Saturday, June 21, 2008
Reference: Atoll leader asks Australia for aid as tide rises, Bangkok Post, June 21, 2008
It is reported that man-made global warming has caused a rise in the sea level sufficient to inundate an atoll in Kiribati, a chain of 33 such islands (Atoll leader asks Australia for aid as tide rises, Bangkok Post, June 21, 2008). Atolls form when a volcanic island sinks by subduction until only a ring of coral around the submerged island remains. Atolls exist as long as the rate of subduction is less than the rate of coral growth. When the rate of coral growth does not keep up with the rate of subduction, the coral island becomes inundated with sea water. It is a natural geological phenomenon that cannot be related in any way whatsoever to man-made global warming or greenhouse gas emissions. One should also consider that if rising sea level were the cause of such inundation it would affect all atolls not just one; and that available sea level data do not show that the sea level is rising. South Pacific islanders have been abandoning sinking atolls since time immemorial. They are not climate refugees. They are subduction refugees.