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BONN: October 26, 2017. As the official logistics partner for the UN Climate Change Conference (COP23) in Bonn next month, Deutsche Post DHL has shipped a traditional Fijian canoe, or drua, to serve as a symbol of resilience and unity for the expected 20,000 attendees.

Peniana Lalabalavu, deputy secretary in the Office of Fiji's prime minister and coordinator of the country's presidency for COP23 explained: "The drua connects Fijian culture and traditions with Bonn and with international climate change negotiations. It symbolizes that Fiji will be leading the world to look for solutions, and to step up climate action."

"The drua is also a symbol of how the whole world really is in the same canoe when it comes to climate change," she added.

cop23-druaDeutsche Post DHL said it is providing attendees climate neutral shipping and logistics services, helping to facilitate the conference with meeting areas, and offering exhibitions of its e-fleet and activities promoting sustainability.

"Since we are in the logistics business, we are a major player in creating greenhouse gas emissions," said Christof Ehrhart, head of Corporate Communications and Sustainability. "We are aware that we have a responsibility."

Ehrhart added that supporting Fiji was the "natural" thing to do and so arranged transport of the drua from Britain's National Maritime Museum to Bonn by truck. Fiji is already experiencing the impact of climate change including rising sea levels and stronger storms.

Speaking ahead of COP23, UN deputy secretary-general Amina Mohamed commented: "The Paris Agreement is not a chain that can be broken by a weak link, but a web of ever deepening and widening influence in terms of realizing a better, safer and more secure future for every one on Earth."

Mohamed noted that cities and regions, businesses and investors are providing crucial support and new levels of creativity to help governments "fast-forward" their climate action plans.

She cited the work of the Under2 Coalition that now includes 187 jurisdictions on six continents that collectively represent more than 1.2 billion people and US$28.8 trillion dollars of GDP – equivalent to more than 16 per cent of the global population and 39 percent of the global economy.

The coalition originated from a partnership between California and the German state of Baden-Württemberg with the goal of ensuring the level of global warming was kept under two percent. Despite Trump Administration opposition at the federal level, 23 U.S. cities and states have already joined the coalition.

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