Posted by: islandsfirst | April 15, 2008

Send us your Island Stories

The stories are not few. From the Carteret Islands to Tuvalu, Kiribati across the seven seas, island nations are the canaries in the coal mine when it comes to climate change and the environmental degradation of our oceans. While any number of strange solutions may be proposed, islanders are being increasingly forced to contemplate the existential threat posed by rising sea levels.

As Islands First supports efforts to address this crisis at the United Nations, we appeal to all of you to share your stories. Send us your news and your concerns, what you see and what you hope not to see. We’ll voice those stories here as well as in the international forums at which they must be heard.

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Responses

  1. Climate Witness: Kini Dunn, Fiji

    Kini’s nephews – Nicolas Dunn (left) and Barney Dunn (right)

    Links: Internal links
    Read the stories of more WWF Climate Witnesses

    The Dunn family burial ground at low tide.
    © 02 Dec 2008
    The cemetery in Togoru village, Fiji, has been overwhelmed by rising sea levels. Children play in the water above the tombstones. But village patriarch Kini Dunn, now in his eighties, remembers a time when the graves lay in the shade of palm trees.

    The cemetery in Togoru village, Fiji, has been overwhelmed by rising sea levels. Children play in the water above the tombstones. But village patriarch Kini Dunn, now in his eighties, remembers a time when the graves lay in the shade of palm trees.

    “When I was a young man, the village graves were a long way inland. We thought of ourselves as living ‘on the coast’ then.

    “Now the house where I was born is a couple of hundred metres out to sea.

    “Things began to change after the big earthquake in 1953. The coastline eroded much faster and the sea washed away our land.

    The waves break on our doorsteps now
    “Our family has lived here in Togoru for as long as anyone can remember, and we cannot see ourselves moving – even though the ground our ancestors trod is gradually disappearing into the sea.

    “The waves literally break on our doorsteps now and wash over the ground around the trees, exposing their roots and killing them.

    “In the past we asked the government for help, but now we look to anyone who might hear of our plight. The sea wall they built 25 years ago is no use anymore.

    “If this continues we will soon lose our homes and plantations. Everything will be gone.”


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