Island Rights Initiative Associate, Angelique Pouponneau, represents the Alliance of Small Island States at international meetings on climate change

Angelique Pouponneau

Angelique Pouponneau

Angelique Pouponneau, associate of the Island Rights Initiative, represented the Alliance of Small Island States at the stakeholder meeting of the Taskforce on Displacement of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage (WIM) from the 14th to the 15th May 2018. In 2015, the WIM under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was mandated by the Conference on the Parties in 2015 to establish a Taskforce to develop recommendations for integrated approaches to avert, minimize and address displacement related to the adverse impacts of climate change. She actively contributed to the work group on international policies advocating for addressing gaps such as the lack of link between the health of the ocean, displacement and human rights and calling for the consideration of legal questions such as the possible ‘stateless’ scenario of islands as well as the shrinking and disappearance of their Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). She also contributed to discussions on slow onset events. These recommendations will be presented to the Executive Committee of the WIM to then be presented to the COP in COP 24.

Prior to this important meeting, Angelique, was participating in the negotiations at the 48th session of the subsidiary bodies of the UNFCCC with only six months left before the deadline for completing the Paris Agreement Work Programme (PAWP). Angelique followed adaptation and loss and damage, two priority areas for small islands. She also, participated in the Suva Expert Dialogue which had been mandated to explore a wide range of information, inputs and views on ways for facilitating the mobilization and securing of expertise and enhancement of support, including finance, technology and capacity building, for averting, minimizing and address loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change, including extreme weather events and slow onset events. There, she expressed the concern of the risk assessment models that are not adequately capturing economic loss caused by changing migratory patterns of fish because of rising sea temperatures around the Seychelles which during one el nino period had cause of a loss of 34% of the GDP to the Seychelles economy over a three months period. Occurrences of el nino are likely to be more frequent with rising sea temperatures. Additionally, she shared the example of the Seychelles Conservation and Climate Change Adaptation Trust which mobilized funds though a debt-swap and philanthropic donations whereby the funds would be used for adaptation projects but also to address disaster risk and management so as to build resilience.

Angelique is an expert on climate change, the environment and human rights as they affect small island states and previously co-authored two pieces on human rights and loss and damage:

Closing the gap between human rights protection and loss and damage – Recommendations for COP 23:

Protecting economic, social and cultural rights in the aftermath of natural disasters: