climate change impact the development of small island states. Although small island developing States are among the least responsible of all nations for climate change, they are likely to suffer strongly from its adverse effects and could in some cases even become uninhabitable. This is what makes them such a special case requiring the help and attention of the international community.
climate change impact
These island nations are found throughout the world, although most of them are located in the wider Caribbean and South Pacific regions. The land: sea ratios for the SIDS are largely skewed. Their Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) are often larger than their land area. Nauru’s EEZ, for example, is nearly 15,000 times the size of its land area, whereas Samoa’s is eight. Many SIDS – the Maldives, for example – have solely or mostly low-lying land areas; others, such as Haiti, have a varied terrain, including mountainous areas.
Although all populations are at risk, some are more vulnerable than others. Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are in the front line, encapsulating the range of acute to long-term risks, from more extreme floods and storms, to increased risks of water-, vector- and food-borne infectious diseases, and other communicable and non-communicable diseases, to sea-level rise threatening fragile healthcare facilities, mainly but not exclusively, situated in coastal areas.
Tamil is a municipality on the island of Yap in the Federated States of Micronesia. It includes twelve villages with a total population of about 1200 people living in 848 households (Office of Statistics, Budget and Economic Management, Overseas Development Assistance, and Compact Management, 2011). The community has experienced flooding, erosion, and drought driven by climate change, in addition to saltwater intrusion into freshwater sources and taro patches.
Water security is further impacted by poor water management, high dependence on the watershed, and lack of alternative water sources as many local wells are degraded or contaminated by waste and sedimentation from erosion.