Daily journal 18 October - Clive Hawigen is a 25 year old now interning with the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP). He was born and raised in a village in the highlands of Papua New Guinea in Goroka. For Clive, traveling is a new experience - he had never left Goroka until he ventured to Samoa to start working for SPREP.
This is a daily journal of Clive's voyage during the CBD COP 10 in Nagoya, Japan. He will share with us his adventure as it's his very first time to leave the Pacific region and travel far across the World.
"Coming through the Nagoya Conference Centre’s (NCC) check point every morning is something that I don’t look forward to doing. The first time I went through the security check, I assumed that once we registered we’ll enter without further checks.
But then I realized this was not the case once we passed the first check point and went on to the next.
These check points had metal detectors with guards mending every section, although friendly, they were serious with what they were doing.
First, these guards would scan your ID cards and then you move to the metal detection area, removing your laptop from the bag and emptying your pockets before walking through the detector.
Again my experiences to these type of situation were only limited to action movies like the Peacemaker or From Paris with Love and at the airports.
I became self conscious and it made me think back to the security guards back in Papua New Guinea. At the very first sound of trouble they come armed to the teeth with machetes, batons, bows and arrows and even long coffee sticks. It can be scary but here although it’s all friendly, I can never get the fear out of my mind especially the thought of going to prison in another country.
As for the conference itself, the Satoyama Initiative launched by the Japanese government was an interesting concept to promoting biodiversity conservation worldwide. Satoyama is the ancient Japanese practice of balancing human needs with nature.
Thinking about it, this initiative is not so new in the Pacific.
In PNG people do live side by side with biodiversity. Take for instance the hunting of the Bird of Paradise.
This exotic bird plays an important part in PNG customs and tradition and the only way to catch it is to use traditional weapons as opposed to guns. Very early in the morning when it’s all misty, hunters go out into the jungle, armed only with specially made bows and arrows. Following the elegant cries of the Birds of Paradise, they catch the matured ones.
In this way they live in harmony with nature. Also the method of gardening where gardens once a patch of garden is harvested, they move to another site living the old site to regenerate."