Nine atolls, 26 square kilometres, 11,000 inhabitants lost in the middle of the Pacific, almost on top of the date line. Tuvalu – ex Ellice Islands, ex British colony, member of the Commonwealth – is the fourth smallest state in the world, and its highest elevation is ten feet above sea level. This means that before 2050 it will be the first nation to disappear completely under the ocean, whose level is relentlessly rising due to global warming.
That was the prediction of the 2007 report released by the International Panel on Climate Change, which was confirmed in the last report issued in September 2019. Another grim confirmation for Tuvalu came through a series of devastating events, which in the past years already wiped a significant portion of its territory away.
Today the Tuvaluans are suddenly frightened by the sea on whose shores they have always lived, and in desperate search for a new homeland. If they do not manage to find one, they will become the first climatic refugees in history.
( 2010 )