While there might be some who might not believe that climate change is definitely happening, the latest turn of events might change the way some thoughts. Five small islands in the Pacific have disappeared due to rising seas and erosion. This is a discovery that has been thought to be the first scientific confirmation with regards to the impact on our changing climates, especially those found in coastlines in the Pacific, according to researchers from Australia.
Five Tiny Islands in the Pacific Swallowed up by Rising Water Levels Due to Climate Change
Climate change is now seen as a major concern and this latest development has made some to be more wary about the issue. The islands that were swallowed up in the Pacific were part of the Solomon Islands, which is an archipelago that has, over the last two decades, seen annual rise in sea levels by as much as 0.4-inches (or 10-millimeters), as per a study which has been published in the May issue of the Environmental Research Letters, an online journal.
The missing islands are not inhabited by any humans, and range in size from 1 (2.5-acres) to 5-hectares (12.3-acres). However, there are six other islands that have large swathes of land that have washed into the sea. Furthermore, two of those have entire villages that were destroyed which forced the people living there to relocate, according to what the researchers had found. One of those islands was the Nuatumbu Island, which was home to 25-families and 11-houses. Half of that island is an inhabitable area that was lost since 2011, according to the researchers.
This particular climate change study is the first one that scientifically “confirms the numerous anecdotal accounts from across the Pacific of the dramatic impacts of climate change on coastlines and people,” as what the researchers have written in a separate commentary found in an academic website. In order to acquire the images and the information for the research, the scientists had used aerial and satellite images that dates back to 1947. In their quest to find relevant data, they took note of 33 islands by using traditional knowledge and radiocarbon dating of trees.
With the release of the study, it raises questions as to how the government is providing support with regards to the growing issue of climate change. “This ultimately calls for support from development partners and international financial mechanisms such as the Green Climate Fund,” head of the Solomon Islands’ National Disaster Council Melchior Mataki stated in a commentary.