Out of land and almost underwater, the country of Kiribati may move to Fiji
Moving is such a bitch. You’ve got to find a buddy with a truck, friends willing to work for food, and tranquilizers for the cat. It’s even tougher when you’re moving a whole country, a situation the tiny island nation of Kiribati faces. Do you know how hard it’s going to be finding enough boxes to move 100,786 people? Kiribati’s pizza bill is going to be shocking. And crossing 2055 miles of open ocean ain’t like moving out to the county — your pal’s pickup is going to need excellent ground clearance.
Lawrence Caramel (who sounds delicious) at The Guardian has the story, complete with weird British spellings and distances measured in kilometers:
The people of Kiribati, a group of islands in the Pacific ocean particularly exposed to climate change, now own a possible refuge elsewhere. President Anote Tong has recently finalised the purchase of 20 sq km on Vanua Levu, one of the Fiji islands, about 2,000km away.
The Church of England has sold a stretch of land mainly covered by dense forest for $8.77m. “We would hope not to put everyone on [this] one piece of land, but if it became absolutely necessary, yes, we could do it,” Tong told the Associated Press…
Within a few decades, small islands in the Pacific and Indian oceans risk being extensively or even completely submerged. In places the sea level is rising by 1.2cm a year, four times faster than the global average.
Kiribati may be the first to pull the trigger and purchase lands for a new home, but it is unlikely to be the last. “We are the canary,” Kiribati president Anote Tong told CNN. “But hopefully, that experience will send a very strong message that we might be on the frontline today, but others will be on the frontline next.”
Pity Kiribati’s mailman. He’s gonna have a stack of forwarding requests 137 feet high.