IPCC Climate Change Report and Small Islands

IPCC Climate Change Report and Small Islands: Small islands, whether located in the Tropics or higher latitudes, have characteristics which make them especially vulnerable to the effects of climate change, sea level rise and extreme events.

 

Deterioration in coastal conditions, for example through erosion of beaches and coral bleaching , is expected to affect local resources, e.g., fisheries, and reduce the value of these destinations for tourism . Sea-level rise is expected to exacerbate inundation, storm surge, erosion and other coastal hazards, thus threatening vital infrastructure, settlements and facilities that support the livelihood of communities. For instance, inhabitants of Tuvalu and Carteret Atoll are threatened by sea level rise and lack of fresh water resources.

Climate change is projected by the mid-century to reduce water resources in many of these small communities, e.g., in the Caribbean and Pacific, to the point where they become insufficient to meet demand during low rainfall periods.

With higher temperatures, increased invasion by non-native species is expected to occur, particularly on those located in middle and high-latitude areas.