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Northern Mariana Islands pursue Green Growth Initiative

by | Feb 12, 2024 | Northern Mariana Islands, Science and Environment | 0 comments

The Northern Mariana Islands and the US territories, more broadly, have long faced a distinct threat from climate change. The territories’ economic reliance on tourism, their geographic location, and their unique legal status have put them at great risk from continued global warming. Despite this looming peril, however, the Northern Mariana Islands have done little in the way of climate action.

In late January, however, Northern Mariana Islands Governor Arnold Palacios (I) reversed this trend with an executive order pursuing a Green Growth Initiative. The project will be pursued in collaboration with the Northern Marianas College and headed by college president Galvin Deleon Guerrero. The Green Growth Initiative aims to implement the United Nations (UN) seventeen sustainable development goals (SDGs).

UN Sustainable Development Goals are based on improving the world today in a way that lasts into the future, hence the “sustainability” aspect of the goals. They are concerned with premises like ending poverty, establishing gender equality, and protecting the planet. In 2015, all 193 United Nations member states, including the United States, signed onto the UN’s 2030 agenda, committing to pursue the SDGs.

Governor Palacios emphasized two mindsets that he hoped the initiative would entrench in the government’s approach to climate change. First, he argued that climate action must be centered around the future: creating a better life for the “next generation and the next generation thereafter. Second, he claimed the Green Growth Initiative was about materiality and ensuring that climate goals exceed lofty ideals to become palpable action.

What the Green Growth Initiative entails, however, remains to be seen. It is likely the policy planks and specifics will be ironed out over the coming months.



Kabir Buch

Kabir Buch

Kabir Buch is a senior at the Harker School in California. He’s passionate about constitutional law and political science, and worked on a lawsuit protecting free speech rights on social media (Cool World v. Twitter). He's deeply interested in global affairs and is a captain of his school's debate team. In his free time, he loves hiking, strolling through his neighborhood, and reading fantasy novels. At Pasquines, he's the Northern Mariana Islands Affairs Intern Editor.


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