Many small island nations are confronting even more dire consequences. Sea level rise is not only inundating their homes and communities but decreasing their access to freshwater. As the sea-level rises, freshwater sources are coming salty and no longer potable (suitable for drinking). When a whole nation is at risk, there is no higher ground to relocate the entire population. Several small-island countries are at risk of no longer being inhabitable. The nation of Kiribati has purchased land in Fiji in order to move much of its population there in the coming years. Many residents of Tuvalu have moved to New Zealand. Relocating an entire nations puts their history, culture, and very existence as a people at risk.
Several films and shorter videos examine the challenges these islands are facing:
Also see the full-length documentary of the national and global political struggles of the Maldives to get the rest of the world to sufficiently address climate change – The Island President.
Explore what different sea level rise projections look like in coastal areas around the world with the tool below (click on the image). You can change the location and the amount of sea level rise to see the impacts. Knowing that we will likely see at least a 1 meter rise by 2100, explore what happens if it is at much as 2 or 3 meters. Don’t just explore the US, also look at places like Shanghai, China (pop. 25 million!), Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (pop. 9 million), Bangkok, Thailand (pop. 8 million), Amsterdam, Netherlands, and Kolkata, India. Remember this is a global problem.
This and other sea level rise related tools are available at Climate Central.
Here is a flood projection mapping tool specific to Southern California.