Monday, November 10, 2008
Maldives Preparing to Flee Rising Seas
While countries such as the US and China are pouring out the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide like there is no tomorrow, the leader of the island nation of the Maldives has come to realize that maybe there actually is no tomorrow, at least for his country. With scientific predictions that sea level might rise by several feet by the end of this century which is about the elevation of the islands, with the highest point of the nearly 1,200 islands being only about 8 feet, the recently elected Mohamed Nasheed told The Guardian that “We do not want to leave the Maldives, but we also do want to be climate refugees living in tents for decades.” The plan is to buy land. Where? The most likely places according to Nasheed are Sri Lanka and India. Australia is another possibility. The money for land purchases would come from funds generated by tourism. If nothing else, this plan should get the issue of climate change more attention. Perhaps it will finally get the world leaders to take action on a scale that is meaningful. Like the melting Arctic icecap and the disappearing glaciers of Greenland this plan sends an alarm.