollutants are part of that equation. So that is the fact.”
Previously, the property magnate has spent years publicly bashing the idea of global warming as a “hoax” and “total con job” in books, interviews and tweets.
Full details are available from the link below:
Source URL: Google News