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Rev. James Bhagwan: Indigenous Melanesians and Conservation in the South Pacific

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Pacific Greetings,

Indigenous peoples and communities represent just under five percent of the world’s population, yet are stewards of approximately twenty-five percent of the world’s land surface and large ocean areas, which represents about 80% of global biodiversity. 

Considered science in itself, indigenous knowledge systems, ways of knowing and being, and its governance for thousands of years demonstrates how it has co-existed within the natural world. But indigenous sciences were dismissed and are ridiculed by euro-centric worldviews.

But the current climate crisis and the declining state of our planet has recognized the significant guardianship role that indigenous people and communities play. Indigenous knowledge systems are now gaining the acknowledgement deserved by western science, academia and policy makers.

Yet despite this acknowledgement indigenous peoples continue to be forcefully and systematically displaced from their ancestral lands and have their ways of life undermined through ongoing forms of colonization. 

At present, large scale 'development' projects result in land grabbing, natural resource extraction (such as mining), deforestation, and pollution which threatens the existence of indigenous peoples. While the climate crises wreaks havoc on indigenous territories and peoples futures.

As guardians, indigenous peoples continue to resist the threats of social, political, economic, and environmental challenges.

Join Rev. James Bhagwan and our distinguished panel of Kealoha Pisciotta from Protect Mauna Kea Movement, Turama Hawira from the Whanganui River in Aotearoa and Hilda Lini of the Melanesian Institute.

Discussing Pacific Guardianship – The role of indigenous Systems and Governances, this webinar draws on a millennia of knowledge systems, kastom practices, experiences and beliefs as Pacific people in response to global issues in offering world views and solutions to current day existential crises. 

Date: Friday 20th August, 2021.

Time Zones: 12pm – PNG/Australia/Palau 1pm – Vanuatu/Solomon Islands
2pm – Fiji/Marshall Islands/New Zealand
3pm – Tonga/Samoa
4pm – (Thursday 19th August) Hawaii/Tahiti

Interested participants can register via zoom:


Thank you

Pacific Blue Line Campaign
P.O. Box 17105 Suva, Fiji | 9 Marion Street, Suva

Tel: (+679) 3316 722 | Web:

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Melanesian Way Conservation

Rev. James Bhagwan

Spirit-led conservation

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