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INTER-REGIONAL

International Meeting
for the 10-year Review of the Barbados Programme of Action,
Port Louis, Mauritius, 10-14th January 2005

With the heading 'Small islands, big stakes' this conference opened under the shadow of the 26th December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.

The Mauritius Declaration and the Mauritius Strategy, the main outcomes from the meeting, reaffirm that the Barbados Programme of Action, adopted a decade ago, remains the "blueprint" for the sustainable development of small island developing States. It elaborates on a wide variety of actions under 20 broad headings, including climate change and sea-level rise; natural and environmental disasters; management of wastes; coastal and marine resources; freshwater resources; land resources; energy resources; and globalization and trade liberalization. The newly-agreed text indicates that small island developing States, "believe that they are already experiencing major adverse effects of climate change" and that adaptation to adverse impacts of climate change and sea-level rise remains a major priority for them. It also promotes increased energy efficiency and development and use of renewable energy as a matter of priority, as well as advanced and cleaner fossil fuel technologies.

A parallel civil society forum was convened by Centre for Documentation, Research and Training on the South West Indian Ocean (CEDREFI), with support from Small Islands Voice and other organizations, from 6-9th January 2005. Two hundred persons met to discuss their priority issues and called on civil society and SIDS governments to work side by side to further action in a number of areas. The main outcome was the Declaration of the Mauritius Civil Society Forum.

Ninety-four youth from SIDS met for Youth Visioning for Island Living from 7-12th January 2005 at Pointe aux Sables. They focused on three main themes: Life and love in islands, My island home, and Money in my pocket. Their declaration, which was presented to the main governmental meeting, included a list of specific actions that they committed themselves to implement on return to their island homes.

_wendybarnet
Ms. Wendy Barnet Rivas from Cuba, presenting the Youth Declaration
to the Main International Meeting, 12th January 2005

A series of Small Islands Voice side events featuring the different activities on the ground in the individual islands and the internet forums was also held between 9-13th January 2005.

Among the many documents distributed at the meetings, UNESCO's Island Agenda 2004+ Coping with change and sustaining diversities in small islands provides a series of 'snapshots' of the issues islands face and the solutions being implemented.

 

To get involved, contact :

 

Coastal Regions and Small Islands Platform
UNESCO, Paris, France
csi1@unesco.org
fax: +33 1 45 68 58 08
 

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