AOSIS is a coalition of 44 small island and low-lying coastal developing states, including five observers. As a voice for the vulnerable, its mandate is more than amplifying marginalised voices as it also advocates for these countries’ interests. In terms of size, AOSIS closely resembles the countries it represents on the global stage, but often punches far above its weight, negotiating historic global commitments to cut greenhouse gas emissions, among other achievements.
To achieve its goals, AOSIS often draws on partnerships, including with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the European Commission, to bolster its capacity to effectively influence climate negotiations, some of the most complex and difficult in the world. AOSIS also makes vital contributions by helping its members to pool their resources and amplify their collective voice in climate talks. This goes beyond just speaking up to securing ambitious agreements with tangible benefits for vulnerable communities.
Climate change is one of the first issues AOSIS tackled when the coalition was formed 30 years ago. It has been instrumental in shaping the outcomes of COP 23 and the Paris Agreement, ensuring a strong focus on SIDS in the context of the Agreement. Following the entry into force of the Paris Agreement and formulation of the operational guidelines, its main priority is to ensure that global emissions pathways are consistent with reducing temperature rise well below 1.5oC, especially in the context of the IPCC Special Report on 1.5oC.
As SIDS have been globally recognized as a special case for sustainable development, AOSIS has been striving to ensure that the specific challenges they face are addressed, particularly through the implementation of the SIDS Accelerated Modalities of Action (SAMOA) Pathway.
Historically, SIDS have been stewards of large expanses of ocean, and in this regard recognize the significance of the conservation and sustainable use of the ocean. AOSIS was a strong proponent of the UN Oceans Conference in 2017 and continues this role in the lead up to the UN Ocean Conference in 2020.
AOSIS will continue to seek international cooperation and partners to maintain its capacity and build new capacity to address new challenges in these key areas and others as we help SIDS and other vulnerable states amplify their voices and make lasting environmental, socio-economic and geopolitical impact.