If the Spratley’s can be transformed so dramatically, can the Pacific’s sinking islands
Preventing climate displacement on many of the world’s atoll nations, and saving those nations from what could be their eventual demise might just be easier than many people think. No matter what one may think about the legality of China’s presence in the Spratley Islands, one thing is clear; When a nation is committed to transforming an atoll or an island into a land mass capable of long-term human habitation, and dedicates the resources to do so, this is clearly technologically possible. Read what the New York times has to say about this here. Over the last year, China has created seven new islands by banking sand over reefs near the Spratley Islands in its quest to gain a foothold near some of the world’s busiest shipping lanes. One has the capacity to hold an airstrip. China may or may not have the legal right to be on the Spratley’s, and it is hoped that the ongoing disputes over the islands will end peacefully and in accordance with relevant international law. But no matter what eventually occurs in this geopolitical hotspot, what China’s moves have shown the world – in particular places such as Kiribati, the Marshall Islands, Tokelau, Tuvalu and beyond – is that technological solutions to save the many of the most heavily threatened atolls may be far more advanced than is commonly assumed. With the right political motivations, policies grounded in compassion and our shared humanity, and the devotion of adequate resources and skill, the fates of our small island brothers and sisters might not be as dire as it seems. Getting a real commitment by those with these skills and funds use them to save these nations from otherwise dismal futures, however, remains the biggest task at hand.