Pacific Islands Forum: Tuvalu children welcome leaders with a climate plea

Climate crisis is more than a meeting agenda item in a host country that could be left uninhabitable by rising sea levels

As the leaders of Pacific countries step off their planes at Funafuti airport this week for the Pacific Islands Forum, they are being met by the children of Tuvalu, who sit submerged in water, in a moat built around the model of an island, singing: “Save Tuvalu, save the world.”

The welcome sets the tone for a Pacific Islands Forum meeting that will not only have climate change at the top of the agenda – as it has been for many years – but is being hosted by a country that the UN says is one of the most vulnerable to rising sea levels, which could render it uninhabitable in the coming century.

Related: Australia’s standing in Pacific has plummeted because of our climate change failure | Dermot O’Gorman

Related: Australia must prepare for a Chinese military base in the Pacific | Hugh White

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