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Facing Oblivion, Island Nation Makes Big Sacrifice

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the sink-or-swim dept.

Earth 360

Damien1972 writes "Kiribati, a small nation consisting of 33 Pacific island atolls, is forecast to be among the first countries swamped by rising sea levels. Nevertheless, the country recently made an astounding commitment: it closed over 150,000 square miles of its territory to fishing, an activity that accounts for nearly half the government's tax revenue. What moved the tiny country to take this monumental action? President Anote Tong, says Kiribati is sending a message to the world: 'We need to make sacrifices to provide a future for our children and grandchildren.'"

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Accordians:hunting::the french:war (0, Troll)

biryokumaru (822262) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622052)

How does this protect their children and grandchildren?

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1)

persicom (136940) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622112)

In theory, we'll be so pissed off that we can't fish that we'll do something about global warming that will save them.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1)

Elektroschock (659467) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622170)

Or like that. Basically, maybe law enforcement is not very strict there.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (-1, Troll)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622362)

This little man was bought off by the IMF. He will end the traditional self-sufficiency of his little land, selling it for dependency on the REAL rising tide: unrepayable debt. Debt that is tied to conditions that ensure the natives will never be able to manage on their own livelihoods again.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (3, Informative)

HungryHobo (1314109) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622122)

Presumably it ensures that there will still be decent fish stocks in the area in decades to come.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (2, Interesting)

icebike (68054) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622144)

Or, since no one can fish, they will move away from low lying Kiribat and there will be fewer people to be swamped by rising sea levels.

Daft.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622420)

Worse, by taking fish out of the water, you make the water level go down (see Archimedes' principle), counteracting rising sea levels.

A fishing ban will only make the sea rise faster.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (2, Interesting)

HungryHobo (1314109) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622454)

I'm guessing TFA is talking about fishing rights sold to other countries or companies.
not local fishermen.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1)

catmistake (814204) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622588)

Rather than sacrifice the income... why couldn't they just use the money for desalinators... and then sell bottled water to pay for scuba gear, underwater human habitats, and contractors from the UAE to make more islands for them?

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (2, Interesting)

GiveBenADollar (1722738) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622162)

Ahh, so what does that have to do with rising sea levels? If it's only about conserving their cash crop then it makes sense, but when you tie it into global warming it gets screwy. Also how does stopping all fishing in these areas really help it any better then limiting fishing? This article is poorly written at best, anyone care to shed some light on this from other sources?

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1)

Suki I (1546431) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622308)

It helps irrational people feel better.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (2, Insightful)

HungryHobo (1314109) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622464)

because stopping all fishing in an area is far more effective?
It's harder to police quotas than an outright ban in certain areas.
They could have decided that over the next few decades their government is going to need more money so if they stop all fishing in large sections of their national waters they can increase their future income?

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (5, Insightful)

fluffy99 (870997) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622148)

Having RTFA, it looks like they are taking measures to protect the corals from fisherman with the hope that the gesture will generate awareness and sympathy (ie money) towards their plight. It also hints that by establishing a preserve, they hope to increase tourism to offset the financial loss.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (5, Insightful)

jd (1658) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622266)

And since tourists are more likely to want to go to places not drowned, they're also quite nicely snagging interested elements in the tourist entry to back them. It's actually quite ingenious and although it's unlikely to succeed to the point of saving their nation, it might well be the point at which eco-tourism becomes a significant movement. Or perhaps not - that's the danger of futurology, the future is too damn uncertain to make accurate predictions on what will happen.

The most important aspect of this, though, is the incredible gamble of present-day unreliable income in the hopes of securing a future stable income. Politicians are not noted for being up on long-term thinking, when short-term goals offer them rewards right then and there. This is actually quite remarkable, regardless of what happens, and I am greatly impressed.

It's a simple equation actually (0, Redundant)

arcite (661011) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622592)

Consider, a single wealthy tourist is worth several thousand dollars per visit. They will stay in a hotel, buy food and drink, a souvenir, partake in excursions and other entertainment.

Now, how many FISH does one need to sell to equal that? Answer: ALOT.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622326)

Having RTFA, it looks like they are taking measures to protect the corals from fisherman with the hope that the gesture will generate awareness and sympathy (ie money) towards their plight. It also hints that by establishing a preserve, they hope to increase tourism to offset the financial loss.

They want to be the Palestinians of the Pacific? That makes more sense than anything else in the article, I suppose.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622340)

Having RTFA

This is simply unacceptable behaviour.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1)

x_IamSpartacus_x (1232932) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622458)

I RTFA too and I think they are actually doing something different. It looks like they consider closing off the marine area to fishing a conservation effort in and of itself and that they are protecting the wellbeing of the planet by doing so.

Over the past two years, President Tong has brought together 16 Pacific Ocean nations to develop the initiative, which seeks to maintain ocean health by improving management of fisheries, protecting and conserving biodiversity, furthering scientific understanding of the marine ecosystem, and reducing the negative impacts of human activities.

Whether you agree that closing this fishing area is good for the planet or not it looks like they are doing this because they want to do their part in keeping earth healthy and they consider this to be it, not to generate awareness or bring in tourists.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622502)

They know that their country is doomed. But before it dies, they still have sovereign control over their waters, so they're exercising it for the long-term good of the planet. Think of it as a nation-state's last will and testament, leaving a nature preserve for those that will survive it.

Finally a sensible response (1)

arcite (661011) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622544)

Of course, as anyone who as ever actually lived on a tropical island knows, fishing does not generate very much income....tourism on the other hand, or ECO tourism can really rake in the dough.

The sad fact of the matter is there are very few pristine coral reefs left in the world. Build a few 5 star eco logdes on these islands and they will be worth MAGNITUDES more in revenue than fishing will ever hope to bring in.

(I have lived on islands in the Caribbean and Indian Ocean, so I have a clue - unlike most knee jerk global warming deniers on here)

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (0, Flamebait)

NFN_NLN (633283) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622194)

How does this protect their children and grandchildren?

They'll be so poor and hungry that sex will be the last thing on their mind. Less sex, less children. Problem solved.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622250)

They'll be so poor and hungry that sex will be the last thing on their mind.

It doesn't work that way.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (2, Funny)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622282)

Which is why Africa is doing so w... wait. What?

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622412)

Actually it's the other way around. Well developed countries with higher income per capita, have fewer children, their growth is caused by immigration.

Re:Accordians:hunting::the french:war (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622370)

It doesn't since once the country is underwater and everyone leaves, the country, and the no-fishing zone, cease to exist.

the bigger picture (5, Insightful)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622478)

It makes perfect sense if you understand that when they speak of "our children and grandchildren", they're speaking as residents of Earth, not of Kiribati. They're taking a step toward conservation of the planet's biosphere (to the limited but measurable extent that they are able), and setting an example for others to follow, to help preserve it for future generations of humans, not just future generations of I-Kiribati.

Huh? (3, Funny)

persicom (136940) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622056)

so we wait until they drown and then fish?

They're gonna feel like... (-1, Flamebait)

tfiedler (732589) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622090)

They're gonna feel like fools when the doom and gloom prophesies don't pan out.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (5, Informative)

NFN_NLN (633283) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622146)

They're gonna feel like fools when the doom and gloom prophesies don't pan out.

According to the South Pacific Regional Environment Program, two small uninhabited Kiribati islets, Tebua Tarawa and Abanuea, disappeared underwater in 1999.


And in other parts of the world:

-A tiny island claimed for years by India and Bangladesh in the Bay of Bengal has disappeared beneath the rising seas, scientists in India say.
-Over the last century, sea levels have risen about 20 centimetres (8 in);[17][18] further rises of the ocean could threaten the existence of Maldives, being the lowest country in the world, with a maximum natural ground level of only 2.3 metres (7 ft 7 in), with the average being only 1.5 metres (4 ft 11 in) above sea level.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (5, Informative)

ugen (93902) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622230)

The claim about the island by India/Bangladesh was discussed here on /. recently and was shown to be total bunk.

As of right now no island or territory had sunk due to rising sea levels.

Any islands that have disappeared in the last 100 years or so did so due to erosion - either natural and slow or, on occasion, due to storms and hurricanes.

As far as Kiribati goes, there is precisely 0 chance of them sinking due to rising sea levels. The real problem is the unregulated phosphate mining that essentially destroyed their island and, likely, undermined (pun intended) the natural strength of island formation. If it disappears beneath the sea - they can only blame themselves.

Good on them for closing their waters to fishing, though. Of course with ever-increasing world population that wants to eat (go figure) that just means some other place will be over-fished.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622378)

The claim about the island by India/Bangladesh was discussed here on /. recently and was shown to be total bunk.

Well, if that was established in a discussion on Slashdot then I don't think there's anything more to be said on the matter. Talk about citation overkill! There's a monk out back with a ladder.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (4, Informative)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622484)

"Any islands that have disappeared in the last 100 years or so did so due to erosion - either natural and slow or, on occasion, due to storms and hurricanes."

However, increasing the base ocean level greatly increases erosion. The height of waves is something like Gaussian distribution, and increasing the level greatly increases the number of high waves in the 'long tail'.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (1)

Kreigaffe (765218) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622534)

Don't forget earthquakes. Those tend to mess up the lay of the land pretty hard too. I hear they've had a few big ones in Asia lately.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (3, Insightful)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622274)

Welcome to the cycles of nature.

New land is being formed as well, and new islands, even with rising sea levels.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (-1, Troll)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622300)

Maybe if we by carbon credits from Al Gore's carbon trading firm, those islands will come back with unicorns and triple-rainbows.

Aside from the media, liberal politicians, and moonbats.... not everyone agrees on the AGW hypothesis.
Raise all the "awareness" you want, the sun's not listening.
http://stagevu.com/video/nhljdfsznpkc [stagevu.com]

Re:They're gonna feel like... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622400)

Is the sea level rising? Or are plate tectonics lowering the land level in relation to the sea? The New Zealand earthquake moved the plate 11 feet. Kinda makes 20 centimetres over a century seem pretty inconsequential, doesn't it?

Re:They're gonna feel like... (5, Insightful)

sstamps (39313) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622574)

I don't understand why people automatically assume that scientists who spend DECADES studying a particular phenomenon are totally blind to the Captain Obvious answers and don't bother to check them out as part of their research. In your job, do you ignore the bleedingly obvious, to the point of gross incompetence? Why do you automatically assume the same of other people who know a HELL OF A LOT MORE about a subject than you do?

Yes, sea levels are rising, measured in many places with and without local tectonic activity. Yes, scientists have checked against such obvious things and have filtered any such "noise" from them out of their findings.

If you want to challenge the findings of scientific research, get your arse out of that chair and back into college, then get out there and DO the research to prove them wrong. Failing that, I'll take the word of people who know wtf they are talking about over some anonymous coward on the intarwebs.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (2, Interesting)

Improv (2467) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622150)

If only we could get all the ostrich-minded lot like you to move there. Still, it'll be small consolation being able to say "I told you so" when it's going to affect the rest of us anyhow. In a more just reality, there'd be two planets, one that could be stewarded responsibly, and one that denialists could ruin.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (0)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622316)

It was better when we talked about pollution. Air and water quality, acid rain, ozone, etc. Now you all put your eggs in one basket with AGW. As the AGW hypothesis is shown to be flawed.... it makes the rest of the environmental movement look like liars.

And there are many problems with the AGW hypothesis.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (1)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622550)

"Now you all put your eggs in one basket with AGW. As the AGW hypothesis is shown to be flawed.... "

Now you put your head up your ass. As your ass has been shown (repeatedly) to be deep enough - you can't see the light.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (0)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622644)

Man... you are like my right wing friends when I tell them Palin is a mistake. They freak the fuck out just like you did now.

AGW might just be bullshit. It was better when we dealt with pollution. I'd bet if we met in person, and compared our "carbon footprints", recycling, energy usage... probably by any metric I would be more "green" than you. But you spout your nonsense about heads up asses because, what, I think the AGW hypothesis has some problems? You have been SOLD the AGW line, and now you bark at me like your masters told you to. "Burn the heretic!"

You are no different than Bill O'Reilly railing against net neutrality because his boss owns NewsCorp.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (5, Informative)

Trepidity (597) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622202)

The doom and gloom prophecies for fish-stock collapses, at least, are pretty much already halfway through panning out.

Re:They're gonna feel like... (4, Funny)

Pinky's Brain (1158667) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622422)

Fish stocks haven't gone down, it's a global liberal conspiracy which has altered all historic records ... just like with global temperature records (everyone knows that not only is there no AGW, there is no global warming period).

Re:They're gonna feel like... (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622220)

They've already been starting to pan out and once it becomes obvious to everyone, the Fox News and talk radio morons who now blabber continuously about the "global warming hoax" will find a Democrat to blame for the entire problem. Just as they blame the housing bubble and economic crash on Barney Frank (ranking opposition member of the House banking committee during 2002-2006 when the GOP controlled the WH and both houses of Congress), oh, maybe 100,000 times a day.

the final solution (3, Interesting)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622222)

>>>They're gonna feel like fools when the doom and gloom prophesies don't pan out.

Not really. Even if 2100 arrives and nothing terrible has happened, they'll still benefit from a smaller population and abundant food supply. So it's a win-win solution.

In fact I think population control, like China's 1 baby per family, will eventually become necessary... especially after oil becomes scarce and skyrockets to $1000/barrel (~$30/gallon of gasoline). Simply put either WE will impose population limits, or nature will do it for us (via starvation in the cities).

Re:the final solution (1)

Suki I (1546431) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622348)

>>>They're gonna feel like fools when the doom and gloom prophesies don't pan out.

Not really. Even if 2100 arrives and nothing terrible has happened, they'll still benefit from a smaller population and abundant food supply. So it's a win-win solution.

In fact I think population control, like China's 1 baby per family, will eventually become necessary... especially after oil becomes scarce and skyrockets to $1000/barrel (~$30/gallon of gasoline). Simply put either WE will impose population limits, or nature will do it for us (via starvation in the cities).

If your scarceness scare becomes reality the population will thin itself.

Re:the final solution (2, Interesting)

Klinky (636952) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622624)

Which is exactly what he's saying... It's just the option that you want to do it in a controlled fashion or in a freefall? If you don't think that voluntarily curbing population is a good idea, then I guess you're suggesting involuntary(starvation, wars, disease) curbing is the better alternative? That or your suggesting the Earth is infinite and will never be depleted OR you don't really give a shit since Jesus is coming any day now...

Insert nazi reference here _____ (1)

durrr (1316311) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622364)

Oil costing $1000 per barrel will happen if the dollar hyperinflates(then we can probably suspect $1billion/barrel) or if everyone stops using oil for anything for a few decades and you buy an authentic barrel of 2010 BP as a collectors item.
Barring massive market manipulation, inflation or some semi-apocalyptic event there will never ever be a time when oil could rise to $1000 a barrel while our dependence on it is kept at a level similar to today. Long before it would hit that price it becomes economically viable to use non-fossile sources for all our hydrocarbon needs.

Oh, and for nature to impose population limits for us she better start working now, because we're nowhere short of stopping technological advancements allowing us to be more than ever before, in increasingly smaller spaces. Heard about vertical hydroponics? It's like skyscrapers for plants, allowing us to grow more than ever before per square meter of earth surface. It's extremely unlike that we'll suddenly freeze the earth population at 6b, it's a pipe dream of the crazy enviromentalist lobby. By year 3000, we'll be a hundred billion people, on approximately the same footprint, with a higher standard of living.

Re:the final solution (3, Insightful)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622430)

In fact I think population control, like China's 1 baby per family, will eventually become necessary... especially after oil becomes scarce and skyrockets to $1000/barrel (~$30/gallon of gasoline)..

1) Why not move the excess population off-Earth? We're already talking about space tourism as a reality... it's not that big of a step from tourism to colonization, especially 90 years from now.

2) Who says that gasoline will be a primary source of energy in 2100, let alone transportation? One would figure that by the time prices for gas rises to $10/gal (in 2010 dollars), the market itself would find a way to either create hyper-efficient engines, or folks will just replace their gas-powered cars with electric-powered ones.

The funny part is, "WE" will likely begin limiting our own population anyway. You may notice that the more prosperous a country becomes, the lower the birthrates. At least half of the countries in Europe have birthrates lower than self-replacement right now... China is already facing a looming population drop as it is - a one-child policy, an over-abundance of males, and an aging demographic. These three factors will pretty much chop the numbers down pretty harshly by 2100. Even India is showing a (albeit slowly) declining birthrate. [indexmundi.com]

All in all, I suspect that world birthrates are going to come down anyway.

Re:the final solution (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622448)

Wow, great work! You've hit the not a real problem nail on the head. Ignoring inflation Oil will never be 1000/barrel. It could be synthesized from renewable energy for less then that. Hell, 5000/barrel is enough to make oil useful only as a chemical feedstock and gasoline very specialized power supply.

Except the solution to population growth is giving people jobs, late night TV and a relatively conformable lifestyle. In 1st world nations the middle classes typically fall just below the ability to replace themselves with zero government intervention. Hell, in Japan and some northern European nations the opposite problem is true: Populations are decreasing. The only reason population growth continues at it's current rate is agricultural advancement moved faster then social and industrial. The more people you can give a 9 to 5 that pays 15 an hour, the better you will control population.

Re:the final solution (3, Interesting)

backslashdot (95548) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622466)

Under the following achievable assumptions, I would actually like to see someone prove that we cannot sustain 100 billion humans for 100,000 years.

1. We build enough solar panels to produce all the Earth's energy. Every home shall have solar panel roofs .. this would provide more than 7 times the world's current enrgy consumption. I can't find the link that proves this .. but if you google it you will find a site that shows covering an area in a desert the size of Rhode Island will provide all the Earth's energy needs (including the energy extracted from oil).

2. We recycle all materials in solar or hopefully nuclear fusion power plants. Though for some minerals it's plain ridiculous to claim we'll run out .. for example .. 10% of the Earth's crust is Aluminum, claiming we will run out of Aluminum is like saying we will run out of sand or Silicon. Same thing with carbon with which we can make plastics .. though it may be cheaper to recycle.

3. Nobody consumes more than 30 kilowatts of electricity a day (I consumed 15 in the winter when I lived in NY ..so 30 is generous)

4. We set up solar or hopefully nuclear fusion powered desalination plants and pipe the water inland. All the salt form the water is saved and then remixed with the waste run off water and put back in the ocean .. this ensures there is no change in ocean salinity (even locally because it will be spread out in distro points).

5. We setup up solar or hopefully nuclear fusion powered waste treatment plants that break up via incineration poisons into the constituent elements which can safely be returning remixed into the soil and mines from whence the original elements came.

6. We produce the twelve essential proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, and other nutrients artificially using energy .. the same way plants do it but without the toxins that plants use to prevent themselves from being eaten.

7. On average we live in 3500 square foot homes with a 6000 square foot yard (or vice versa depending on preference).

Re:the final solution (1)

backslashdot (95548) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622508)

On point number 6, we can choose to have farms instead .. (since even if everyone owns 10,000 square feet of land .. there is still 4/5ths of the earths land area left to put farms on .. even after putting farms in .. we still have 50% of the land area on which to do nothing ..one human can live off the farm product of 20,000 square feet a year .. I calculated 10,000 sq based on crop yield and soil fertility assumptions .. assuming we recapture the minerals used to fertilize .. which isn't too hard to do).

Re:They're gonna feel like... (5, Interesting)

timeOday (582209) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622252)

They're gonna feel like fools when the doom and gloom prophesies don't pan out.

It's not a "prophesy," it's a measurement [wikipedia.org] . (Unless you think that trend will suddenly reverse for some unexplained reason?)

Unfortunately (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622094)

Corruption is much louder than their message.

Good luck ... (2, Insightful)

jaroslav (467876) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622098)

I wish the people and governments of these island countries well and I certainly think they should try whatever they can to get attention for their plight, but the lesson learned in COP15 is that the major industrial powers of the world are not willing to make major changes in their greenhouse gas emissions. And basically the rest of the world can't do a damn thing to make them.

Re:Good luck ... (1, Interesting)

AnonymousClown (1788472) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622182)

Poor countries like these will be the first to go in terms of collapse. Eventually, it'll catch up to us and then and only then will it be taken seriously. Of course it'll be too late and we'll be taking horribly drastic actions - forced abortions, forced migration, impoverishment of the populace for examples.

The biggest thing I've seen for the resistance towards human caused global climate change isn't the science (the criticism is just an excuse), it's the fear of wealth transfer - people in rich countries are afraid their money will be taken by the UN to compensate small countries like Kirbati. I have doubts about the UN's competency myself, btw.

Basically, I get the impression in the West that we want to shit in others yards, eat their cake and keep ours. It's really not a moral failing of Westerner (read White), but a human failing - if the South Pacific Islanders got developed before us, they'd be doing the same thing.

Re:Good luck ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622224)

And it's been happing for millennia: eroding volcano peaks are what made Hawaii, and why their smallest islands are so small, they erode. I'm curious to find out how much of the island's shrinkage or loss or due to erosion, and how much is due to rising oceans.

Re:Good luck ... (1, Insightful)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622350)

Most people do not consider India, China and Brazil as the major industrial powers of the world (although you could certainly make the argument that they are).

Of course (0, Troll)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622100)

What do you expect from a bunch of island savages?

Re:Of course (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622280)

Wow. Someone's sarcasm/humor detector is broken.

Never thought I'd hear that name again... (5, Interesting)

Tragek (772040) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622106)

Quite enjoyed J. Maarten Troost's The Sex Lives of Cannibals which takes place on the island of Kiribati. A great beach book.

It's interesting to hear the government making a commitment like this. As the article has the president saying: "One million is 1+1+1 and so on. Every person and every action is important." Too often forgotten methinks. The cynic in me is losing out today; facing extinction of their islands, I can hope enough that they're sincere, and they others will listen.

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (1)

Tragek (772040) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622118)

*islands. Islands. Plural. Many islands.

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622164)

Quote:
"It's interesting to hear the government making a commitment like this."

Commitment?

You mean pointless gesture more harmful to their own people than anything else?

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (3, Insightful)

Nursie (632944) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622232)

Yeah, because trying to preserve fish stocks and marine habitats from today's massive overfishing is pointless. Clearly.

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (0, Troll)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622264)

Republicans - gotta love 'em.

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622548)

Partisans - they can suck my dick

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622640)

You'll need a Republican Senator for that. Try the airport men's room.

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (4, Funny)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622172)

Wait, they're cannibals? I guess that explains why they can get by without fishing.

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (1, Insightful)

GiveBenADollar (1722738) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622190)

But what does fishing have to do with global warming?! I'm going to stop running my water while brushing my teeth tomorrow as my way of fixing the hole in the ozone layer. There that problem's solved!

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (3, Funny)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622262)

Think bigger... Masturbate to support global climate change!

Re:Never thought I'd hear that name again... (2, Funny)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622450)

You fool! You'll cause an ice age!

please rate this as a troll comment (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622124)

Is this slashdot or digg? From the articles I can't tell anymore. I used to like the news when it wasn't slanted towards any particular angle, but there are no good news sources anymore.

Deaf ears (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622168)

Getting the American marketers to stop getting the rapidly expanding middle class of China on the consumerism gravy train simply wont happen until something collapses.

Re:Deaf ears (2, Insightful)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622298)

Getting the American marketers to stop getting the rapidly expanding middle class of China on the consumerism gravy train simply wont happen until something collapses.

The boom in China is dependant on an America willing and able to purchase their goods. The continuing erosion of the middle class in America means this boom for China may come to an end - In other words, you may get your 'collapse'...

Atol Growth (2, Informative)

WryCoder (18961) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622176)

Studies show that atols and coral islands maintain their height above sealevel. The coral grows upwards as sealevel rises.

Re:Atol Growth (3, Interesting)

maeka (518272) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622212)

Studies show that atols and coral islands maintain their height above sealevel. The coral grows upwards as sealevel rises.

I'm not sure I understand how the dead skeletons of corals past, which are what makes up coral islands, are going to maintain their height above sea level by growing. Perhaps if they get covered by water for a few millennium new corals will attach themselves and grow upon the old? ;)
 

Re:Atol Growth (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622276)

GAH! blockquote fail.

Re:Atol Growth (1, Redundant)

kylemonger (686302) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622354)

an explanation of how atolls rise with sea level.

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/27/floating-islands/ [wattsupwiththat.com]

Re:Atol Growth (5, Informative)

maeka (518272) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622390)

You're (and the article) are talking about low-level atolls (not coral islands) which are mildly to unvegetated and not at all the type of atoll or island suitable for human habitation, thus not the subject of this discussion.

Not to mention, atolls won't rise as fast as the sea. They will be under water for thousands of years before once again cresting. Nothing in your linked article successfully argues otherwise.

So....what? (3, Informative)

msauve (701917) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622196)

Does this somehow help them? The article doesn't say.

How much of their fishing territory does this eliminate (article says 150,000 square miles, but doesn't mention the current total area)?

Basically, the article is poorly written, even mixing units - square miles, then square kilometers. Has all the appearance of a "puff piece."

Re:So....what? (0, Flamebait)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622360)

Has all the appearance of a "puff piece."

Of course it is, it's just another "all you people living in rich countries (especially those in the U.S.) should feel guilty for living, look how these people are willing to sacrifice" piece.

dont bother with google maps (3, Interesting)

FudRucker (866063) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622204)

as far as google maps is concerned the islands have already sank in to the pacific

Re:dont bother with google maps (4, Funny)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622272)

Then I guess we can fish there.

Re:dont bother with google maps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622296)

If you can find it. As William Gibson wrote : "There's no "there", there."

Re:dont bother with google maps (3, Informative)

BlueScreenO'Life (1813666) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622278)

Not really [google.com] , but sure, if you search Kiribati it returns a location in the middle of the ocean rather than a specific island.

Re:dont bother with google maps (1)

Matheus (586080) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622398)

Google does a piss poor job of centering their maps on location...

Kiribati is there and labeled tho (and not *that far from when Google puts you and so far zoomed out you can't see the islands anyway)

1.877639,-157.40593

That should help.

Sounds like simple government oppression (-1, Troll)

Kohath (38547) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622242)

A government restricts the lives of ordinary, innocent citizens, making them poorer in the process, while the government officials continue on without changing their lifestyles at all. Or the government officials make a profit from the change by getting payments (or something else of value) from environmental special interest groups or from the fishermen who use the other, non-restricted territory and have fewer competitors selling fish.

Governments using unnecessary force against people is oppression, even when the rulers are The Good People and they are doing it for The Good Reasons.

Someone who cared about islanders would suggest they actually solve their problems (in the event those problems actually happen) by building some small seawalls or other simple structures to deal with a modest rise in sea levels. Whining and making ridiculous and destructive spectacles is useless and childish.

Re:Sounds like simple government oppression (5, Insightful)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622402)

Someone who cared about islanders would suggest they actually solve their problems (in the event those problems actually happen) by building some small seawalls or other simple structures to deal with a modest rise in sea levels.

WTF... did you even bother to read the article? He's doing this to protect marine diversity and fish stocks, you know, kinda like how the US has national parks. It has absolutely nothing, whatsoever, to do with dealing with rising sea levels.

Seriously, its times like this, when a blatantly uninformed post gets modded up to +4, that I wonder why the hell I even bother with this place anymore...

Re:Sounds like simple government oppression (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622432)

Both the summary and the article go to great lengths to make a vague connection between rising sea levels and cutting off fishing. It's a mystery to me (and apparently most of slashdot) how they're connected, and neither the article or summary say what the connection is, but it's definitely implied.

Re:Sounds like simple government oppression (0, Flamebait)

ShakaUVM (157947) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622480)

Both the summary and the article go to great lengths to make a vague connection between rising sea levels and cutting off fishing. It's a mystery to me (and apparently most of slashdot) how they're connected, and neither the article or summary say what the connection is, but it's definitely implied.

Perhaps they think the fish will drown?

Re:Sounds like simple government oppression (1)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622542)

It takes a little bit of insight and inductive thinking to figure out the connection (i.e. doing what good they can do while they can still do it) Something most /.ers are incapable of.

Re:Sounds like simple government oppression (0, Flamebait)

Kohath (38547) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622474)

WTF... did you even bother to read the article?

Seriously? This is Slashdot. Do the editors even read the articles?

The summary talked about islands threatened by rising sea levels. People who live on tropical islands have many, many years to prepare simple structures to deal with rising sea levels (if they rise at all).

Furthermore, the idea that billions of people who don't live on tropical Pacific islands should give up leading prosperous lives to protect a few thousand people from (the risk of) having to build a 30-40 centimeter seawall over the course of the next 100 years... Well, it seems like an unwise choice.

Re:Sounds like simple government oppression (4, Insightful)

rainmouse (1784278) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622442)

Someone who cared about islanders would suggest they actually solve their problems (in the event those problems actually happen) by building some small seawalls or other simple structures to deal with a modest rise in sea levels. Whining and making ridiculous and destructive spectacles is useless and childish.

Limiting the areas the locals are allowed to fish to protect coral reefs is hardly a good example of government oppression. It's merely a publicity stunt to raise awareness of their plight which advertising their nation for international tourism.
Your saying that one of the poorest countries in the world would be able to exist below sea level on tiny flat islands without contaminating their fresh water supplies by building walls? Please provide more details about these magic walls and how high and thick you think they will need to be, what materials and how 100,000 fishermen could afford it?

Re:Sounds like simple government oppression (4, Interesting)

Apuleius (6901) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622446)

Do you even know anything about Kiribati? The country is so small that in New England towns that size still use town meetings for most government decisions. He is closing the fishery to protect fish stocks and to make a point for the world at large. As for sea walls, those would do nothing against the salinization of groundwater on those islands. When your well draws sea water, you have to leave the island anyway, which is what is happening in those islands.

Re:Sounds like simple government oppression (0, Flamebait)

Kohath (38547) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622566)

Do you even know anything about Kiribati?

Of course not. Is that a rhetorical question? Do the people of Kiribati know about me? Are they interested in my problems?

He is closing the fishery to protect fish stocks and to make a point for the world at large.

Protecting people from eating and making a spectacle. Bravo.

As for sea walls, those would do nothing against the salinization of groundwater on those islands. When your well draws sea water, you have to leave the island anyway, which is what is happening in those islands.

I admit to not knowing about island fresh water supplies. I'm not sure I believe a small rise in sea levels would automatically change ground water to salt water. Perhaps there is something constructive to be done about it. But I'm pretty sure whining and prohibiting fishing isn't a remedy.

Ah yes, the American way is So much better (1)

arcite (661011) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622476)

Wow, I thought all the neocons were put out of business. LOL, who are these 'environmental special interest groups' you speak of who go around the world bribing government officials to oppress their citizens?

Your paranoia is palpable, but you really must get yourself a passport and see the world.

One would have thought the recent BP disaster and the machinations of that AMERICAN corporation to limit their liability would be enough to wake your people up, but alas, you're all too obese, insolvent, unemployed, and glued to television, to care. Now that is sad. I hope you have your guns loaded (I just assumed you were a gun nut).

Re:Sounds like simple government oppression (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33622494)

How do you know this was forced on "the people"? Where did you get that info? Seeing as the islands will cease to be inhabitable shortly I'd say they aren't losing anything here. I'm sure they considered seawalls and such but constantly holding back the open ocean when your land is only a couple of feet above sea level isn't a simple task. However, you know it is a conspiracy with those awful environmentalists with their concern for our collective future and all that.

Enjoy your paranoid axe-grinding.

I see a article full of speculation (0)

codepunk (167897) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622318)

Plenty of speculation in the article, "facts" however are completely missing.

like your post? (1)

arcite (661011) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622604)

:::: zing::::

Or another solution! (1)

Snaller (147050) | more than 4 years ago | (#33622622)

Don't have children! Then no grand children.

Problem solved!

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