Skip to main content

“God and Tonga Are My Inheritance!”—Climate Change Impact on Perceived Spritiuality, Adaptation and Lessons Learnt from Kanokupolu, ‘Ahau, Tukutonga, Popua and Manuka in Tongatapu, Tonga

Part of the Climate Change Management book series (CCM)

Abstract

Climate change is a significant threat to health and well-being, in particular to people’s spiritual well-being, in coastal areas and communities. This paper describes the findings of a 2013 study on impacts of climate change on people’s spiritual well-being in 5 coastal communities in Tongatapu, Tonga: Kanokupolu, ‘Ahau, Tukutonga, Popua and Manuka, using a concurrent convergence parallel triangulation design. Information was collected from a group of 460 participants aged 15–75 via self-administered questionnaire, in-depth interview (IDI), focus group discussions (FGD) and key information interviews (KII). There was a statistically significant difference between people whose spirituality was affected and those unaffected (p < 0.005). People who were worried and whose physical well-being were affected, emerged as the most strongly affected (χ2(4) = 15.780, p < 0.005). The same factor was explored qualitatively using thematic analytical strategy, and concluded that climate change had affected people’s spiritual well-being, negatively. Lessons learnt from this paper will be useful for people invested in policy practice, and pastorate serving the cause of holistic Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) in Tonga: preaching, fasting and praying to God to reverse climate change and its impacts, help State and Church to adapt more effectively and comprehensively.

Keywords

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution.

Buying options

Chapter
USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
eBook
USD   149.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as EPUB and PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
Softcover Book
USD   199.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Compact, lightweight edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info
Hardcover Book
USD   199.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Durable hardcover edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Purchases are for personal use only

Learn about institutional subscriptions

References

  • Australian Bureau of Meteorology and Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). (2014). Climate variability, extremes and change in the western tropical Pacific: New science and updated country reports (Vol. 2). Melbourne, Australia: Pacific-Australia Climate Change Science and Adaptation Planning Program Technical Report, Australian Bureau of Meteorology and Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation.

    Google Scholar 

  • Barnes, J. I., MacGregor, J., & Alberts, M. (2012). Expected climate change impacts on land and natural resource use in Namibia: Exploring economically efficient responses. Pastoralism: Research, Policy and Practice, 2(1), 1–23.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bazeley, P. (2007). Qualitative data analysis with Nvivo (2nd ed.). London: SAGE.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bible Society of the South Pacific. (1966). Koe Tohi Tapu Katoa [The Holy Bible in Tongan]. Suva: The Bible Society in the South Pacific.

    Google Scholar 

  • Creswell, J. W. (2013). Qualitative inquiry and research design: Choosing among five approaches. United State of America: SAGE.

    Google Scholar 

  • Creswell, J. W. (2014). Research design. Los Angeles: SAGE.

    Google Scholar 

  • Creswell, J. W., & Plano Clark, V. L. (2007). Designing and conducting mixed methods research. United State of America: SAGE.

    Google Scholar 

  • Creswell, J. W., & Plano Clark, V. L. (2011). Designing and conducting mixed methods research (2nd ed.). United State of America: SAGE.

    Google Scholar 

  • George, D., & Mallery, P. (2016). Ibm spss statistics 23 step by step—A simple guide and reference (14th ed.). New York: Routledge Taylor & Francis Group.

    Google Scholar 

  • GOV.UK. (2013). Wellbeing and health. UK: Department of Health and Cabinet Office.

    Google Scholar 

  • GOV.UK. (2014). The relationship between wellbeing and health. UK: Department of Health.

    Google Scholar 

  • Government of Tonga. (2015). Tonga strategic development framework 2015–2025—A more progressive Tonga: Enhancing our inheritance. Tonga: Ministry of Finance and National Planning.

    Google Scholar 

  • Government of Tonga. (2016). Tonga climate change policy: A resilience Tonga by 2035. Tonga: Government of Tonga.

    Google Scholar 

  • Havea, P. H., Hemstock, S. L., & Jacot de Combes, H. (2016). Preparing for better livelihoods, health and well-being—A key to climate change adaptation. In W. Leal Filho (Ed.), Climate change adaptation in Pacific countries: Fostering resilience and improving the quality of life. Berlin: Springer.

    Google Scholar 

  • Havea, P. H., Jacot des Combes, H., Hemstock, S. L., Gee, K., Han, D., Khan, M. G. M., & Moore, T. (2017). Climate change impact on livelihood, health and well-being: A mixed method approach (Ph.D. thesis). The Unversity of the South Pacific, Fiji.

    Google Scholar 

  • IPCC. (2014a). Climate Change 2014: Impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability. Part A: Global and sectoral aspects. Contribution of Working Group II to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1132 pp.

    Google Scholar 

  • IPCC. (2014b). Climate Change 2014: Impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability. Part B: Regional aspects. Contribution of Working Group II to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 688 pp.

    Google Scholar 

  • IPCC. (2014c). Climate Change 2014: Mitigation of climate change. Contribution of Working Group III to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ipsos MORI. (2014). Global trends 2014: Environment. Global Trend: UK. Retrieved Dec 28, 2016 from http://www.ipsosglobaltrends.com/environment.html.

  • Lātūkefu, S. (1975). The Tongan constitution: A brief history to celebrate its centenary. Nuku’alofa, Tonga: Tonga Traditions Committee.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lātūkefu, S. (2014). Church and state in Tonga: The Wesleyan methodist missionaries and political development, 1822–1875. Australia: University of Queensland Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Leiserowitz, A., Maibach, E., Roser-Renouf, C., Feinberg, G., & Rosenthal, S. (2015). Climate change in the American Christian mind: March 2015. New Haven, CT: Yale Project on Climate Change Communication: Yale University and George Mason University.

    Google Scholar 

  • Luetz, J. M. (2017). Climate change and migration in the Maldives: Some lessons for policy makers. In W. Leal Filho (Ed.), Climate Change Adaptation in Pacific Countries: Fostering Resilience and Improving the Quality of Life. Berlin: Springer.

    Google Scholar 

  • Matangi Tonga Online. (2001). Tongans make big investment in education. Matangi Tonga Online: Tonga. Retrieved May 31, 2016 from http://matangitonga.to/2001/01/30/tongans-make-big-investment-education.

  • McIver, L., Woodward, A., Davies, S., Tibwe, T., & Iddings, S. (2014). Assessment of the health impacts of climate change in Kiribati. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 11(5), 5224–5240.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Michaelis, L. (2011). Climate change and spirituality. In L. Bouckaert & L. Zsolnai (Eds.), Handbook of spirituality and business (pp. 236–244). London: Palgrave Macmillan UK.

    Google Scholar 

  • Miles, M. B., Huberman, A. M., & Saldaña, J. (2014). Qualitative data analysis: A methods sourcebook (3rd ed.). London: SAGE.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, & National Emergency Management Office. (2010). Tonga: Joint national action plan on climate change adaptation and disaster risk management 2010–2015. Kingdom of Tonga: Nuku’alofa.

    Google Scholar 

  • Morrison, M., Duncan, R., & Parton, K. (2015). Religion does matter for climate change attitudes and behavior. PLoS ONE, 10(8), e0134868. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0134868.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Nunn, P. D., Aalbersberg, W., Lata, S., & Gwilliam, M. (2014). Beyond the core: Community governance for climate-change adaptation in peripheral parts of Pacific Island Countries. Regional Environmental Change, 14, 221–235. doi:10.1007/s10113-013-0486-7.

  • Nunn, P. D., Mulgrew, K., Scott-Parker, B., Hine, D. W., Marks, A. D. G., Mahar, D., et al. (2016). Spirituality and attitudes towards nature in the pacific islands: insights for enabling climate-change adaptation. Climatic Change, 136(3), 477–493.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Ozkan, B. C. (2004). Using NVivo to analyze qualitative classroom data on constructivist learning environments. The Qualitative Report, 9(4), 589–603.

    Google Scholar 

  • Peck, R., & Devore, J. L. (2012). Statistics: The exploration and analysis of data (7th ed.). USA: Brooks/Cole Cengage Learning.

    Google Scholar 

  • Roser-Renouf, C., Maibach, E., Leiserowitz, A., & Rosenthal, S. (2016). Global warming, god, and the “End Times”. New Haven, CT (Yale Program on Climate Change Communication): Yale University and George Mason University.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ryan, B. F., Joiner, B. L., & Cryer, J. (2013). Minitab handbook. United State of America: Cengage Learning.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sekona, H. K. (2014). Tonga—a land dedicated to god. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints: Tonga. Retrieved Mar 7, 2017 from https://www.lds.org/ensign/2014/08/tonga-a-land-dedicated-to-god?lang=eng.

  • Springer. (2012). Advanced statistical methods for the analysis of large data-sets. Heidelberg: Springer.

    Google Scholar 

  • Statistic Department of Tonga. (2016). Tonga 2011 census of population and housing: Volume 1—basic tables and administrative report. Tonga: Tonga Department of Statistics.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sullivan, M. (2013). Statistics: Informed decisions using data (4th ed.). New York: Pearson.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tonga Department of Statistic. (2008). Tonga 2006 census of population and housing, volume 1: Administrative report and basic tables (Vol. 1). Nuku’alofa: Tonga Department of Statistics.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tonga Department of Statistic. (2011). Tonga national population and housing census 2011: Preliminary results. Nuku’alofa: Statistic Department of Tonga.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tonga Department of Statistic. (2013a). Tonga 2011 census of population and housing, volume 2: Analytical report. Nuku’alofa: Government of Tonga.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tonga Department of Statistic. (2013b). Tonga 2011 census of population and housing: Volume 1—basic tables and administrative report. Nuku’alofa: Tonga Department of Statistics.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tonga Department of Statistic. (2016). Tonga—National Population and Housing Census 2011. Tonga: Tonga Department of Statistics.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tonga Department of Statistic, & Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC). (2008). Tonga 2006 census of population and housing, volume 2: Analytical report (Vol. 2). New Caledonia: SPC.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tonga Meteorological Service. (2015). Climate update for Tonga. Government of Tonga: Nuku’alofa.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tonga Meteorological Service. (2016). Climate summary of Tonga. Tonga: Government of Tonga. Retrieved Jun 20, 2016 from http://www.met.gov.to/index_files/climate_summary_tonga.pdf.

  • USGCRP. (2016). The impacts of climate change on human health in the United States: A scientific assessment. In A. Crimmins, J. Balbus, J. L. Gamble, C. B. Beard, J. E. Bell, D. Dodgen, R. J. Eisen, N. Fann, M. D. Hawkins, S. C. Herring, L. Jantarasami, D. M. Mills, S. Saha, M. C. Sarofim, J. Trtanj, & L. Ziska (Eds.). Washington, DC: U.S. Global Change Research Program, 132 pp.

    Google Scholar 

  • Woodward, A., Hales, S., & Weinstein, P. (1998). Climate change and human health in the Asia Pacific region: Who will be most vulnerable? Climate Research, 11, 31–38.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • World Health Organisation (WHO). (2011). Public health and environment (PHE): Percentage of deaths and DALYs attributable to the environment, 2004 deaths. Geneva: WHO. Retrieved Jun 26, 2013 from http://gamapserver.who.int/gho/interactive_charts/phe/total_percentage/atlas.html.

  • World Health Organisation (WHO). (2015). Human health and climate change in Pacific Island countries. Geneva: World Health Organisation.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank the people of Kanokupolu, ‘Ahau, Tukutonga, Popua and Manuka. Also, we want to acknowledge PaCE-SD (Pacific Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development) for supervising this project and the Research Office at USP (University of the South Pacific), for providing financial assistance for this work under its Ph.D. Regional Scholarship Fund, No. 6F004-3107-70766-00. The study was approved by PaCE-SD and funded by the Research Office at USP. Finally, we want to thank the EU PacTVET Project for funding Peni’s trip to Apia, Samoa to present this paper in this World Symposium on Climate Change Impact and Adaptation Strategies in Coastal Communities.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Peni Hausia Havea .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

Copyright information

© 2018 Springer International Publishing AG

About this chapter

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this chapter

Havea, P.H., Hemstock, S.L., Combes, H.J.D., Luetz, J. (2018). “God and Tonga Are My Inheritance!”—Climate Change Impact on Perceived Spritiuality, Adaptation and Lessons Learnt from Kanokupolu, ‘Ahau, Tukutonga, Popua and Manuka in Tongatapu, Tonga. In: Leal Filho, W. (eds) Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation Strategies for Coastal Communities. Climate Change Management. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-70703-7_9

Download citation

Publish with us

Policies and ethics