Visit the EarthView web site to meet the team and learn about the project.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Small Island Developing States

The first thing most people notice when they enter EarthView is just how much of the earth's surface is covered by water. It is nearly 70 percent, but this is not always obvious from maps.

The second thing is just how many islands are found around the world -- and how little we know about most of them. At the Earth Summit in 1992, small, developing countries on islands were identified as having some common characteristics and concerns. The threat of global climate change makes these concerns even more urgent -- not just because of rising sea levels but also because of the vulnerability of tiny ecosystems to change. On large land masses, we might find that growing areas shift by a couple hundred miles; this is not possible on an island that is ten miles wide!

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations has created the SIDS program as a way to help with food security on small islands around the world. The SIDS web site can also be useful for those who wish to start learning where some of the small island countries are located.

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