Iokwe and welcome to the Micronesian Center for Sustainable Transport.
This exciting initiative from the Republic of the Marshall Islands and the University of the South Pacific is our vehicle to achieving our transport emissions reduction targets set under the Paris Agreement. In doing so, we want to act as a catalyst for our friends and neighbors in other Pacific island states. The Majuro Declaration on Climate Leadership that the Pacific leaders signed in 2013 calls on all actors, large and small, to be climate change leaders. No matter that the emissions of the Marshall Islands are miniscule on a global scale, we are determined to lead by example.
Shipping and sea transport is the very lifeline of our maritime atoll nation and our ocean region. While addressing the effects of climate change is the great challenge of our generation, in the transport sector it is also the opportunity to move to new, green, more affordable and appropriate solutions. The MCST has been established as a Center of Excellence to oversee and coordinate our national program of action as we transition to a low carbon transport future for the Marshall Islands and the Pacific region.
The MCST is a regional resource. If, with your help, we succeed in achieving a whole of country transition to a low carbon transport future, these lessons can then be cascaded to our neighbors throughout the Pacific. The government of RMI is extremely grateful to the Micronesian Presidents’ Summit, The Coalition of Atoll Nations, the Smaller Island States Leaders forum and the regional Transport Ministers Forum for endorsing this approach. We will use this website to update the region on our progress and to provide an ever-increasing flow of information and knowledge in this fast developing field.
Achieving the targets we have set ourselves is an ambitious undertaking and as the late Tony de Brum was fond of reminding us, 'time is not our friend'. We will need your expertise, your knowledge and your support to make this a reality. Ours is ‘an all willing partners welcome” approach. My heartful thanks to our many collaborators around the world who have already stepped up to help us establish this Center. I call on all with knowledge, ideas, innovation and energy that might assist us to make contact. Remember – its 1.5o to stay alive!
Hon. Wilbur Heine
MCST Board Chair
Minister of Education, Sports and Training