Opening Australia up to the South Pacific before the rest of the world would provide practical aid that Australia's rivals cannot.
New research confirms that massive plumes of buoyant hot rock once rose from near the Earth's core to the surface and triggered vast volcanic eruptions - and that New Zealand sits on top of one.
The Indonesian president outlined four major steps to improve the relationship, two of which were quite unexpected.
In this October 2011 photo, members of the Royal New Zealand defense force pump sea water into holding tanks ready to be used by the desalination plant in Funafuti, Tuvalu, South Pacific. The atolls of Tuvalu are at grave risk due to rising sea levels and contaminated ground water.
AP Photo/Alastair Grant
A recent ruling by the UN's Human Rights Committee recognized that climate refugees do exist, and acknowledged a legal basis for protecting them when their lives are threatened by climate change.
The South Pacific was rocked by two nearly simultaneous earthquakes and a devastating tsunami.
AAP Image/Tamara McLean
A devastating quake and tsunami in the Pacific Ocean prompted a new kind of post-disaster research. Ten years on, we need these lessons to prepare for a precarious future.
An atoll in the Republic of Kiribati, an island nation in the South Pacific that’s in danger of disappearing due to climate change.
Island nations composed of low-lying atolls are at risk of being wiped out by rising sea levels in the era of climate change. Yet the international community is doing next to nothing to help them.
High tide at Nukatoa Island, in the Takuu Atoll, Papua New Guinea.
Rising sea levels and tectonic activity have eroded the coastlines of the low-lying Carteret Islands in the South Pacific.
Australia aims to counter China’s growing influence in the region.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison's historic visit to Vanuatu is centred around security. This fits a pattern shifting the focus from development to militarisation in Australia's Pacific foreign policy.
Election winner, former coup leader, Josaia Voreq “Frank” Bainimarama, speaking at a climate change conference in Germany in November 2017.
The re-election of a former coup leader as Fiji's prime minister comes as Australia pays more heed to the south-west Pacific.
Reports that China plans to build a military base in Vanuatu seem to have little substance at this stage.
The reports are speculative at best, but that hasn't stopped a torrent of over-wrought commentary on Chinese military expansion and the potential threat to Australia.
Looks like paradise – but how did the first people get there?
Global Environment Facility
Researchers ran computer simulations that take into account environmental variability and geographical setting to investigate how early explorers made it to these tiny, remote islands in the Pacific.
Tropical Cyclone Winston nears Fiji on February 20, 2016.
NASA Goddard Rapid Response/NOAA
Cyclone Winston produced wind speeds of around 300 km per hour, making it one of the strongest storms to make landfall.
Vanuatu has a well-co-ordinated disaster response system but limited material resources. Medical support is needed when a disaster like Cyclone Pam strikes.
The people of Vanuatu have always had to cope with extreme weather events, but natural disasters on the scale of Cyclone Pam test their strengths and leave areas of vulnerability exposed.
A Fijian election officer shows a ballot to scrutineers at the 2006 election. Last month’s election resulted in a stronger vote for female MPs.
AP Image/Peter Williams
In a region that has long had the worst representation of women in politics in the world, Fiji’s recent election delivered some good news: one in seven Fijian MPs are women, while the parliament now has…