Well folks, we can’t say that we haven’t been warned about this.
Rising ocean levels attributed directly to global warming have been blamed for completely wiping out five of the Solomon Islands. That’s right–poof!–gone, you can’t visit them anymore. Which means climate change is now evolving well beyond a force that can mess with our weather, and one that can swallow entire nations.
The islands affected–Kale Island, Rapita Island, Kakatina Island, Zollies Island and Rehana Island–are small and uninhabited. They were once home to thriving plant life, but all that remains of them now are a few tree stumps that poke out from the surface of the ocean–a bleak look at what could lie ahead for other, larger islands and coastal nations.
Another six islands belonging to the Solomon Islands have also seen their coastlines shrink by 20 per cent since 1947, which has so far resulted in the destruction of two entire villages. Between 2011 and 2014 alone, ten homes were destroyed. If anything, this research only serves to confirm what those living in Pacific have been saying for years: their countries are sinking. And fast.
Taro Island, a provincial capital in the Solomon Islands, is preparing to relocate its entire population as rising water levels encroach on all sides. About 5,000 km away in Kiribati, rampant flooding is becoming so frequent that some hotel rooms are equipped with life jackets.
In other words, if any Pacific Island nations happen to be on your bucket list, our advice is to get a plane ticket soon. Because the sad reality is, they might not be around for much longer.