The Pacific Island nation of Kiribati may be the first country to disappear under the rising sea levels of climate change.
The Public Utilities Board (PUB) through the Kiribati Adaptation Program – Phase III (KAPIII) is now working with Posch and Partners Consulting Engineers (P&P) to do leak detection works, to improve water resource use and management on South Tarawa’s water transmission main. Water loss in the system is stated to be around 67% and the quality has decreased over the past years.
A mid term review conducted by the World Bank, Australian Government and Kiribati Government highlighted some of KAPIII’s achievement including one the many positive outcomes which was the Government of Kiribati’s confirmed determination of completing the project on time.
Low-lying island nations, some of which are little more than one metre above sea level, are regarded as some of the most vulnerable to rising seas blamed on man-made climate change.
The critical state of the water reserves is likely to get more serious in the future as a result of the impacts of climate change on future rainfall / drought patterns, together with the population growth.
A total of 7 landowners for Tabonibara and 11 for Nooto signed a voluntary land use agreement to declare their land for infiltration galleries which will be a reserve area for water.
Turning hand washing with soap before eating and after using the toilet into an ingrained habit could save more lives than any single vaccine or medical intervention.
The implications of climate change are already obvious for Kiribati and with limited options, relocation is one of them.
“If reactions from the recent UN Climate Change summit are anything to go by, the world is progressing to having concrete climate change legislation by the next climate summit in Paris in 2015,” Says Kiribati President, Anote Tong.
Many from all regions and all levels of economic development, advocated for a peak in greenhouse gas emissions before 2020, decisively reduced emissions thereafter, and climate neutrality in the second half of this century.