Monday 23 November 2009

Rising Tides Submersing Kiribati

Casey Beck and Austin Blair, from Tufts University, show in this video the devastating affects that climate change, and the worlds rising sea level is submerging their island country, the Pacific republic of Kiribati (pronounced Kiribas).

"Over the past 40 years the villagers have seen the sea rise, storm surges become more frequent and spring tides more forceful."

This small, central pacific nation, made up of 33 coral atolls, is one of the lowest lying nations in the world and is especially vulnerable to high tides and the rising sea level.

"The average i-Kiribati [Kiribati inhabitant] certainly thinks it's getting hotter," says Emil Shutz, a former government minister who now runs tours for the country's few recreational visitors. "Ten years ago they could fish all day in a tinnie, but not any more - it is just too hot."

Not only Kiribati, but also Tuvalu, the Maldives, the Marshall Islands and the Carteret Islands of Papua New Guinea are all presently experiencing the same continuous gradual submergence of their homelands  due to rising sea-levels.

The president of Kiribati, Anote Tong, has told Radio Australia's Pacific Beat program he's concerned by the negative outlook for the Copenhagen talks.
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