(Photo Credit: IISD)
Ben Namakin is from Kiribati. Having grown up on islands in the Pacific, both in Kiribati and Pohnpei in the Federated States of Micronesia, he is a former youth advocate at youth forums on climate change both in the Pacific and at the International fora.
As a member of the international youth delegation to the UN Climate Change Conference in Montreal, he addressed the plenary session and contributed to the youth declaration “Our Climate, Our Challenge, Our Future” in 2005. He set up his climate change campaign for Pacific Islands in 15 States of the United States in 2006 and spoke for the Many Strong Voices (MSV) group at the UN Climate Change Conference in Bali, Indonesia in 2007. Ben was the founding chair of the International Pacific Marine Educators Network (IPMEN) in 2008, head of both Pacific Delegation and World’s Indigenous Youth to the Indigenous People’s Global Summit on Climate Change in Anchorage, Alaska in 2009 and also assisted in coordinating the 350.org campaign in the Pacific region for the Global Day of Action on October 24th, 2009.
Ben has also worked as a program manager for the Environmental Education and Awareness Program for the Conservation Society of Pohnpei. He has also been a member of Kiribati negotiating team at international climate change negotiations, a climate change policy officer for the World Wide Fund for Nature and a consultant to the climate change unit at the Environment and Conservation Division under the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Agriculture Development. Ben has recently been engaged in a shark campaign under PEW’s global shark conservation.