Iconic Greenpeace vessel the Rainbow Warrior today arrived in Port Vila, Vanuatu after a nine day voyage from Cairns, Australia with climate activists, Pacific campaigners and First Nations leaders.

Traditional dancers welcome Rainbow Warrior to Port Vila, Vanuatu (credit_ Island Roots _ Greenpeace)
Traditional dancers welcome Rainbow Warrior to Port Vila, Vanuatu (Credit: Island Roots / Greenpeace)

As part of Greenpeace’s Pacific Ship Tour, the Rainbow Warrior will spend six weeks sailing around Vanuatu, Tuvalu and Fiji, bearing witness with communities on the frontlines of the climate crisis, and gathering evidence of climate harm to present to the world’s highest court.

The ship was welcomed into port with a traditional ceremony and dancing, and those aboard were greeted by members of civil society groups, local communities and Representatives from the government of Vanuatu. Greenpeace Senior Campaigner Sepesa Rasili said:

“We’re excited to be welcomed so warmly back to Vanuatu, this time in support of a groundbreaking Pasifika-led campaign to take climate harm to the International Court of Justice.

“Greenpeace has a long and proud history of working alongside local communities to protect the oceans, lands, and people of the Pacific. We will use the Rainbow Warrior as a platform for discussion, talanoa and friendship, and to amplify the vision of Pasifika activists demanding greater action to protect the human rights of impacted communities across our region.”

Strengthening Australia’s relationship with the Pacific is contingent on real climate action, and Pacific nation leaders have repeatedly affirmed climate change as the single greatest threat to the region. Greenpeace Senior Campaigner Steph Hodgins-May said:

“Pasifika activists are making history through their campaign to take climate change to the world’s highest court. Communities around the world are uniting and using the law to hold governments to account after decades of failure to protect them from climate harm.

“Pacific nations are amongst the most climate-vulnerable, bearing the brunt of rising seas and extreme weather events. But Pacific Island people are some of the strongest voices holding world leaders to account, driving progressive global solutions and demanding urgent action to mitigate climate change.

“Australia can not reset its relationship with the Pacific while pouring billions of taxpayer dollars into fossil fuel subsidies, and greenlighting new coal, oil and gas developments that will directly harm Pacific nations.

“We can change the world if we change the law. We ask the Australian Government to make the strongest possible submission to the International Court of Justice as a statement of support for Pacific survival.”


Media assets

Images: Rainbow Warrior arriving, traditional welcome can be found here and generic photos of the Rainbow Warrior can be found here

Vision: Ship arriving, welcome ceremony, speeches can be found here from 4pm AEST

For more information and a map of Greenpeace Australia Pacific’s Ship Tour: greenpeace.org.au/act/pacific-campaign