National | Climate Change

Moana Rising film brings Indigenous-led climate change initiatives to the surface

Moana Rising film shows indigenous solutions to the world's climate change problem.

Sharm El-Sheik, Egypt: Iwi leaders are in Egypt as part of a delegation to show conference attendees at the 27th United Nations Climate Change Conference the effects of climate change through a film.

They hope the film spurs decision-makers to consider indigenous options for restoring the Earth's well-being.

More than one hundred officials, partners, and iwi members attended the premiere of the documentary, Moana Rising.

The film brings pertinent issues related to the moana to the surface and highlights their drive to protect the well-being and prosperity of their waterways and marine ecosystems.

From left: Aperahama Edwards (Ngati Wai Trust Board chairman), Mike Neho (Te Kāhui o Ngā Rauru chairman), Haami Piripi (Te Rūnanga o Te Rarawa chairman), Mere Takoko (Moana Rising film director/ Conservation International vice-president), Wayne Mulligan (NZ Bio Forestry chief executive), Rikirangi Gage (Te Rūnanga o Te Whānau ā Apanui chief executive), Rahui Papa (Moana Rising MC)

"Ki atu ano ki tēnā iwi ki tēnā iwi, ma rātou tonu, mā o rātou reo tonu  e whakapuāki ngā whakaaro o ngā wawata, o ngā manukanuka mw ngā tumanakotanga, koira te mea nui," Te Rūnanga o Te Whānaui ā Apanui chairman Rikirangi Gage says.
Each respective iwi has had the opportunity to share their own stories, dreams, concerns and expectations. That's the most important thing.

"Ko tētahi mea nui kua rongo ahau, ki roto tēnā whakaminenga o tatou ko te hiahia o te ao Māori ki te mahi tahi ki ngā iwi taketake, ano hoki ngā pakihi, ano hoki ngā kawanatanga, puta noa i te ao. Ēnei take a rua ē pā ana ki te matauranga Māori, me kī te pūtaiao pākehā nei, me pēhea te hono tahi te mahi tahi, hei tutuia hei painga mo te taiao, hei painga mo te iwi, ano hei painga mo te moana mo te moana me te whenua ano hoki," says Ceo o Ngāti Wai Trust Board, Huhana Lyndon.
One of the significant benefits of having us here is the chance we have to collaborate with indigenous people, businesses, and governments all over the world. It aims to highlight how mātauranga Māori and western science can collaborate for the benefit of the environment, the people, and especially our sea and land.

From left: Aperahama Edwards (Hinemoana Halo ambassador), Mere Takoko (Vice-President Conservation International), Huhana Lyndon (Ngāti Wai Trust Board chief executive)

"Ko te mea tuatahi, ko te whakamōhio mai he aha ano ngā tini ahuatanga o climate change, Tuarua ki te whakaako i te iwi, kua tino huri noa i te motu i te ao nei," Ngā Rauru representative Mike Neho says.
The first step is to educate people on the various aspects of climate change, and the second is to inform them of how it has affected their country and the rest of the world.

From left: Rob Akuhata, Hilton Collier (Taiao connect), Wayne Mulligan (NZ Bio Forestry), Paul Morgan (Wakatū Incorporated chairman)

“So what I’ve heard tonight is a lot of descriptions of climate change and when I think about what we experience in Te Tairāwhiti, and I’m sure across our country altogether, we tend to talk about the severity of droughts, the severity of floods, the frequency of those events, the changes that we see going on in the taiao (environment) or around us,” Pakihiroa Farms general manager Hilton Colier says.

“I think we have a much closer deeper connection with the taiao so that we notice these changes going on as they happen. Whereas what we are hearing here (COP27) is a description that seems to have suddenly appeared in the past 50 or 60 years, which suddenly requires a response called conservation. For Māori, that’s not the way we see the world. I think it is about the design of the way we use the land to provide for us and, intuitively, an understanding of the need to therefore take care of the land."

The film has motivated an action plan called Hinemoana Halo, the first indigenous-led blue carbon regime in collaboration with Conservation International.

“It’s about seeking investment into a full programme of work within Aotearoa that is led by indigenous and privileged mātauranga Māori and includes western science," Ngāti Kuri Trust Board strategic lead Sheridan Waitai says.

"All the iwi have come as a collective, we all have some similarities, we all have the ability to scale together and we have the connection across the Pacific. It’s about drawing direct investment to amplify our indigenous voices, to transform and counteract climate change."

From left: Sheridan Waitai (Ngāti Kuri Trust Board strategic lead), Haami Piripi (Te Rūnanga o Te Rarawa chairman)

"Ko te waihanga i tetahi pūtea awhina i ngā kaupapa kua whakapuaki i ngā pūkenga rangatira i te pō nei. Koira te mea nui kia ora," says Gage.
The successful implementation of the initiative outlined by leaders tonight depends on the creation of a fund to support it.

Iwi leaders will present their business cases to international investors in the days following and are aiming for an investment of $100 million.