Articles on South Pacific

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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

UN ruling could be a game-changer for climate refugees and climate action

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.
An atoll in the Republic of Kiribati, an island nation in the South Pacific that’s in danger of disappearing due to climate change. (Shutterstock)

What happens when a country drowns?

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.
Tropical Cyclone Winston nears Fiji on February 20, 2016. NASA Goddard Rapid Response/NOAA

Winston strikes Fiji: your guide to cyclone science

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. EPA/UNICEF

Beyond Cyclone Pam: identifying Vanuatu’s strengths and needs

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

Fiji’s women speak up in growing numbers inside parliament

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…

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