COMMENT: Challenging but exciting

NUKU’ALOFA-September 21: 5.29 (Nuku’alofa Times): What a journey it has been!

This week’s edition of the Nuku’alofa Times becomes our 82nd in a span of just over 15 months.

But this one is different – heralding the new look Nuku’alofa Times Online newspaper and what we will be offering our readers from now.

Your newspaper will now be a 24-pager weekly and there is always the chance that we will be even bigger as the demand continues to grow.

The last 15 months have been challenging – and the next 15 will be even more exciting.

It is our dream that we will make the Nuku’alofa Times THE newspaper that you will all be wanting to read to get your news, facts and information.

The addition of close working friend Tevita Siliva to the team adds to that excitement as we work on improving the newspaper and offering you something that is in line with what the major newspapers around the region and the world offers their readers.

Have a read and let us know what you think

Oh yes – please let us know also if you have news tips, sports events, community projects and news that you would want us to include in our coverage.

Tonga – this is your newspaper – tell us and we will tell everyone else!


Paris agreement

Thirty more countries are expected to formally join the Paris Agreement on climate change this week, greatly improving the pact’s chances of coming into force just a year after it was negotiated in the French capital, the United Nations said on Tuesday.

Tongan Prime Minister Pohiva is among more those who are interested to sing the agreement, joining more than 170 world leaders who have signed the deal.

The deal won’t take effect until 55 countries, accounting for at least 55 percent of global emissions, have ratified or accepted it through their domestic procedures.

That was initially expected to take several years, but 28 countries accounting for 39 percent of emissions including the world’s two biggest emitters, the United States and China, have already ratified the deal.

The 30 ratifications expected to be handed to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at a special event at U.N. headquarters in New York today (on Wednesday) would bring the total to 58 countries — but many are small and their total emissions likely won’t reach the required 55 percent.

Brazil, Mexico and Argentina are the largest emitters on the list announced late Tuesday by the United Nations. But the 30 countries will only bring the emissions total to 47 percent.

At least half a dozen small island nations including Papua New Guinea, Tonga and Kiribati are expected to ratify along with several countries from Central America, Africa, Asia and one from the Mideast — the United Arab Emirates.

The Pacific Region needs the deal signed – now more than ever before.

The continuing rise in sea levels has forced a lot of major changes in the livelihood and living style of Pacific communities across the region.

Some of our smaller islands are sinking and even here in Tonga some of our coastlines are already been washed out.

Let’s hope that common sense will prevail and all the major industrial nations who emit so much bad air into the atmosphere sign up and help reduce the effects on our system.


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