In the Shadow of Climate Change
Tuvalu is a low-lying country whose 26 square kilometers rise to only four and a half meters above sea level at its highest point. Most of its nine islands are atolls; islands based on coral, which makes for porous earth, limited brackish ground water and limited plant life that can flourish in the harsh conditions. Despite this, communities have thrived in Tuvalu for over 2,000 years.
There are many predictions that Tuvalu will be uninhabitable within 50 years due to the effects of climate change. The Tuvaluan government has made pleas to the international community since 1994 to lower emission rates to slow the progression of global warming. Globally, the people suffering most from climate changes environmental consequences have contributed to it the least.
In the Shadow of Climate Change aims to look at the current impacts that climate change is having on families and everyday life, the subtleties, and far-reaching implications of future cultural loss. These images show my experience in the small community of Funafuti where I was based. This project was photographed over ten months funded by a Fulbright grant in 2010/2011.
Excerpts of this work have been published in:
As Danger Laps at Its Shores, Tuvalu Pleads for Action, The New York Times Green blog
As Water Rises, There’s No Place Like (or for) Home, The New York Times Lens blog
Scenes From an Island Nation Facing Its Own Demise, The Atlantic