United we slam

Published: Sunday 15 September 2002

The Pacific island nations of Tuvalu, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, the Marshall Islands and the Cook Islands have one thing in common: they may all be wiped out in 50 years. Because climate change has spawned an alarming rise in sea level in these countries.

To make their voices heard, the six states met at the annual Pacific Islands Forum and came down heavily on the us for not signing the Kyoto Protocol. The leaders of these islands released a statement saying they "expressed profound disappointment at the decision of the us to reject the Kyoto Protocol". Tuvalu Prime Minister Saufatu Sopoanga said: "We are very sad." Tuvalu is five metres above sea level at its highest point. Sopoanga's predecessor, Koloa Talake, said Tuvalu might sue the us and its climate policy sidekick, Australia, over their failure to ratify the protocol.

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