The Republic of Kiribati is a low-lying Pacific Island nation, composed of 33 atolls.
Many Small Islands Developing States (SIDS) in the Pacific are suffering from the next climate impacts: loss of coastal land and infrastructures as a consequence of erosion, sea-level rise, storm surges, increased and severe cyclones (endangering life, health and infrastructures), loss of coral reefs impacting the biodiversity on which citizens depend, variability in rainfall amounting to inundations in some areas or drought in others, salt water intrusions damaging water supplies or agricultural land and extreme temperatures.
Scientists project that by 2080, the risk of flooding in Pacific atoll countries is likely to be roughly 200 times greater than at the start of this century. Without any adaptation, Kiribati could lose about 34 percent of its 1998 GDP by 2050 because of climate change and sea-level rise.
Adaptations such as desalinizing the saltwater that intrudes into freshwater aquifers are technologically possible. However, partnership and solidarity within States are essential for low-lying island countries that are among the poorest nations in the world, with far fewer capacities to mitigate the impacts of climate change and adapt to them.