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Aust reassures Pacific over climate change

AAP logoAAP 9/11/2016 Lisa Martin

Australia has moved to reassure Pacific island nations on the frontline of global warming they won't be abandoned despite the election of climate change denier Donald Trump as US president.

The world is waiting to see if Mr Trump delivers a promise to pull the US from the Paris Climate Agreement and stop billions of dollars in global warming payments to the United Nations.

There is speculation Mr Trump will choose well-known climate change sceptic Myron Ebell to spearhead the transition plans for the US Environmental Protection Agency

Minister for the Pacific Concetta Fierravanti-Wells said Australia was focused on helping its island neighbours build resilience to natural disasters.

"It's really important we address climate smart projects, whether they be in water management, sanitation or building back better (post storms)," Senator Fierravanti-Wells told reporters in Canberra on Thursday.

Australia is a board member on the global green climate fund and has vowed to go into bat for Pacific island nations so they can access funding for mitigation and disaster response.

Marshall Islands President Hilda Heine said president-elect Trump had been the source of lots of bluster on climate change.

"Now that the election campaign has passed and the realities of leadership settle in, I expect he will realise that climate change is a threat to his people and to whole countries which share seas with the US including my own," she said in a statement to US news site Politico.

The UN climate change conference is under way in Morocco, focusing on how countries will implement last year's Paris agreement, an international treaty designed to curb the rise of carbon pollution emissions and global temperatures.

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