Global Warming Effects Around the World

Solutions to Global Warming for the Small Islands

Because heat-trapping warming emissions from the small island states are a very small percentage of overall emissions, this region's responses to global warming include calls to other countries to limit global temperature increases and aggressive efforts to adapt to the changes that are coming.

This region, which more than 40 million people call home, consists of more than forty small island developing states spread across the Indian and Pacific oceans, the Mediterranean, and the Caribbean. These low-lying coastal nations face similar challenges in that they have small populations, limited resources, remoteness, susceptibility to natural disasters, and excessive dependence on the international community for trade.

Sea-level rise poses perhaps the greatest threat to these nations. Storm surges, flooding, erosion, and even possible inundation threaten the future occupancy of some islands. They also face significant threats to their vital infrastructure, water resources, fisheries, coral reefs, tourism income, and agricultural resources.

Small island nations have banded together in the international arena to call on other countries to limit their emissions in order to curtail the devastating impacts of climate change on their vulnerable nations. Some—including the Maldives, Tuvalu, and several Caribbean island states—are also working to go carbon neutral (zero net greenhouse gas emissions).

Solutions to Global Warming
Australia & New Zealand
Latin America
North America
Polar Regions
Small Islands
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Why You Need to Act Now
Substantial scientific evidence indicates that an increase in the global average temperature of more than 2°F above where we are today poses severe risks to natural systems and human health and well-being. To avoid this level of warming, the U.S. needs to reduce heat-trapping emissions by at least 80 percent below 2000 levels by 2050. Delay in taking such action will require much sharper cuts later, which would likely be more difficult and costly.